Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, have you ever heard of these terms? If yes then you might suffered from the severe pet allergy. which results in skin inflammation. Do you feel itchy after you have petted your fluffy? Do you feel like scratching your skin may provide you relief? Probably you would have so many questions in your mind related to pets allergies. Most asked questions are…
- How do I know if I am allergic to cats?
- How can I stop my dog allergies?
- How do you know if you’re allergic to your pet?
- What are symptoms of pet allergies?
- Are You Allergic to Your Pet?
- How to deal with pet allergies
- Can you be allergic to dog hair?
What is Pet Allergy?
Allergies to furry pets can be commonly seen in the people who have other allergies like asthma, stuffy nose etc. In the USA, 3 out of 10 people approximately have allergic reactions to pets. To be very clear not every animal will trigger your eczema but unfortunately below mentioned pets can aggravate the skin condition. These may include:
It is important to keep track of how your body may react during the periods of exposure as compared to the times of isolation from the pets.
What are the symptoms of Pet Allergy?
- red, itchy eyes
- stuffy, running nose
- wheezing, coughing
- rashes or hives
- itchy skin
- redness of skin
Symptoms of a cat allergy might develop in quite a few minutes or take hours to appear. About 20% to 30% of people with allergic asthma have severe flare-ups after getting in contact with our pet.
What are Pet Allergens?
Allergy to pets is an allergic reaction to proteins found in the skin cells, saliva or urine of an animal. Signs of pet allergy include those common with hay fever, sneezing and runny nose. Some people may also have signs of asthma, wheezing and breathing difficulties.
Most commonly, pet allergy is triggered by exposure to dead skin flakes (dander) from a pet. Any furry animal can be a source of allergy for pets, but pet allergies are most commonly associated with cats and dogs.
Proteins: Proteins in the urine, stool and saliva of the animals are considered as allergens. These spread over the hair of animals and are usually known to cause allergic reactions and eczema in humans. It can be spreaded into the air and around the home with their skin cells.
Dander: It is considered as the natural shedding of skin cells in animals. These can be easily spread all around the home and surrounding areas as they are lightweight and can attach to the animal’s hair. Power dander that coats the feathers of particular birds may also trigger allergic reaction and due to the nature of birds movements those can be easily driven into the air.
Sebaceous glands: The glands are present in the skin of the animals and are generally responsible for secreting an oily sebum that keeps the skin waterproofed and hydrated. This combines with the dust particles, other allergens and becomes airborne.
If you are allergic to a pet, the best strategy is to avoid or minimize exposure to the animal. Medications or other treatments may be needed to relieve symptoms and manage asthma.
How to Manage and treat pet allergy?
Which allergy medicine is best for pet allergies?
Avoiding the allergen can surely help, but when its impossible, the following treatments will become a life saver:
- Antihistamines, such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl), loratadine (Claritin) or cetirizine (Zyrtec)
- Corticosteroid nasal sprays such as fluticasone (Flonase) or mometasone (Nasonex)
- Over-the-counter decongestant sprays
- Cromolyn sodium, which prevents the release of immune system chemicals and may reduce symptoms
- Leukotriene inhibitors, such as montelukast (Singulair)
- Allergy shots known as immunotherapy (a series of shots that desensitize you to an allergen)
How to prevent pet allergies (Cat and dog Allergies)?
- Never let your pets sleep on your bed and keep them away from your bedrooms
- Minimize exposure to pets directly
- Carpets usually trap dander so ensure to keep floors bare
- Clean your pet’s bed as that are the main dander spots
- Use vacuum with HEPA filter. Vacuum weekly
- Bathe your pets regularly
- Clear away the clutter, the skin shed by the pets that may trigger skin inflammation
- Cover vents with a cheesecloth as they can trap the allergens before they’re spread in the air
- Have someone to brush your pets outside the homes to remove dander
- Prepare with the medication
- Change your clothes after prolonged exposure with your pets
- Talk to your doctor
- Avoid hugging or kissing your pets
- Wash your hands properly to remove germs after spending time with your pets