What medication to take for cat allergies
Some people with severe allergies may experience life-threatening reactions, known as anaphylaxis or anaphylactic shock.
If you’re at risk of this, you’ll be given special injectors containing a medicine called adrenaline to use in an emergency.
If you develop symptoms of anaphylaxis, such as difficulty breathing, you should inject yourself in the outer thigh before seeking emergency medical assist.
Find out more about treating anaphylaxis
Medicines for mild allergies are available from pharmacies without a prescription.
But always enquire a pharmacist or GP for advice before starting any new medicine, as they’re not suitable for everyone.
Lotions and creams
Red and itchy skin caused by an allergic reaction can sometimes be treated with over-the-counter creams and lotions, such as:
- calamine lotion to reduce itchiness
- moisturising creams (emollients) to hold the skin moist and protect it from allergens
- steroids to reduce inflammation
Antihistamines are the main medicines for allergies.
They can be used:
- as and when you notice the symptoms of an allergic reaction
- to prevent allergic reactions – for example, you may take them in the morning if you own hay fever and you know the pollen count is high that day
Antihistamines can be taken as tablets, capsules, creams, liquids, eye drops or nasal sprays, depending on which part of your body is affected by your allergy.
Decongestants can be used as a short-term treatment for a blocked nose caused by an allergic reaction.
They can be taken as tablets, capsules, nasal sprays or liquids.
Do not use them for more than a week at a time, as using them for endless periods can make your symptoms worse.
Steroid medicines can assist reduce inflammation caused by an allergic reaction.
They’re available as:
Sprays, drops and feeble steroid creams are available without a prescription.
Stronger creams, inhalers and tablets are available on prescription from a GP.
Strategies to Reduce Pet Allergies
If your child’s allergies aren’t too severe, you may be capable to take some steps to reduce your child’s symptoms and hold your pet. For instance:
Keep pets out of the bedroom.
Make your child’s room a pet-free zone and be certain to hold it clean. To hold the room pet dander- and pollen-free, install a high-efficiency air filter and air purifier. Remember to change the filters frequently.
Cover your child’s bed with additional protection. You can purchase dust mite covers for your child’s pillow, blanket, and mattress. This will also assist hold out dust mites, another potential allergy trigger, in addition to allergens love pet dander.
Go for hard surfaces.
Where you can, replace upholstered surfaces with non-fabric or easily washable materials. Pet dander sticks to upholstery, drapes, curtains, and carpeting more easily than it does to surfaces such as wood, vinyl, or tile. Plus, the latter are easier to clean. For this reason, you also shouldn’t let your allergic kid sleep with stuffed animals, Dr. Nassef adds. If you must own carpet in your child’s bedroom or elsewhere in your home, select a low-pile one and own it steam-cleaned regularly.
Bathe your pet weekly.
Weekly baths can significantly reduce the quantity of allergy-causing dander your pet sheds.
If possible, enquire a non-allergic member of your household to bathe the pet and be certain to wash that person’s clothes afterward. Wearing gloves may also assist. Enquire your veterinarian to recommend the best soaps and shampoos. Caution: Bathing too frequently can own the opposite effect. It can dry your pet’s skin and cause the animal to shed more dander.
Teach your kid to wash his hands with soap and water after touching the pet. Washing helps prevent the spread of allergens to your child’s nose, eyes, and mouth — which is especially significant if your kid gets a rash from having been licked by your pet, Nassef says.
Talk to your allergist about treatment.
“Medications work for allergy symptoms regardless of the trigger — pollen, pet dander, etc.,” Nassef says. “But not every medications work equally well for every symptoms.” That’s why it’s significant to work with your doctor and tailor your child’s allergy medications to his or her symptoms.
Consult your veterinarian. Your veterinarian can recommend a diet for your pet that’s wealthy in vitamins and minerals, which can assist your pet’s skin retain its moisture and not shed as much. Love people, pets can benefit from omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, according to the Partnership for Animal Welfare in Greenbelt, Maryland.
Every family has to decide for themselves whether they can manage their children’s pet allergies with a cat or dog, Nassef says.
“The best solution for pet allergies is to not own a pet,» she says, «but numerous people consider pets part of their family and getting rid of the pet is out of the question.”
Cat allergy got you in mew-sery? This news may change your life fur-ever.
A team of scientists from the Swiss firm HypoPet AG has developed a vaccine to combat the feline-produced protein Fel d 1, to which 10% of humans are allergic, according to their press release.
After analyzing data from four separate studies involving a entire of 54 kitties, the antidote, called HypoCat, has already demonstrated its success.
Our HypoCat vaccine is capable to produce high levels of antibodies in cats, writes Gary Jennings, CEO of HypoPet AG, in the statement.
These antibodies can bind and neutralize the Fel d 1 allergen produced by the animals.
Researchers tell they are pressing ahead with registration studies and discussions with European and US regulators to bring the drug to market, which would certainly change lives.
The vaccine would assist those with cat allergies avoid typical reactions such as rashes, nasal congestion and irritated eyes, while also lowering their risk of exacerbating asthma or developing chronic respiratory issues.
Cat lovers who sneeze and sniffle around their feline friends might one day discover at least partial relief in a can of cat food.
New research suggests that feeding cats an antibody to the major allergy-causing protein in cats renders some of the protein, called Fel d1, unrecognizable to the human immune system, reducing an allergic response.
After cats were fed the antibody for 10 weeks, the quantity of athletic Fel d1 protein on the cats’ hair dropped by 47 percent on average, researchers from pet food–maker Nestlé Purina report in the June Immunity, Inflammation and Disease.
And in a little pilot study, 11 people allergic to cats experienced substantially reduced nasal symptoms and less itchy, scratchy eyes when exposed in a test chamber to hair from cats fed the antibody diet, compared with cats fed a control diet. The preliminary findings were presented in Lisbon, Portugal at the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology Congress in June.
The Fel d1 protein is produced in cats’ salivary and sebaceous glands.
Cats transfer the protein to their hair when they groom by licking themselves and excrete it in their urine. Humans are then exposed to it on cat hair and dander — dead skin — or in the litter box.
Cat allergies plague up to 20 percent of people, and Fel d1 is responsible for 95 percent of allergic reactions to cats.
Doctors can’t give humans antibodies orally because the molecules are broken below in the gut and never reach their targets, says Michael Blaiss, executive medical director of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology and an allergist and immunologist at the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta. So Purina’s approach to the cat allergy problem is exciting and unusual, he says.
In cats, the antibody to Fel d1 — which is derived from eggs and added to cat food — has its effect in the mouth, neutralizing the protein in saliva, says Ebenezer Satyaraj, director of molecular nutrition at Purina.
This way, the antibody disables Fel d1 “after its production by the cat, but before it spreads to the cat’s hair and dander — and before a response occurs in an individual sensitized to cat allergens,” says Satyaraj, who is leading the cat allergen research.
Since the role of Fel d1 in cat physiology is unknown, this approach doesn’t interfere with the normal production of Fel d1 by the cat, Satyaraj says.
So far, he adds, safety tests own found no harm to cats fed the antibody.
Blaiss expects that the new treatment may assist people with mild cat allergies. But those with severe symptoms are unlikely to discover relief from cutting the quantity of athletic allergen only in half. Some people can’t tolerate any quantity of the protein without symptoms, he says. What’s more, diverse cats can produce wildly varying amounts of Fel d1 naturally. “So it just depends on the [Fel d1] levels of the cat and the symptomology of the patient,” he says.
In addition, Fel d1 is known to be a “sticky” protein, Blaiss says.
It tends to stick around and accumulate in the home over time. So even with feeding a cat the antibody-laced food, “it could just take more time to build to a level that triggers an allergic reaction.”
Purina is not yet offering products containing the antibody, Satyaraj says, but plans further research to determine its effectiveness for reducing cat allergens in the home.
Questions or comments on this article? E-mail us at [email protected]
A version of this article appears in the August 31, issue of Science News.
Immunotherapy may be an option for a little number of people with certain severe and persistent allergies who are unable to control their symptoms using the measures above.
The treatment involves being given occasional little doses of the allergen, either as an injection, or as drops or tablets under the tongue, over the course of several years.
The injection can only be performed in a specialist clinic under the supervision of a doctor, as there’s a little risk of a severe reaction.
The drops or tablets can generally be taken at home.
The purpose of treatment is to help your body get used to the allergen so it does not react to it so severely.
This will not necessarily cure your allergy, but it’ll make it milder and mean you can take less medicine.
Treating specific allergic conditions
Use the links under to discover information about how specific allergies and related conditions are treated:
Sheet final reviewed: 22 November
Next review due: 22 November
Like people, our feline friends can develop allergies. This happens when their immune systems become sensitive to substances present in their surroundings.
Known as allergens, these irritating substances may not annoy you or other animals in your home, but as your cat’s body tries to get rid of the offending substances, he might show every kinds of symptoms.
Because there is such a wide variety of allergens, cat allergies are generally divided into 3 main categories: flea allergy, environmental allergies (atopic dermatitis), and food allergy. Flea allergy and environmental allergies – the ones that cause “hay fever” symptoms in humans – are the most common. However, cats often own multiple allergies, so a thorough examination by your veterinarian or veterinary dermatologist is recommended.
Allergic kitties are often extremely itchy and own skin problems associated with allergic dermatitis.
They also might exhibit some of these symptoms:
- Snoring caused by an inflamed throat
- Sneezing, coughing, and wheezing – especially if the cat has asthma
- Itchy, runny eyes
- Ear infections
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Paw chewing or swollen, sensitive paws
There are a variety of allergens that cause these symptoms:
- Prescription drugs
- Pollen, grass, plants, mold, mildew, and other organic substances
- Perfumes and colognes
- Household cleaning products
- Fleas or flea-control products
- Some cat litters
Gastrointestinal symptoms generally accompany a food allergy, so it is significant to avoid feeding your cat food to which he or she has a known allergy.
Also, allergies tend to be more common among outdoor cats because they are exposed to a wider range of potential allergens, especially from plants and organic matter.
If something appears to be making your kitty miserable, the best thing to do is pay your veterinarian a visit. He or she will initially do a finish history and physical exam for your cat to determine the source of the allergies.
If your vet suspects your cat has allergies, he might desire to act out blood tests or experiment with your kitty’s diet to narrow below the cause. Or, if your vet thinks your cat has a skin allergy, your cat might be referred to a veterinary dermatologist.
Treatment & Prevention
The best way to treat your cat’s allergies is to remove the allergens from his or her environment. For instance, if your cat’s allergies are caused by fleas, using veterinarian-recommended flea and tick preventatives can eliminate the cause. If the problem is cat litter, substituting your normal litter for a dust-free alternative could do the trick. In fact, this might assist correct a bigger problem if your cat’s been missing his or her litter box.
When it comes to pollen, fungus, mold, or dust, bathing your cat a couple of times per week can assist alleviate itching.
Your veterinarian can recommend an appropriate shampoo to assist you avoid drying out your cat’s skin.
A diagnosis of food allergies may require you to provide your cat with a prescription diet or even home-cooked meals free of the offending allergens. Your veterinarian will provide recommendations as to the best course of action. It is possible that your cat will need dietary supplements to ensure he gets every the vital nutrients he needs.
Medication is sometimes prescribed for cats in case certain allergens cannot be removed from the environment. Medications include:
- Antihistamines as a preventative
- Cortisone, steroids or allergy injections for airborne pollens
- Flea prevention products
How do allergies affect asthma?
If your cat is allergic to environmental pollutants, it may worsen your cat’s asthma.
In this case, your vet may prescribe medications that open your cat’s airway for the short-term; endless term solutions include corticosteroids. And here’s a excellent reminder: cigarette smoke is bad for your cat, especially if your cat has asthma.
If you own any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian – they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.
It can be terribly upsetting to study that your kid is allergic to your family pet — but it’s not unusual.
Up to 30 percent of people with allergies own allergic reactions to cats and dogs, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA).
Contrary to favorite belief, it’s not the pets’ hair that makes a kid sneeze and wheeze. It’s the proteins found in their urine, saliva, or pet dander, according to the AAFA. The proteins can stick to surfaces of walls, furniture, and clothing and stay there, at full strength, for a endless time. A pet also can bring other allergens, such as pollen, into your home.
“The first law of allergies is, if you’re allergic to something, stay away from it,” says Mark Holbreich, MD, an allergist and immunologist with Allergy and Asthma Consultants in Indianapolis.
When it’s your pet, though, that’s hard to do. But if the allergies are severe, says the American Academy of Pediatrics, you may own to discover your pet a new home.
Symptoms of children’s pet allergies include a stuffy nose, itchy, watery eyes, and wheezing. Some people can own an asthma attack if their allergies flare, the AAFA says. If your kid experiences these symptoms after coming in contact with your dog or cat, own your kid tested.
“Testing is extremely important,” says Mervat Nassef, MD, a pediatric allergist and immunologist at NewYork-Presbyterian in New York City. If you might own to give up your pet, you desire to be certain that your kid isn’t allergic to something else.
“Other allergies can give you similar symptoms,” Dr. Nassef says.
It’s also significant to note that some animals may be more allergy-friendly than others. However, there’s no such thing as a hypoallergenic cat or dog, according to the American College of Asthma, Allergy & Immunology. “Small dogs that don’t shed produce less dander, but your kid still can be allergic to them,” Dr. Holbreich says.
Avoiding exposure to allergens
The best way to hold your symptoms under control is often to avoid the things you’re allergic to, although this is not always practical.
For example, you may be capable to help manage:
- hay fever by staying indoors and avoiding grassy areas when the pollen count is high
- food allergies by being careful about what you eat
- animal allergies by keeping pets exterior as much as possible and washing them regularly
- mould allergies by keeping your home dry and well-ventilated, and dealing with any damp and condensation
- dust mite allergies by using allergy-proof duvets and pillows, and fitting wooden floors rather than carpets