Is Anyone Else Allergic to Your Cats?

Introvertigo

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Not sure which category to post this, but here goes: Yes, I'm allergic to cats and I have two of them. If I was thinking 💯% logically I probably shouldn't have gotten them in the first place, but I don't think I've ever been that logical about anything. My emotions usually end up winning out over 'good old common sense' any day. The thing is, I could be around 4 or 5 neighborhood feral cats every day and be fine, no allergies whatsoever. So I thought it would be a similar situation if I had my own, but no such luck.

And at the risk of possibly getting banned from this site, I have a confession to make: I've always been a dog person. The only reason I have cats and not a dog is because dogs aren't allowed where I live {although this arbitrary rule may only be because the landlord happens to be very much a cat person}.

I'm a lifelong animal lover and always had a variety of pets growing up. No cats though ~ not since I was 5 years old and Tiger was given away when my allergies became apparent. I've always seemed to end up living in places that didn't allow pets at all, and I was really missing not being around any animals. Didn't know when or if I'd be able to move to a more dog-friendly place anytime soon, so I just decided last summer to get a kitty...and then another kitty to keep the first one company, because I kept reading about 'single kitten syndrome' and of course didn't want to subject my poor kitty to that. Although if I think about it logically for a change (ha!) then that means there must be an awful lot of cats that grew up with the dreaded SKS because well, there's a helluva lot of single-cat households, ya know?!🤔

With all that said however, now these two scallywags are like the kids I never had. I don't even want to think about having to re-home them, but an allergy~induced respiratory issue has at times caused me to consider it. They've been eating Pro Plan Live Clear by Purina, which is the only cat food made to reduce the allergens in cat hair and dander. It seems to be helping somewhat although I'm unsure how much; and as it's commercial dry food I don't really feel good about giving it to them. I'm pretty much on the raw food bandwagon and really want to transition them to that way of eating, although tried it before and they wouldn't touch it.. they are EXTREMELY picky, but that's a whole other post🥴

I've kinda rambled on when what I really want to know is this: Folks out there with allergies to your cats, how do you deal with it? Pills, shots, or some other method? All suggestions & ideas are more than welcome {especially if they're not rehoming} and thanks SO SO SO MUCH!!😻
 

fionasmom

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Search Results for Query: allergic to cats

If you scroll through this list of threads, you will find some about people who have cat allergies. Others are about cats with allergies to one thing or another. Others will probably respond as well.

I have mild cat allergies, diagnosed and even came up on one of those DNA tests that you order online. I don't need medication but do have nasal congestion from time to time, scratchy throat, sneezing, runny nose, postnasal drip. These are not present 24/7, so I live with them. Oddly, I don't have an allergy to dogs though. I was given one nasal spray, on one occasion, which did not seem to make much of a difference and have one eye drop that I use from time to time. I don't know if this makes any difference, but there is no carpeting in the house, few fabric window coverings, and I mop the floors daily. You mentioned that you rent, so might have some limitations in what you can do.

https://vet.osu.edu/sites/vet.osu.e...df/education/mph-vph/allergic to your cat.pdf
You may already be on top of most of this. How severe is your allergic reaction? That is probably a huge part of this, although I understand that you want to keep your cats.
 

denice

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I like dogs to but I can't say I like one more then another, I love each for the wonderful pets they are.

I fortunately haven't yet developed any allergies but this comes up quite often. Wiping the cats down with a damp cloth every few days helps. Allergies are usually triggered by a protein in the saliva, that builds up from the cats cleaning themselves. A lot of vacuuming helps because it keeps dander from building up on furniture, rugs etc. Keeping the cats out of the bedroom helps a lot of people. Having a room free of the allergens to sleep in seems to help a lot of people.
 

neely

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I've had cats for a very long time and have experienced different allergic reactions to different cats. Unfortunately my symptoms worsened when we adopted a dog so I went to an allergist because I refused to give up either pet. That's when I found out I was not only allergic to the cat and dog but environmental triggers as well, e.g. dust, mold, pollen, etc. My doctor recommended an air purifier especially since we allow our pets in the bedroom and to cover the comforter/quilt with a sheet to be washed regularly. I do take allergy medicine but no shots.
This TCS Article may have some helpful tips and advice for you: Living With Cat Allergy – TheCatSite Articles
 

Neko-chan's mama

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I'm mildly allergic to cats. I noticed I've built up a tolerance to Neko-chan over the 3 years I've had her. And weirdly, my father in law's Siamese cats never bothered me.
 

sivyaleah

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Another person allergic to cats here too. I was tested by an allergist. Luckily cats are lower down on my allergen triggers so I manage to live with them nicely. Outdoor allergens are much worse for me. The only cat I ever had a serious reaction to was one of my sisters cats. Never had anything like that happen with any of our own.

I take OTC allergy medication daily all year and we have 2 very good air purifiers in the house (one in our bedroom, the other in our main living area). We try to keep things dusted/cleaned best as we can too (that feels like a never ending battle with 2 long hair cats!).

One of my cats has allergies also. She is on daily sublingual medication made specifically for her allergy profile. It's worked fantastic for her.

If you are suffering badly I'd recommend seeing an allergist who can come up with a good plan for you which includes living with your kitties.

FYI - nobody would ban you for loving dogs here! Many members have all kinds of other pets!
 
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Introvertigo

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Thanks so much to everyone who replied!! I am aware of some of these suggestions but others not so much, so I'll check into them.

Both my cats are longhair and they're used to being in the bedroom, will meow outside door if it's closed. I know this probably makes it worse, but my place just isn't that big. If I had more room and hadn't allowed them in the bedroom from the beginning, that would've been the way to go; that's not my situation though.

I have allergies to things like pollen also, and take otc meds like Zyrtec and others for when it gets bad. These kind of meds don't seem to help as much with the cats though, so I'm thinking the best thing to do is make an appointment with an allergist. I've been putting this off because I seem to be allergic to seeing doctors myself, lol.

The respiratory thing is the worst though. Always before, my allergies only manifested as sneezing and/or a rash. Since living with cats, I've developed constant wheezing and coughing to varying degrees and have thought sometimes that it could be asthma. Can you really develop asthma from a cat allergy though? I'm a little confused about that, number one because I've never had a reaction like that from cats before, and also because everyone I've known with asthma has had it from birth or since very young.

I go through bouts of depression, and I'm having one today just thinking that maybe it's not going to be possible to have the attitude that I'll keep the cats no matter what. I feel like it's kind of a rock and a hard place situation🥺
 

sivyaleah

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Thanks so much to everyone who replied!! I am aware of some of these suggestions but others not so much, so I'll check into them.

Both my cats are longhair and they're used to being in the bedroom, will meow outside door if it's closed. I know this probably makes it worse, but my place just isn't that big. If I had more room and hadn't allowed them in the bedroom from the beginning, that would've been the way to go; that's not my situation though.

I have allergies to things like pollen also, and take otc meds like Zyrtec and others for when it gets bad. These kind of meds don't seem to help as much with the cats though, so I'm thinking the best thing to do is make an appointment with an allergist. I've been putting this off because I seem to be allergic to seeing doctors myself, lol.

The respiratory thing is the worst though. Always before, my allergies only manifested as sneezing and/or a rash. Since living with cats, I've developed constant wheezing and coughing to varying degrees and have thought sometimes that it could be asthma. Can you really develop asthma from a cat allergy though? I'm a little confused about that, number one because I've never had a reaction like that from cats before, and also because everyone I've known with asthma has had it from birth or since very young.

I go through bouts of depression, and I'm having one today just thinking that maybe it's not going to be possible to have the attitude that I'll keep the cats no matter what. I feel like it's kind of a rock and a hard place situation🥺
Yes, you can get what's called allergic asthma. I also have that. I was prescribed an inhaler which helps a lot plus, a "rescue inhaler" if I'm really having a tough time. An allergist would be your best bet especially considering the breathing problem.

Allergies can develop later in life (it hit me in my 40's - was fine until then). The allergic asthma, even later.
 

neely

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Allergies can develop later in life (it hit me in my 40's - was fine until then). The allergic asthma, even later.
Definitely agree that allergies and/or asthma can happen later in life, it happened for me as well in my early 50's. :agree:

I have allergies to things like pollen also, and take otc meds like Zyrtec and others for when it gets bad. These kind of meds don't seem to help as much with the cats though, so I'm thinking the best thing to do is make an appointment with an allergist. I've been putting this off because I seem to be allergic to seeing doctors myself, lol.
I can understand putting off seeing an allergist but honestly it's the only way you will know for sure what is causing your allergic reaction. I would research an allergy and immunology specialist then make an appointment. It has helped me tremendously. Good luck!
 

Christykitty

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I don't have cat allergies but my 6 yr old tested positive for cat allergies. She has lived with multiple cats her whole life and no reactions until recently. She tested positive on a skin test in Sept 2021 and nothing was different until April 2022. She has seasonal allergies as well so hoping it's just that and not the cats. We did get new cats in February. Anyone have children with pet allergies? Is my only option to rehome my cats?
 
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