Cat allergies are a common problem that can be difficult to overcome. If you’re struggling with cat allergies in your home, here are five tips that may help you.
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What is a Cat Allergy?
A cat allergy is an immune response to allergens in cats. These allergens can be present in saliva, hair, dander, and even feathers.
Allergies in cats are not uncommon, sometimes with many unpleasant side effects, from flea bite allergy to food intolerance. We inform you here how to recognize the respective symptoms, diagnose an allergy and which treatment options to distinguish.
Symptoms Of An Allergy In Cats
One of the most common symptoms is, without a doubt, itching. Cats usually rub or lick their face or paws in these cases and scratch their neck area. Itching, in turn, results in hair loss, crusting, and open wounds. The symptoms become more and more apparent and pronounced over time.
In severe cases, even reddish or yellowish swellings, ulcers appear in the abdominal area, on the hind legs, or in the face. Frequent vomiting and diarrhea are also possible consequences.
Flea Bites And Environmental Allergies In Cats
Flea bites and environmental allergies are among the most common allergies in cats. Also, an intolerance to environmental allergens such as pollen, dust mites, or mold spores leaves many furry noses and pet owners in despair. Depending on the allergy, symptoms only occur in the spring, and dust mites can make cat life difficult all year round.
Related: Signs Of Fleas In Cats – How To Prevent And Treat Infected Cat?
Food Allergies In Cats
Many cats are allergic to specific proteins, which is often the case with beef, fish, wheat, and eggs. But additives such as colorants and preservatives are often involved in the suffering of the fur noses. The typical symptoms of a food allergy include:
- Bare licked or scratched skin areas.
- A persistent itching
- Redness and extremely dry skin
- Vomiting and diarrhea
- In rare cases, constipation
- Allergenic substances in the household
There is almost nothing that can not cause allergies in the cat. Fragrances and dyes in certain household cleaners or textiles can also cause an unpleasant itch, rash, or discomfort. In general, chemical cleaners should not be used near your furry friends and not store them within easy reach.
Related: Foods Bad For Cats – Food You Should Never Give To Your Cat!
The Diagnosis Of Cat Allergies
After two to six weeks, cats with flea bite allergies usually respond well to complete flea control. Diagnosing feed allergies can generally use an elimination diet, which involves previously feeding unadministered protein sources. An improvement should occur with successful treatment after about four to six weeks.
If neither a flea bite nor a food allergy is present, then the quadrupeds should be examined for possible ectoparasites—these nest on the skin surface of the velvet paws.
In summer, ticks are widespread, which we can remove in most cases with tick forceps. If the parasites are also not the cause, it is advisable to test the four-legged friends for environmental allergies.
The veterinarian can diagnose the possible allergens with a skin test, and he shears the hair on the side of the chest and injects allergens in minimal doses into the skin.
Skin reactions occur only in allergic fur noses, which can be seen 15 to 30 minutes after the skin test. Before performing such a test, it is essential to remember that medications such as cortisone can affect the skin test.
Therefore, discontinue these two to eight weeks before the vet visit. For more detailed information, please get in touch with your veterinarian.
Related: Is Milk Useful Or Harmful For Cats?
Exclusion Diets And Other Measures In Cats
In case of flea bite allergy, regular flea control will help. Four-legged friends who are already seriously ill must also take medication prescribed by a vet.
If, on the other hand, the cat suffers from an environmental allergy, tablets are usually the simplest solution. These contain, among other things, certain fatty acids and antihistamines, which we can administer for years without any problems.
If your cat prefers excursions in nature to the home domicile, it is often impossible for many owners to feed the medication daily.
An alternative is desensitization therapy. Here the cat owner injects the allergen and concentrates at the beginning weekly and later every three to four weeks.
Cat Allergenic Proteins
If the cat has a food allergy, we should change the diet. In this case, pay particular attention to allergenic proteins. It is helpful to carry out an exclusion diet. Using the exclusion principle, one tries to find the allergy-causing substances.
Start the diet with only one type of meat that you have not fed the cat before. All treats and food supplements such as eggs and curd are not allowed during this feeding phase.
Of course, such an exclusion diet carries the risk that the four-legged friends will hunt for their food in the wild or, in the worst case, raid the cat bowls in the neighborhood.
It falsifies the test results. Do not feed dry food during this time because vegetable ingredients and other insufficiently labeled ingredients make the evaluation impossible.
If you want to do the exclusion diet with conventional cat food, it should at least be pure like duck or horse.
Feed the pet only the specified type of meat for the first six to eight weeks. During this period, the affected skin areas should heal completely.
Once the symptoms have disappeared, the next step is to feed your cat a different type of meat. If the allergy symptoms reappear during the first three weeks, return to the first type of meat since your quadruped is allergic to the chosen meat meal.
Remember that diarrhea and digestive problems may occur briefly during the food change. Animals will initially become accustomed to the change.
Once you have fed all the meats you have considered, you will usually be able to determine which meat or animal protein caused your cat’s allergies. A small notebook will help you to keep track of everything.
FAQ Cat Allergies
The most common cat allergy symptoms are a runny nose, itchy eyes, sneezing, and coughing.
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best way to eliminate cat allergies may vary depending on the individual. However, some successful methods include avoiding bringing cat allergens into the home, using a low-allergen diet for cats, and using natural remedies.
Cats can have allergies, but the prevalence of this problem is unknown. It’s also unknown why some cats are more prone to developing allergies than others.
The best way to eliminate cat allergies may vary depending on the individual. However, some recommendations include feeding your cat a low-allergen diet, giving them allergy medication, and using all-natural products. If you have cat allergies, you know how frustrating it can be to try to live in a house with cats. Fortunately, you can do a few things to reduce your risk of developing cat allergies.
What Is The Cause Of Cat Allergies?
- Having a family history of allergies
- Hormone changes during pregnancy
- Exposure to animals as a child
- Living in an environment with a lot of cats
What Are The Symptoms Of Cat Allergies?
- Itchy skin
- Hay fever-like symptoms (sneezing, coughing, runny nose)
- Asthma symptoms (wheezing, chest tightness)
- Life-threatening anaphylaxis
How Can I Reduce The Risk Of Developing Cat Allergies?
- Avoiding exposure to cats if you are allergic to them
- Avoiding allergens in your environment (dust, dander, animal hair)
- Keeping your cat indoors
- Avoiding foods that are known to cause allergies in cats (milk, eggs, peanuts)
What Can I Do If I Already Have Cat Allergies?
- Get allergy shots
- Use over-the-counter medication to relieve symptoms
- Avoid contact with cats as much as possible
- Keep a supply of antihistamines on hand
What Can I Do To Build Immunity To Cat Allergies?
Get vaccinated against cat viruses and avoid exposure to cat dander.
Practice good hygiene, wash your hands regularly, and avoid cat feces and urine exposure.
Allergies are primarily lifelong diseases. As you can see, four-legged friends can react allergically to many substances.
As a rule, we can’t cure allergies but can alleviate the symptoms. We must first diagnose which substances affect your beloved pets’ quality of life.
If your cat behaves conspicuously and shows one or more of the symptoms mentioned, you should visit the vet as soon as possible. Compared to humans, our four-legged friends can’t express their pain or health problems clearly.
Therefore, it is your task to always keep an eye on the possible behavioral abnormalities of your pet tiger.
We hope these tips help you to reduce cat allergies in your home.
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Last Updated on 22/06/2022 by Buzz This Viral