Animal Allergy

Animal Allergy

Pet dander can act as perennial allergen

Pet Allergy Animal Allergy:

If a person is experiencing allergic symptoms after petting or playing with a dog or cat, then likely have a pet allergy/animal allergy. Pet dander can trigger asthma and allergy.

A pet allergy can contribute to constant allergy symptoms, as exposure can occur at work, school, daycare or in other indoor environments, even if a pet is not present.

Pet Allergy, Animal Allergy Symptoms: 

  • Sneezing.
  • Runny or stuffy nose.
  • Nasal congestion.
  • Coughing.
  • Wheezing, shortness of breath and
  • Red or itchy, watery eyes.
  • Skin rash or hives.

Diagnosis of Pet Allergy/animal allergy:

  • Symptoms.

    One should Tell physician /allergist, the symptoms you are experiencing. Tell your allergist about the possible pet/pets which you are thinking is responsible. Tell him when these symptoms start occurring, how much time the symptoms last and how you get relief.

  • A physical examination.

    To find out any urticarial lesion in the body and to exclude other cause of similar symptoms.

  • Skin Prick Test (SPT):

    In skin prick testing, a small drop of the possible standardized antigen (allergen) is placed on your skin. Then the nurse or doctor will lightly prick the spot with a needle / sterile lancets through the drop. If you are allergic to the substance/allergen, you will develop redness, swelling, and itching at the test site of pricking within 15-20 minutes. There will be wheal and flare at the site of pricking. Usually, the larger the wheal, the more likely you are to be allergic to the allergen.

But one must be kept  in mind that a positive SPT only mean that one may have allergy. It does not necessarily mean you have an allergy to the particular allergen. An SPT only indicates that the person is sensitized to that allergen. Skin test result interpretation must be done with respect to clinical complain of the patient. Health care providers must compare the skin test results with the time and place of your symptoms to see if they match or not.

  • Specific IgE Blood Test:

    Blood testing for allergen-specific IgE is usually performed when the skin prick test is contraindicated. They can also be done in extreme of age i.e., an infant and elderly patients where skin prick test is not appropriate.

In this test, blood drawn from the patient and then sends to the laboratory for testing. The laboratory will add the particular allergen extracts to that blood. If the specific antibody is present in the blood then the antigen added to the blood sample will attach with the specific antibody. This test is called Specific IgE (sIgE) Blood Testing. Previously this test was referred to as RAST.  As with skin testing, a positive specific IgE testing does not necessarily mean that an allergen caused your symptoms.

Pet Allergy Animal Allergy Management and Treatment:

Avoid being around dogs and cats; if you have a pet at home, take specific steps to limit exposure.

Medication includes nasal sprays, antihistamines, and bronchodilators.

  1. Antihistamines: The Most common medicine used in mild to moderate allergic reaction.

Antihistamines include:

  • Fexofenadine
  • Levocetirizine
  • Cetirizine
  • Diphenhydramine
  • Desloratadine
  • Loratadi
  1. Decongestants:

The decongestant used to relieve a stuffy nose and sinus pressure. But decongestant can only be used for shorter time usually for three days. Longer time can cause a rebound effect, means once you stop the medicines your symptoms will actually get worse.

Decongestants include:

  • Oxymetazoline
  • Pseudoephedrine
  • Phenylephrine
  • Cetirizine with pseudoephedrine

One should be kept in mind that history of abnormal heart rhythm, heart disease, history of stroke, anxiety, a sleep disorder, high blood pressure, or bladder issues is important before commencing decongestant medication.

  1. Eye drops and nasal sprays:

Eye drops and nasal sprays can help relieve itchiness and other allergy-related symptoms for a short time. However, depending on the product, you may need to avoid long-term use.

Like decongestants, overusing certain eye drops and nose drops can also cause a rebound effect.

  1. Corticosteroids: Corticosteroids can help with inflammation and immune responses. These do not cause a rebound effect. Steroid nasal sprays are commonly recommended as a long-term. They are useful way to manage allergy symptoms. Nasal steroid medications are the most effective medications.
  2. Immunotherapy:

     An Allergist may recommend immunotherapy, or allergy shots if you have severe allergies. You can use this treatment plan in conjunction with medications to control your symptoms. These shots decrease your immune response to particular allergens over time. They do require a long-term commitment to a treatment plan.

Close Menu