Am I Allergic To My Cat?
You may be allergic to your cat if you notice symptoms such as swelling and itching around your nose and eyes, congestion, or a rash on your face, neck, or chest. An allergist can diagnose a cat allergy with a skin test. While it is bad news for a cat owner to be allergic to their pet, the good news is that, in most cases, there are simple treatments that will allow you to keep your feline friend in your home.
It's Not Just The Fur
You could be allergic to your cat's fur, but that's not the only thing that can cause cat allergy symptoms. Your symptoms may also be triggered by:
- Cat Dander
It doesn't take a lot of exposure; breathing in or touching pet dander may be all it takes to set off your allergies.
I Think I'm Allergic: When to See a Doctor
Self-diagnosis is never a good idea, and Dr. Google has led many people astray with either misinformation or improperly applied information. The symptoms of a cat allergy are very similar to those of a cold or other allergies. Rather than rushing to judgement and blaming Fluffy, make an appointment with an allergist. If you are allergic to your cat, the doctor can likely prescribe something to bring you some relief.
If the cat isn't to blame, the allergist will be able to help you pinpoint what is making you miserable.
Common treatments include:
- Corticosteroid Nasal Sprays
- Cromolyn Sodium
- Allergy Shots
Many people are opposed to taking prescription medication. If your symptoms are fairly mild, it's possible to treat your cat allergies by rinsing your nasal passages with saline water or taking over-the-counter decongestant sprays.
If you suspect an allergy to your cat, don't panic. Visit your doctor to be sure that's what you're dealing with, and then work on treatments that allow you to keep your pet without suffering with allergy symptoms. For more help, check out Tips to reduce allergies to pets on our blog.
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