Pet lovers cannot imagine life without their fur babies, but sometimes life is unfair. Allergies to animals can actually develop at any time in your life. You could conceivably develop allergies to cats or dogs after working as a vet or vet tech for years. You could also suddenly develop symptoms around the cat you have had for a decade. Although an allergy to animals is obviously distressing, there are ways to cope with your condition without staying away from the animals you love.
You probably think that you are allergic to the fur on animals, but your body is usually reacting to the dander that is on their skin. Those little flakes of skin are responsible for a world of misery, sometimes causing skin reactions and often triggering respiratory issues. You can also be allergic to an animal's saliva or urine. If you suspect a pet allergy, you can visit an allergist or immunologist like the Asthma and Allergy Clinic for testing. Although this can be a difficult problem, your physician can offer you options that allow you to be around animals without suffering.
Treatment and Prevention
In some cases, undergoing immunotherapy will lessen or even eliminate your pet-related symptoms. You will receive periodic shots to build up your resistance to animal allergens. You can also take steps at your home and business to reduce the allergy triggers. You can use HEPA air filters, remove carpeting, and frequently wash your bedding. Showering at night to remove pet dander before you sleep is another excellent strategy. Experts recommend keeping your pets out of your bedroom. You certainly shouldn't sleep with them, but they need to stay out of the room too. You may also consider having other animal-free zones in your home. Maybe the pets can be in the family room but not other areas. Your pets may be a little put out at the change, but as long as they continue to receive love and attention, they should adjust. Only in the most severe situations would you need to place your pets with someone else.
Pet allergies can be distressing, but often you can find a solution that does not involve an animal-free life. Pets are too important to many people to make that an option except in the most severe circumstances. Caring for animals can be a bit of work, but you know that they are worth it. Pets add a great deal to your quality of life.