Can Cats Have Allergies in Limerick, PA?
Dogs are not the only pets that can develop allergies. Cats can also develop allergies in their lifetime. Some cats are born with allergies, while others develop new ones as they age. Experts are still trying to understand how allergies develop and ways to get rid of the reactions.
What are Cat Allergies?
Allergies occur when a cat reacts to an allergen. Although there are a few common allergies that many cats share, each cat has an allergen unique to them. While this is the case, many cats react similarly to their allergens. Allergies are also uncomfortable. Cats may not understand why their bodies are reacting to the environment and their food. This confusion can lead to aggression and stress.
Common Allergies Cats Have
As stated previously, each cat with allergies has a unique situation. Although this is true, there are two large categories of allergens, including environmental allergies and food allergies.
Environmental cat allergies are allergies that cats respond to, which come from their environment. Although it is tempting to label all outdoor allergens as environmental, this is not true. Some environmental cat allergens are products or chemicals that pet owners use inside.
Outdoor allergens typically cause symptoms like runny eyes, sneezing, and skin reactions. It is not uncommon to see a cat with scratchy red skin and scales. Sometimes, if the skin allergies are untreated, your cat can lose their fur in patches. Your cat can be allergic to environmental and outdoor allergens like grass, fungi, mold, and dust.
However, your cat can also react to indoor allergens. For example, you can find both mold and dust inside. Unless your dog is eating or drinking the allergens, though, they are not likely to react with their digestive system.
Products like perfume and cleaning fluids can cause rashes and missing patches of fur because of the harsh chemicals used in each. It is hard to pinpoint the exact allergens causing reactions. While there are tests that can show your cat’s veterinarian their potential allergens, it is not foolproof or 100% accurate.
Interestingly enough, food allergies cause itchy skin and only sometimes digestive problems. The thing about food allergens is that they are very diverse. Each cat has their own food allergen. However, the most common food allergens include high proteins like chicken and pork. These proteins are hard to digest. Your cat can be allergic to things like fruits and vegetables, though. Usually, the reaction occurs near your cat’s mouth and tongue.
There are diagnostic tests that your vet can take to find out the allergen, but it is not entirely accurate. You should instead write down the symptoms and try to figure out the allergen through the process of elimination.
How to Prevent Allergic Reactions
There is no one way to prevent allergies in cats. However, you can reduce the chances that your cat will have an allergic reaction by avoiding the allergen. It is not always possible, but there are preventative techniques.
For instance, keep your cat inside if they have seasonal allergies. Allergens like pollen and dust are primarily inside. Although some dust builds up in your home, you can easily clean and get rid of it.
Every time your cat comes in, make sure to groom their coat. Brush their fur out to get rid of any allergens that are lingering. This way, the allergens like pollen, dust, and trees don’t stay behind and linger on your cat.
For food allergies, avoid cat foods that have the ingredients your cat is allergic to. This takes a lot of time and patience. Every time you go to buy a cat treat or dry cat food, you need to read the ingredients carefully. If not, you may accidentally feed your cat something they are allergic to. Some pet owners feed their pets raw food to prevent allergic reactions. However, you should always consult your cat’s veterinarian before changing their diet entirely.
Treating and Managing Allergies in Cats
To treat allergies in cats, it is important that you remove the allergen. This way, the allergies don’t constantly get triggered. Once the allergen is gone, you can reduce your cat’s reaction by providing them with water and grooming their fur.
Sometimes allergens stick to a cat’s fur and cause further reactions. If your cat has a skin rash because of their allergies, you can also add ointment or coconut oil to soothe the red, flaky skin. However, keep the area dry. Since cats scratch flaky skin, they can accidentally introduce bacteria to open wounds resulting in an infection. Bacteria thrive in humid and wet areas, like open wounds and scratches.
In conclusion, cats can have allergies like dogs and humans. Researchers are still trying to understand how allergies in pets work. From what we do know, cats have environmental and food allergies. Environmental allergens cause digestive health problems and skin reactions. Thankfully, there are many ways to treat the symptoms. However, it is not possible to cure an allergy. Instead, it can go away with time. Not all cats, however, are born with allergies.