How Does Pet Allergy Occur
Pet allergens are most concentrated in homes with pets. But they are also found in buildings and public spaces without pets.
The main source of dog allergen is saliva, either directly from licking or from being transferred to their dander or hair. Cat allergens mainly come from glands in their skin and are spread through licking and grooming.
Pet allergens are sticky and can remain for months or years after a pet has gone. They can become airborne and attach to clothes and hair.
People can become sensitive to, or have an allergic reaction to, cats or dogs without ever having owned a pet.
Home Remedies For Pets Allergies
There are home remedies that can help alleviate certain symptoms. Lifestyle changes that can make a difference include:
- Home improvements: Making your home as hypoallergenic as possible can help. Consider installing an air cleaner with a HEPA filter and cleaning fabric surfaces regularly.
- Soothing baths: Your veterinarian might recommend bathing your dog or cat with a pet shampoo that contains oatmeal, Dr. Marsella explains.
- Dietary supplements: Supplementing your pets diet with fish oil can reduce flaky or itchy skin. Probiotics can also offer pets relief from skin allergies by restoring balance to bacteria levels in their GI tract, Dr. Marsella says. By improving the health of their GI tract, probiotics can help reduce allergy symptoms.
- Physical blockers: A simple intervention for itchy pets is to have them wear a T-shirt, since it appears it may reduce their drive to scratch, suggests Dr. Sypniewski.
Reduce Allergens In The Home
If your cat has allergies to things other than food, the best thing you can do is get rid of some of the allergens in your home.
To do this, Dr. Wooten recommends installing a HEPA filter in your air ducts and using an air purifier.
Also, you should keep your bedding clean. Washing all bedding weekly with unscented shampoo helps, Dr. Wooten said. Also wash any blankets.
Dealing with your cats allergies might seem stressful, but its really not all that bad. There are so many different ways to treat the symptoms, and your veterinarian will help you and your cat every step of the way.
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Topical Products Can Soothe Skin
Topical products, such as sprays or creams, can help soothe your cats irritated skin by reducing itching, which can help your cats skinbegin to heal. Some of these products contain hydrocortisone, which is asteroid that helps reduce swelling. Other products use tea tree oil or other ingredients to eliminate the itchiness from your cats skin.
Cool water baths can also help your cats skin feel better, and your veterinarian may recommend regular shampooing as part of her overall allergy relief plan. Some shampoos help clean a cats coat so the numberof potential allergens shes exposed to is reduced, while others help soothe irritated skin and reduce the potential for itching. Special baths of colloidal oatmeal or other skin-soothing ingredients can also help relieve your cats itchy skin.
Why I Love Zyrtec For Cats
Zyrtec is an antihistamine approved for use in humans to treat allergy symptoms. In veterinary medicine its used in both cats and dogs for the same indication … and more.
For dogs, Ill turn to Zyrtec when Benadryl fails. Usually, these are the itchy dogs: the hot spot-ridden, flea allergic, food allergic and/or atopic . Except in older dogs whose kidney function I carefully screen before embarking on a course, Zyrtec has proved incredibly safe and moderately effective. The ability to buy it OTC and dose it only once daily for some dogs not to mention its less drowse-inducing action has enlisted my fandom.
The only drawback? Its brand name version is more expensive, meaning it tends to be pricier than drugs like Benadryl. And for a drug that sometimes has to be administered for weeks on end, thats no small factor. Luckily, it’s off patent now and you can purchase generics for significantly less than the prettily packaged stuff.
Moderate dog success notwithstanding, where Zyrtec really shines is in my kitty patients. Though it doesnt work for all itchy cats, it does seem to help quite a bit far more than Benadryls diphenhydramine and significantly more than chlorpheniramine .
The dermatologists on VIN seem to agree: Good, safe stuff for cats, this Zyrtec. Probably more effective than the alternatives. And definitely easier because, for cats, we now know that once-a day dosing is perfectly appropriate.
Dr. Patty Khuly
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Don’t Choose The Soft Chair
According to the AAAAI, the best way to manage cat allergy symptoms is to avoid the allergen causing the symptoms.
If the house includes upholstered furniture, this means steering clear of it, since it can be a hotbed of dander in households with cats as the soft upholstery can trap dander.
Hard wooden chairs can’t harbor as many cat allergens, so you’re better off taking a seat there.
Even if you can’t spot any cat hair on that comfy looking couch, don’t go there.
Therapy For Feline Allergic Dermatitis
The second of a two-part series on feline allergic dermatitis considers therapy options for treating the disease
Feline allergic dermatitis is a chronic disease. The clinician must make the client understand that unless the offending allergen are identified and removed, a cure is not possible. The keys to the successful management of atopic dermatitis are client education and a combination of aetiologic, symptomatic and antimicrobial therapy.
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What Is Pet Allergy
About 1 in 5 people have a pet allergy. Most are allergic to cats or dogs, but you can also be allergic to other domestic animals, such as guinea pigs, mice, rats, horses and birds. Allergies are particularly common in people who handle pets as part of their job. Some people are allergic to more than one animal.
People with a pet allergy are also likely to have other allergies for example, to pollen and dust mites. Pet allergies can develop at any time during childhood or adulthood, but some people will grow out of them.
Symptoms Of An Allergy To Cats
Cats are one of the most popular pets in Australian households with felines found in 29% of homes1.
But did you know that contrary to popular belief, fur does not actually cause cat allergies. It is cat dander and saliva that trigger symptoms. Within seconds to minutes of exposure sneezing may start, followed by a sudden runny nose, even itchy, watery eyes. The longer you are exposed, the worse your symptoms usually get, including ongoing nasal stuffiness, sinus pressure over the eyes or in the cheeks and an itchy throat.
So theoretically, avoiding cats altogether would be the best way to minimise symptoms but even then there are no guarantees. Just being out in public may expose you to enough cat allergens to develop an allergy and trigger symptoms.
But its not all bad news – if you enjoy spending time around cats, talk with your doctor. Treatment can help relieve allergy symptoms and might help you enjoy Fluffys company for years to come.
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Medications For Treating Pet Allergies
Medicated shampoos and conditionersShampoos and conditioners ease allergy symptoms. For example, Relief Shampoo contains pramoxine, oatmeal, and Omega-6 fatty acids to relieve itching. HyLyt Essential Fatty Acid Shampoo contains soothing emollients and moisturizers.
AntihistaminesAntihistamines such as Benadryl, are often the first drugs used when a pet develops allergy symptoms, but they are ineffective in 80% of pets. Some pets will respond to one antihistamine although they do not benefit from another. Common antihistamines include Hydroxyzine HCl , Chlorpheniramine 4mg and Diphenhydramine .
Immune-modulatorsCyclosporine Generic To Atopica stops the WBC from stimulating histamine release. Because WBC are part of the immune system, cyclosporine is called an immune modulator. Cyclosporine resolves symptoms in about half of all pets. It does have side effects, including upset stomachs, but its use may decrease the steroids your pet need. Cyclosporine is used for conditions in addition to allergies. For example, it is used to treat pets with a bleeding disorder called immune-mediated hemolytic anemia . With this disease, cyclosporine can be life saving.
In Conclusion Medications And Home Remedies Can Help To Soothe Your Cats Symptoms If Environmental Fixes Arent Possible
Unfortunately, its not always easy to identify what is bothering your cat. Obtaining a diagnosis of your cats allergy or intolerance can be time-consuming and challenging, and your cat will be forced to suffer longer without treatment.
If you think your cat may be suffering from a food or environmental intolerance, there may be a fast-working alternative to traditional elimination diets. We had the opportunity to try the Affordable Pet Test, an intolerance tests which identifies food and environmental triggers through a pet hair test.
For more information on how the Affordable Pet Test works and how it could help your cat, please read our review. If you purchase a test for your cat through our links, well receive a commission from the sale. You can also get 10% off your order if you use the coupon code: wildernesscat. We appreciate your support!
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Allergy Medicine For Cats To Relieve Discomfort
Although you can keep your cat from having an allergic reaction by identifying the allergen and keeping it away from your cat. However, they are never really cured. The therapies used for cat allergy treatment help manage and control the symptoms, prevent infections and relieve discomfort.
All cats suffering from allergic skin conditions are extremely itchy. The first thing your veterinarian is likely to prescribe is a corticosteroid to reduce inflammation and provide relief from their itchy skin. Many cats with allergic skin conditions also have secondary bacterial infections, so they may also be prescribed antibiotics to help clear it up.
Help keep your cat allergy-free by using veterinarian-approved medication for flea and tick control. You can also purchase dust-free cat litter and remove all possible allergens such as dust, pollen, smoke, and more. In addition, you can bathe your cat to give them some relief. Ask your veterinarian to recommend more ways you can help control your cat’s allergy symptoms and treatments you can give them at home.
Ultimately, the correct treatment for your cat’s allergies will depend on its underlying cause and will be determined once that cause is identified. Relief from the inflammation, itchiness, and hair loss can come from a variety of prescribed pet medicine that ranges from chewables, tablets or pills, liquids or topicals, or an injection.
Diagnostic Approach To Pruritic Cats
History & Causes
- Age of onset: If the patient is less than 6 months old at onset of clinical signs, parasite hypersensitivity and dermatophytosis are the most likely causes. In geriatric cats, typical causes are hyperthyroidism, T-cell lymphoma, and thymoma.
- Seasonal components: If there is a strong seasonal relationship with extended periods of normalcy, consider atopy, flea allergy dermatitis, or insect bite hypersensitivity. Remember, though, that atopy can be nonseasonal, with year-round clinical signs present.
- Lifestyle factors: Variables, such as recently introduced animals in the home , access to the outdoors, travel, and house guests, put cats at increased risk for contagious causes of pruritus.
- Response to corticosteroids: In general, atopy is considered highly responsive to steroids, while food allergy is less responsive. Many ectoparasitic causes of pruritus are minimally responsive to corticosteroid therapy. However, there will be exceptions to these typical findings.
Figure 1. Buster, a 14-year-old neutered male domestic shorthair, with a 4-month history of intense pruritus. Buster was 1 of 9 cats in the household. Five months prior to presentation, a new cat from a shelter had been introduced into the home. See Figure 2 for diagnosis.
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Is There A Vaccine For Cat Allergies
A new cat allergy vaccine is being tested and it’s administered to pets themselves, not people. A company called HypoPet AG recently announced in a press release that it was developing a vaccine that targets Fel d 1, a common feline allergen that affects close to 10 percent of the Western human population.
Final Thoughts What To Give Cats For Allergies
You cant completely prevent your cat from developing allergies. However, there are things that you can do to somehow limit their exposure to harmful allergens. You should keep your home clean, use unscented and dust-free cat litter, avoid the excessive use of deodorizers or perfumes, and do other measures to prevent your cat from developing allergic reactions. Also, know exactly what to give cats for allergies if they show symptoms. To guarantee their safety, contact your veterinarian right away and ask for advice.
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When You Get Home
Even after a short visit to a household with cats, wash your clothes in hot water to avoid bringing allergens into your home.
Pet allergens are easily spread, says the NIEHS. They can circulate in air and remain on carpets and furniture for months. They can also be carried on clothing into areas where there are no pets.
“When I’m home, everything I’ve brought, I need to wash thoroughly,” said Waldron. The water should be at least 130 degrees Fahrenheit.
Cat Allergies In Infants
There is ongoing debate among scientists whether infants who are exposed to animals at a very young age are destined to develop allergies, or if the opposite is true. Recent studies have come to conflicting conclusions. A 2015 study found that exposing infants to cats and dogs at home is associated with a higher risk of developing allergies during the first four years of the childs life.
On the other hand, a 2011 study found that babies who live with cats, especially during the first year of life, develop antibodies to the pet and were less likely to acquire an allergy later.
A 2017 study found that cats and dogs may provide a benefit by exposing babies to certain healthy bacteria early in life. The study concluded that babies exposed to a cat or dog in the home during pregnancy may have fewer problems with allergies in the future than babies who werent exposed.
Your doctor will be able to answer questions you may have about your baby and your cat. For children who are allergic, removing fabric toys and stuffed animals and replacing them with plastic or washable ones may help relieve symptoms.
Avoidance is best to prevent the allergies in the first place. But if you discover youre allergic to your cat, there are other options than getting rid of your pet. Consider these strategies for reducing your symptoms.
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The Best Medications For Cat Allergies Comparison Chart
Can Cats Have Allergies
Yes. Just like us, cats may also have allergic reactions to a lot of things. It could be from the things they touch, eat, or breathe in. They are prone to developing food, environmental, and seasonal allergies. Cats may be allergic to fleas, too. Their allergies can act up if their bodies become overly sensitive to the things that are in their environment.
While trying to process and eliminate the irritating substances that are triggering for them, they will likely show various symptoms, including runny eyes, itchiness, and sneezing. Most allergies affecting cats are considered mild, but there are still rare cases when the symptoms turn severe and fatal.
This makes it necessary for all feline owners to familiarize themselves with the signs of allergies in cats and what to do about it, so they can prevent and treat the problem before it worsens.
- Constant chewing at the tail or paws
Watch out for these symptoms so you will be able to give your cat the treatment that they need as soon as possible to help with their allergies.
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Allergy Symptoms In Pets
- Skin itching, indicated by redness of the skin, paw licking, scratching, or head shaking
- Respiratory symptoms like coughing, wheezing, or sneezing
- Digestive problems such as vomiting or diarrhea
Dr. Sypniewski says pet owners may also notice symptoms such as a pets hair loss or skin color changes and crusting. In rare cases, severe allergy can trigger anaphylaxis. If your pet has trouble breathing, seek emergency medical care immediately. This can be life-threatening.
What To Do If You Are Allergic To Cats
Once you have determined that furry felines are the cause of your allergic discomfort, there are some steps you can take to minimize the symptoms. Of course, if you do not own a cat then the obvious first solution is to avoid being around one. If the neighborhood kitty comes by to give you a friendly rub on the leg then you may have to gently shoo it away.
If you do not own a cat but you have friends and neighbors that do then you will need to keep that in mind. It is certainly possible for these folks to carry cat dander and fur on their person or in their clothes. Know who your cat owning friends are and make sure you check to see if they have recently handled their pet before coming to see you.
If you are a cat owner then you might need to dig deeper into the bag of tricks to keep from suffering the uncomfortable list of allergy symptoms. For starters, you can limit the direct exposure you have to your pet cat. Avoid hugging, carrying and lounging with your pet. If you do take the time to pet your kitty then you need to be sure to thoroughly wash your hands before you rub your eyes or scratch your nose.
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