Many people suffer from pet allergies and pets themselves can be allergic to a myriad of things. Understanding more about these allergies and their causes can help us to reduce allergic reactions in both us and our pets.
A very relevant piece of information for pet owners to know is that, unlike humans who generally just get red eyes, runny noses and sneezing attacks, cats and dogs with allergies and hay fever may well get unbearably itchy.
Here are 5 pet allergy facts that may well surprise you
Bathing your pet in cool water can help soothe itchy skin
A five to ten minute cool water bath can help, but warm water must never be used as this can exacerbate the condition. Bathing a pet also reduces the dander (dried skin) secretions associated with many pet to human allergic reactions.
Think you are allergic to cats fur? Think again
People that are allergic to cats are not allergic to the cat fur-they are allergic to an allergen known as Fel D1. Fel D1 is found in the saliva of cats and kittens and is released onto the cat's fur and skin when the cat grooms itself. The Fel D1 becomes an airborne threat as it travels on dried skin, saliva and secretions that fall off the cat through petting, jumping and general shaking.
Allergic to pets? Pets can be allergic to people
Human dander (dried skin) can contain allergens that promote allergic reactions in pets. This does not mean that you have to part company with your pet as your vet can give your pet oral drops or an allergy shot that contain tiny amounts of the problem allergen and this in turn can retrain your petès body to ignore the allergen.
Cat litter-there is a difference
Cat litter brands contain various fragrances and dust and can promote allergic reactions in both cats and dogs. Consider changing your brand of cat litter should a particular brand promote a reaction in your pets.
Another reason for a good flea prevention routine
When a cat or dog suffers a flea bite some may develop a reaction to an element contained in flea saliva that causes a condition known as flea allergy dermatitis. This condition often leads to hot spots, especially in dogs and a thorough flea treatment routine that involves the cat or dog and all of its surrounding environment can go a long way in preventing this condition.