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How To Prevent Cat Allergies In Adults

How Do I Get Rid Of A Dog Allergy

How to Prevent Cat Allergy Symptoms — From the makers of ZYRTEC┬«

If you are allergic to cats, you can avoid them by feeding your dog before going to bed. Most dogs dont have cat allergies, but there are some breed that do, like the Ragdoll. Eating a small amount of cat food before going to bed may help your dog sleep, and will make you more likely to wake up feeling refreshed. Its also possible to get your dog tested for allergies to cats. One of the most common ways to do this is through a skin prick test, which is a simple procedure that is easily performed by your vet.

How Cat Allergies Are Diagnosed

There are two ways to test for any allergy, including to cats: skin testing and blood tests. There are two types of skin allergy tests. A skin prick test and an intradermal skin test. Both tests give fast results and tend to cost less than blood tests.

Certain medications can interfere with skin testing, so talk to your doctor about which test is best for you. Skin testing is usually done by an allergist due to the possibility of severe reactions during testing.

Landmark Purina Study: Pivotal Step Towards Reducing Cat Allergens

Allergies to cats are the most common animal-origin allergies in humans1 and affect approximately 1 in 5 adults worldwide.2

Cat owners may be encouraged to avoid contact with their cat on an allergists recommendation, but often go to great lengths to keep their cat. At the very least, they may be forced to spend less time with their cat. They will often have to exclude their cat from the bedroom and take medications to try to manage their allergic symptoms.

Cat allergies can also be a barrier to cat ownership by preventing adoption and potentially leading to cat rehoming or relinquishment.3-6 This is why Purina scientists have dedicated more than 10 years to researching how to manage cat allergens and improve the lives of cat lovers and their feline companions.

Watch the video and explore how we are addressing the problem

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Can Being Allergic To Pets Kill You

Anaphylaxis is a rare but life-threatening allergic reaction, usually caused by things such as insect stings or food items and even pets. It is a sudden and severe allergic reaction that occurs within minutes of exposure and requires immediate medical attention. Without treatment, anaphylaxis can get worse very quickly and lead to death within 15 minutes.

When someone comes into contact with an allergen capable of causing anaphylaxis, they might experience symptoms such as:

  • Face swelling

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How To Get Rid Of Your Cat Allergy Symptoms

How to Clean to Prevent Cat Allergies

Furry pet allergies are common. Dog and cat allergies affect 10%-20% of the world’s population and the rates are increasing. These allergies can not only have uncomfortable symptoms, but they can be distressing if you’re an animal lover or have a family pet.

Cat allergies are an allergic reaction to some of the proteins that are found in:

  • Cat urine.
  • Cat saliva.
  • Cat skin cells.

Thorrun Govind, pharmacist and chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, explains that generally cat allergy symptoms are caused by dander, which are dead flakes of their skin from shedding. Unlike cat hair, dander often isn’t visible, but it can settle on floors, surfaces, and furniture in homes.

Adult cats self-groom and lick themselves often and their saliva tends to flake off as they grow, as it transfers to their skin and coat. This saliva contains a protein called Fel d 1, which some cats produce more of than others hence why some people might experience more severe cat allergy symptoms with certain types of cat. It could also explain a lack of reaction to kittens, as they don’t self-groom as much.

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What About Hypoallergenic Cat Breeds

Unfortunately, there is no breed of cat that is hypoallergenic, including those without much fur, like the Sphynx. That’s because the allergen isn’t the fur, it’s proteins in the saliva, urine, and skin.

Some breeds are widely accepted as being less likely to trigger allergies, so perhaps they naturally have less Fel D 1, but this hasn’t been confirmed scientifically. There is no breed of cat that can be counted on not to trigger a person’s cat allergies. As noted above, each individual cat varies as to how much Fel D 1 he produces, so a person who’s allergic might have more or fewer issues with some cats.

Should I Keep My Cat If I’m Allergic To It

There is not a single correct answer to this question. But before you decide whether to keep your cat, you must make sure that it is your cat causing the allergic reaction. You don’t want to go through the stress and upset of rehoming a much loved pet if your allergic reaction is caused by dust mites.

You have to decide whether the severity of your allergic reaction means you need to re-home your cat.

In some cases, the symptom-easing tips included above are enough to make living with a cat sustainable, but other people find that their allergic reaction makes living with a cat unbearable.

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What Can You Do To Reduce Allergens

Reducing the allergens in the home starts with a few simple changes. Davis recommends investing in a quality HEPA air purifier, which will reduce the allergens floating around in the air. You may also want to regularly vacuum the furniture and the carpets. Vacuums like the Bissell Cleanview Swivel Pet Vacuum Cleaner are powerful enough to get up even the longest, thickest pet hair. Pet hair accumulation contributes to the allergens, so removing it helps to reduce allergens.

The other option is to remove carpet entirely. “Hardwood floors would be a better choice of flooring than carpet,” says Davis. Carpet fibers hold onto dirt, dust, dander, and hair. Regular vacuuming and seasonal shampooing are the only ways to deeply clean the carpet and remove allergens. But hardwood floors just need swept and mopped. And fur remains loose over the floor so that it is easy and quick to remove when cleaning.

And finally, regular grooming or baths for your cat will also help reduce allergens. Find a good brush and make it as fun and enjoyable as possible for your kitty during grooming time. Cats can groom themselves fairly well, but long-haired kitties need extra help to keep their fur smooth and mat-free. An occasional bath will also remove any dust or other grime found on their skin, but make sure to use safe and veterinarian-approved shampoo for your cat and don’t get any soap in their eyes or ears. Then,, wrap the cat in a towel to help them to dry off.

Cat Allergy Treatments & Remedies

How to Reduce Allergies Towards Cats : Treating Allergies
  • Designate your bedroom as a cat-free zone. Begin your program of allergen reduction by washing bedding, drapes and pillows. Better yet, replace them. Use plastic covers that are designed to prevent allergens from penetrating on your mattress and pillows. Allergen-proof covers are available from medical supply outlets. Dont expect results overnight. Cat allergens are one-sixth the size of pollens, and it may take months to reduce them significantly.
  • Restrict your cats access to designated areas inside your home. If you have a safe outdoor enclosure, allow your cat some time outside where dander will waft away in the wind. Brush your cat in the fresh-air enclosure to prevent loose, allergen-carrying hair from dispersing through your home.
  • Eliminate allergen traps such as upholstered furniture and rugs. Carpet can accumulate up to 100 times the amount of cat allergens as hardwood flooring, so replacing the wall-to-wall with wood will keep allergens from accumulating as much. If ripping up the carpet is not an option, have it steam cleaned as often as needed.
  • Vacuuming blows as many allergens through the air as it removes, so when you vacuum, use an allergen-proof vacuum cleaner bag or a vacuum cleaner with a high efficiency particulate arresting filter.
  • Get tested. An allergy specialist can determine the exact source of your allergic reactions by a simple prick of the skin on your arm or back.
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    Infections Caused By Cats

    Allergies are a manifestation of the immune system’s over-reaction to a non-infectious substance. But you can also get an infection due to cat exposure, such as ringworm, or an infection due to a cat scratch.

    A parasitic infection caused byToxoplasma gondii is spread by cat feces. This parasite is very dangerous for pregnant women because it can cause birth defects.

    Infections caused by cats are different than allergies.

    The Kinds Of Cat Allergies

    Cat allergies are common, especially in children. If you have a cat, you may have an allergy to its saliva, hair, dander, or other substances. Cat allergies can cause rashes, hives, congestion, and other symptoms. Most people who have cat allergies are also allergic to dogs. And many people are allergic to other animals such as bees and horses. But, its important to note that there are some animals that arent usually associated with allergies. These include snakes, fish, and turtles.

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    What Causes An Allergy To Cats

    While it is commonly thought that cat hair causes allergy symptoms, the truth is more complex its whats on the hair that is the issue. In fact cat allergies is caused by a protein produced in a cats saliva and sebaceous glands, which is then spread onto the cats hair and skin during grooming. Whenever a cat sheds their fur, hair and dander , the sticky protein attached is transferred into the environment. This often leads to the allergy symptoms you experience be it coughing, sneezing or watering eyes!

    However, cat hair can also act as a carrier of other airborne allergens: pollen, dust mites and mould, which can also cause allergic symptoms in individuals with hay fever, asthma or eczema

    How To Keep A Cat If You Are Allergic To Cats

    How to Cope with Cat Allergies

    This article was co-authored by Alan O. Khadavi, MD, FACAAI. Dr. Alan O. Khadavi is a Board Certified Allergist and a Pediatric Allergy Specialist based in Los Angeles, California. He holds a BS in biochemistry from the State University of New York at Stony Brook and an MD from the State University of New York Health Science Center at Brooklyn. Dr. Khadavi completed his pediatric residency at Schneider Childrens Hospital in New York, and then went on to complete his allergy and immunology fellowship and pediatric residency at Long Island College Hospital. He is board certified in adult and pediatric allergy/immunology. Dr. Khadavi is a Diplomate of the American Board of Allergy and Immunology, a Fellow of the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology , and a member of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology . Dr. Khadavi’s honors include Castle Connollys list of Top Doctors 2013-2020, and Patient Choice Awards “Most Compassionate Doctor” in 2013 & 2014.There are 10 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 21,399 times.

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    A Problem That Affects Millions

    Cat allergies affect 10% to 20% of adults. More than 90% of them react to Fel d 1. About 5% of adults are allergic to dogs, but many substances are involved in those allergies. That makes modifying dogs a more complicated project. Researchers say allergies to furry animals are increasing.

    And, there is no way to totally escape Fel d 1. It rides on peoples clothes to work and school. Its everywhere, James Wedner, an allergist at Washington University in St. Louis, said. He once saw five allergy sufferers who worked in a brand new office building. None had cats. He tested the building for mold, cockroaches and mice and found nothing. Then he found incredibly high levels of Fel d 1. Other workers were bringing it in, he said.

    No one knows what role Fel d 1 plays in the cats body, which is why any effort to get rid of it has to look at the effect on cats. Kornreich said there has been speculation that Fel d 1 might protect skin from pathogens. Another possibility is that it is involved in chemical signaling. Nicole Brackett, a postdoctoral researcher with Indoor Biotechnologies, sequenced the genes that make Fel d 1 in 50 domestic cats as well as some big and wild cats. She said the genes are not well-conserved in the domestic cats, a sign that they likely are not essential.

    Purina says its tests show its food is safe.

    He also said that patients not in studies volunteer that the food has helped them.

    How To Prevent Allergies In Cats

    There is no way to prevent a cat from developing allergies but you can often help to limit its exposure to allergens. Keeping a clean home, using dust-free and unscented cat litter, not using excessive perfumes or deodorizers, not smoking in the house, using regular flea preventatives, and using metal or ceramic food and water dishes can help prevent your cat from having an allergic reaction. If you notice signs of allergies in your cat, it is best to consult with a veterinarian.

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    Allergies To Cats: Symptoms Treatment And Causes

    Although our feline friends are so fondly regarded that theyre found in an amazing one third of all households, cats are also the leading driver of pet allergies in the US.

    Contrary to popular belief, cat dander and saliva rather than fur are behind most allergies to cats.

    Avoiding cats altogether is the best way to minimize symptoms, but even then, there are no guarantees. With more than eighty-five million cats in US homes and nearly as many strays, just being out in public may expose you to enough cat dander so its important to be aware of what you can do about it.

    The good news is, if you like spending time around cats, or simply want to get on with your day to day without experiencing symptoms, preventative measures and treatment can help reduce or relieve symptoms.

    This might allow you to enjoy Fluffys company again going forward or at least not worry about it.

    Recent Studies For Cat Allergy Cures

    Signs of Allergies to Cats : Treating Allergies

    For the first time ever, science is offering hope to cat-allergy sufferers everywhere. In just a few years, your options may extend beyond HEPA filters, asthma inhalers, allergy medications and avoidance.

    Two studies have discovered different ways to tackle the problem at its root. The idea is to neutralize the feline allergen itself instead of trying to minimize a persons allergic response.

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    Give Your Kitties Their Own Room For The Evening

    Though giving your cat regular baths can reduce allergens on their fur by up to 84 percent, studies have shown that youd have to bathe your cats every two or three days to get those results, and baths cant control the allergens released once they go back to grooming themselves. Makers of anti-dander topical solutions such as Allerpet claim that they can reduce the effect of pet allergens, but there isnt much recent data to support that, and its not clear to me that those really work, Dr. Rosenstreich says.

    Thanks to oil glands on their heads and necks, cats have especially high concentrations of allergens in those areas and every piece of furniture they twine around or human they head-butt helps to get cat dander circulating around your home all over again. The most effective way to keep your little buddies from aggravating your guests allergies is to isolate them for the duration of the visit with everything they need to be comfortable, of course.

    Keep Your Cat Out Of Your Bedroom

    You might be accustomed to snuggling with your kitty in bed, but sleeping with your cat when youre allergic will definitely cause problems. Keeping your cat out of your bedroom wont eliminate allergens from the room, but it will cut down on them drastically and should allow you to breathe comfortably.

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    Diagnosing Allergies In Cats

    It can be difficult to pinpoint what a cat is allergic to. Elimination diets and exclusion trials with different cleaning products, food dishes, beds, and medications may be necessary to discover what causes an allergic reaction if the trigger isn’t obvious. Some blood and skin tests are available for detecting certain allergens.

    Cat Allergen: Its Everywhere

    Purina launches ground

    The major culprit in cat allergies is Fel d1, a protein excreted in the cats skin, saliva, and urine. When cats lick themselves, they deposit Fel d1 on their fur. When the cat sheds, the allergens on the hair and dander spread.

    And do they ever spread. Fel d1 proteins are small, so they remain suspended in the air. Fel d1 is also sticky, and takes a long time to decompose, Blaiss explains. The proteins cling to surfaces like draperies, carpets, furniture, bedding, clothing, even walls and ceilings.

    Because of this, cat allergens are notoriously difficult to remove from a home, even with cleaning and vacuuming. Research has shown that there are cat proteins in almost all U.S. homes, even in homes where there are no cats. In school classrooms, kids can bring in enough Fel d1 on their clothes and backpacks to trigger asthma symptoms in their allergic classmates.

    Bathing cats can cut down on Fel d1 in the fur, but only for a day or so. Studies have found female cats produce a lower level of allergens than males, while neutered males produce lower levels than unneutered males but they all produce plenty.

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