Pet Allergies

Pet Allergies

Dog + Cat Allergies

Could You Be Allergic To Your Dog Or Cat?

Allergies to pets with fur are common, especially among people who have other allergies or asthma. In the United States, as many as three in 10 people with allergies have allergic reactions to cats and dogs. Cat allergies are about twice as common as dog allergies.

What Causes An Allergy To Your Pet Dog Or Cat?

The job of the immune system is to find foreign substances, such as viruses and bacteria and eliminate them. As a result, this response protects us from dangerous diseases. People with pet allergies have over-sensitive immune systems. They can react to harmless proteins in the pet’s urine, saliva or dander (dead skin cells). The symptoms that result are an allergic reaction. The substances that cause allergic reactions are allergens.

​Pet allergens can collect on furniture and other surfaces. Therefore, allergens will not lose their strength for a long time. Sometimes the allergens may remain at high levels for several months and cling to walls, furniture, clothing and other surfaces.

​Since pet hair is not an allergen, It can collect dander, urine and saliva. It also can carry other allergens like dust and pollen. Cat and dog allergens are everywhere. Pet allergens are even in homes and other places that have never housed pets. This is because people can carry pet allergens on their clothing.

In addition, allergens can get into the air when an animal is petted or groomed. Pet allergens can also be stirred into the air where the allergens have settled. This can happen during dusting, vacuuming or other household activities. While airborne, the particles can stay suspended in the air for long periods.

What Are Symptoms That I'm Allergic To My Dog Or Cat?

Cat and dog allergens can land on the membranes that line the eyes and nose. Reactions include swelling and itching of the membranes, stuffy nose and inflamed eyes. A pet scratch or lick can cause the skin area to become red. It is common to get itchy eyes after petting an animal then touching your eyes.

​While allergen levels are low or sensitivity is minor, symptoms may not appear until after several days of contact with the pet.

​Due to many airborne particles being small enough to get into the lungs, this exposure can cause severe breathing problems. Therefore, highly sensitive people can begin coughing, wheezing and have shortness of breath within 15 to 30 minutes of inhaling allergens. As a result, highly sensitive people also get an intense rash on the face, neck and upper chest.

​Furthermore, contact with a cat can trigger a severe asthma episode (asthma attack) in up to three in ten people with asthma. Cat allergies also can lead to chronic asthma.

How To Diagnose Dog, Cat And Pet Allergies

As a result of your allergy testing, DOCS OF CT will diagnose a pet allergy based on your symptoms of your allergy test, physical examination and medical history. Finally, your allergy nurse will either use a blood test or skin test to aid in the diagnosis.

Especially Relevant Pet / Dog Allergy Symptoms

  • Sneezing
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Facial pain (from nasal congestion)
  • Coughing, chest tightness, shortness of breath and wheezing
  • Watery, red or itchy eyes
  • Skin rash or hives

Pet / Dog + Cat Allergy Management And Treatment

  • Avoid being around dogs and cats; if you have a pet at home, take specific steps to limit exposure.
  • Nasal sprays, antihistamines and bronchodilators can help relieve symptoms.
  • Most noteworthy is to consider allergy shots (immunotherapy).

Could It Be An Environmental Allergy?

Could You Be Allergic To Your Breed Of Dog?
Dog Allergies Include Popular Breeds Such As

Labrador Retreiver, German Shepherd, Golden Retriever, Beagle, English Bulldog, French Bulldog, Yorkshire Terrier, Boxer, Poodle, Rottweiler, Dachshung, shih Tzu, Doberman Pinscher, Miniature Schnazuer, French Bulldog, German Shorthaired Pointer, Siberian Husky, Great Dan, Chihuahua, Pomerianian, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Shetland Sheepdog, Australian Sheherd, Boston Terrier, Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Maltese, English Mastiff, Cocker Spaniel, Havanese, English Springer Spaniel, Pug, Brittany Dog, Weimaraner, Bernese Mountain Dog, Vizsia, Collie, West Highland White Terrier, Papillon, Bichon Frise, Bullmastiff, Basset Hound, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Newfoundland, Russell Terrier, Border Collie, Akita, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, Miniature Pinscher, Bloodhound, Saint Bernard, Shiba Int, Bull Terrier, Chinese Shar-Pei, Soft Coasted Wheaten Terrier, Airedale Terrier, Portuguese Water Dog, Whippet, Alaskan Malamute, Scottish Terrier, Australian Cattle Dog, Cane Corso, Lhasa Also, Chinese Crested, Cairn Terrier, English Cocker Spaniel, Dalmatian, Italian Greyhound, Dogue De Bordeaux, Samoyed, Chow Chow Dog, German Wirehaired Pointer, Belgian Malinois, Great Pryenees, Pekingese, Irish Setter, Cardigan Welsh Corgi, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Irish Wolfhound, Old English Sheepdog, American Staffordshire Terrier, Bouview Des Flandres, Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, Japanese Chin, Tibetan Terrier, Brussies Griffon, Wirehaired Pointing Griffon, Border Terrier, English Setter, Basenji, Standard Schnauzer, Silky Terrier, Flat Coasted Retriever, Norwich Terrier, Afghan Hound, Giant Schnauzer, Borzoi, Wire Fox Terrier, Jack Russell Terrier, Schipperke, Gordon Setter, Keeshond

Cat Allergies Include Popular Breeds Such As:

Abyssinian, American Bobtail, American Curl, American Shorthair, American Wirehair, Balinese, Bengal, Bombay, British Shorthair, Burmese, Chartreux, Cornish Rex, Cymric, Devon Rex, Egyptian Mau, Exotic Shorthair, Havana Brown, Himalayan, Japanese Bobtail, Javanese, Korat, Maine Coon, Manx, Munchkin, Nebelung, Norwegian Forest Cart, Ocicat, Oriental, Persian, Ragdoll, Russian Blue, Scottish Fold, Selkirk Rex, Siamese, Siberian, Singapura, Snowshoe, Somali, Sphynx, Tonkinese, Turkish Angora, Turkish Van