Pet Allergy Treatment in Arnold, MD
Understanding Pet Allergies
Pet allergies are caused by an allergic reaction to certain proteins found in the skin or bodily fluids of an animal. This is often triggered by exposure to pet dander. Symptoms of a pet allergy are often similar to those of hay fever, including having a runny nose, sneezing, or difficulty breathing.
It is possible to have an allergic reaction from almost every type of animal. However, most cases of pet allergies are diagnosed due to common household pets such as cats or dogs. While the best course of action to prevent the symptoms of a pet allergy is often to avoid the pet, this can sometimes be difficult. Most pets are beloved members of the family, and getting rid of your pet is often not an option. Several breeds of “hypoallergenic” dogs and cats exist which produce less dander, making them more suitable for allergy sufferers.
It is common for pet allergies to run in a family, especially if asthma is also common. It is suspected that living with a pet in the early stages of life may reduce the risk of developing a pet allergy. In some cases of pet allergies immunotherapy has shown to be effective in greatly reducing the symptoms by exposing the immune system to gradually increasing doses of allergens in order to develop a tolerance. This has allowed some with pet allergies to live in houses with pets without showing severe allergy symptoms.
Symptoms of Pet Allergies
- Itchy or runny nose
- Itchiness or redness of the eyes
- Postnasal drip
- Itchiness and reddening of skin
- Skin rashes
- Difficulty breathing
Pet Allergy Treatment
Common medications used to treat pet allergies include antihistamines (for itching, sneezing, or runny nose), corticosteroids (for symptoms of hay fever), and decongestants (for difficulty breathing). Another long-term treatment includes immunotherapy, in which you are exposed to small doses of the allergen to build tolerance in your immune system.
Dealing with Pet Allergies
Pet allergies, while uncomfortable, are typically not life-threatening. The severity breathing difficulties and swelling of the throat can contribute to the risk of fatality. It is also possible to minimize pet allergy symptoms by frequently cleaning both the pet and the household. Using high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters can also make a difference. Reducing the presence of dander-attracting materials such as carpeting, curtains, or upholstered furniture.
Request more information about pet allergies today. Call (410) 567-0667 or contact Dr. Alan Stuart Weiss online.
Annapolis Integrative Medicine Clinic
Address1819 Bay Ridge Avenue
Annapolis, MD 21403
09:30AM - 06:30PM
Tue: 10:00AM - 06:00PM
Wed: 10:00AM - 06:00PM
Thu: 10:00AM - 06:00PM
Fri: 10:00AM - 05:00PM