Need help deciding to adopt cat with allergies

cccullen17

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Hello!

I have been looking at shelters for months trying to find a cat that would be a good fit. I have found a cat who is very sweet but she has an allergy to chicken which is causing her to have mouth ulcers and requiring a daily steroid. The shelter says that this week they are experimenting w her medication to see if they can taper off the medicine since she has started to heal with a change of food (on Hills Z/d I believe, whichever is allergy sensitive). What I want to know is what kind of responsibilities would I be taking on with a cat with this condition. I know with any pet a medical expense or emergency may come at any time up and while I am prepared for that as well as the cost for the steroid if she still needs it daily, I am concerned if this might become a very expensive, chronic condition or if her allergies might worsen or widen in variety. I haven’t had a cat for a while and I would be nervous to take her her in if it was likely that this allergy could worsen and require more medical treatment. If anyone has any similar experiences or advice I would greatly appreciate it, thank you!!
 

hexiesfriend

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Steroids are cheap, the fact they know it’s a chicken allergy has taken all the expense out of caring for her. All the tests etc to find the cause are what are expensive. I have a cat with digestive problems with a suspected food allergy. With a regimen of steroids and change to the allergy diet he is getting better. I’d take the chance at giving her a loving home.
 

LTS3

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A chicken allergy can be well managed :) The most important thing is to not feed any cat food or treat that contains chicken in any form at all. Eggs are usually ok but some cats may be sensitive to that. Prescription food is not necessary at all. There are limited ingredient commercially available foods in novel proteins like kangaroo and rabbit you can buy in a pet store or online. Raw and home cooked diets are also options for cats with food sensitives / allergies.

Steroids can be helpful at first to mange symptoms but once you stop feeding foods with chicken and the symptoms go away, steroids aren't needed daily for life.

A cat with a food allergy / sensitivity is no different than a kid with a food allergy. As long as you don't feed the trigger food, both will lead happy healthy lives with little need for medicine :) A food allergy or any other health issue doesn't make a cat any less adoptable or lovable :catrub:
 
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FeebysOwner

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Hi. Make sure you get the records that confirm her allergy to chicken, just so you know that this just wasn't a guess on the shelter's part. Besides, her 'forever' vet that you choose for her would probably appreciate a copy to put in her records - as well as documentation showing what boosters/vaccines and any testing she received while in the shelter's care.

The ideal goal would be to get her off steroids entirely; long term steroid use can present its own set of issues, and should be avoided if at all possible.
 

stephanietx

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There are many alternatives to feeding a cat chicken. You could feed her venison, duck, or rabbit. Make sure you feed pure protein canned to avoid any chicken by-products in dry food. It's very easy to manage.
 

huxleysmom

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My cat Huxley had allergies that supposedly were under control when I adopted him. Turns out they weren’t and he was allergic to a ton of things. His digestive system was already really affected by it and he had IBD and pancreatitis. It was extreme expensive with all of the vet bills and in the end, I had to say goodbye to him as he had also developed issues with his kidneys. I loved him dearly, and never regretted adopting him, nor paying for all of his medical care, but it broke my heart to have to say goodbye so shortly after I adopted him. I swore to myself never to adopt a sick cat again. I adopted Sophie, a one year old cat (and got an insurance from the start). She was healthy.... or so I thought. Turns out she has cardiomyopathy, some digestive issues and had a chicken allergy..... it’s ironic really. I guess what I’m saying is you can never really tell if you are going to have a healthy cat or not, but I personally would not willingly do so again. Only you can decide if it is something you are willing to take on.
 

eva adams

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Some proteins are easier for Kitty to digest than others. Turkey is a good alternative if the chicken is out, as it is known to be easily digested. Look for formulas containing wheat, oats, rice, and egg proteins, because these are less likely to cause tummy upset. Stay away from “cheap” brands because they often include additives, dyes, or flavorings that could be tough for your cat to handle. Always read the label carefully before feeding him anything to make sure no chicken is on the menu. Ask your vet for suggestions.
 

maggie101

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Trial and error. Time and patience which you seem to have. She will be very happy in her new home. At the shelter she will be over looked by people because of allergies. You will find that talked about a lot on the catsite
 
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