Cat Allergies




Types of Cat Allergies.
Like people, cats can suffer from different types of allergies and the amount of Cats suffering from allergies seems to be rising. Cats with allergies react very similar to people with allergies were they will wheeze, sneeze and in very bad cases have respiratory problems. This can also lead to your Cat developing asthma. An allergic reaction in your Cat can be seen by excessive scratching from a developing skin problem. Cat allergies can be categorised into three main categories, these being: Food allergies, Flea allergies and Atopy. Your pet Cat may be susceptible to more than one allergy.

Cat Food Allergies.
Food allergies are an allergic reaction to your Cats food. It could be only one ingredient that causes the allergic reaction but could also be more. The more common allergic reactions are from:

  • Beef

  • Milk products

  • Cereals

  • Wheat

  • Corn

  • Soya

  • Chicken

  • Eggs

What causes the allergy and any reactions is un known.
Common symptoms for your Cat having an allergy to a food type are:

  • Itching excessively

  • Licking excessively

  • Chewing excessively

  • Otits Externa is an ear infection, combine this with a skin problem and this can be a common symptom of food hypersensitivity.

  • Digestive problems such as diarrhea can be a problem associated with a Cat food allergies.

Cat food allergy symptoms can arise at any time in your Cats life, it can be down to a change in what you feed them or it could be a factory change in the ingredients that may cause an allergic reaction.


Cat Food Allergies
If a food allergy is the main suspect for your Cat feeling poorly, the most efficient way for this to be diagnosed is to put your pet Cat on an exclusion or hypoallergenic diet for around 10 to 12 weeks. This diet is to provide food that your pet Cat has not been feed before, the main cause for an allergic reaction is normally a protein. An exclusion diet can consist of venison, duck or fish as these are not often found in normal pet foods. This diet can be either maid at home or a prescription commercial food that is bought.

If your Cat is suffering from a food allergy: once the recommended time period on the exclusion diet has past, your Cat should appear to be better. Once your Cat is feeling better in order to identify the source or sources of the allergy, your vet may recommend introducing one protein into your Cats diet every 1 to 2 weeks. During this period you must keep an eye on your Cat in order to watch for the symptoms of an allergic reaction in order to identify the possible cause of the allergy. Once identified, to prevent the allergic reaction it is best to remove the offending food from the Cats diet.

There isn't a treatment for food allergies: only careful monitoring of your Cats diet to prevent your Cat eating the wrong protein or proteins that will cause a reoccurrence of the symptoms. In very few cases a vet may prescribe antihistamines and corticosteroids.

Cat Flea Allergies and Dermatitis
FAD or Flea Allergy Dermatitis and also known as flea bite hypersensitivity is when a Cats skin has an allergic reaction to flea saliva. One flea bite on any part of the Cats skin can cause a sever allergic reaction resulting in intense scratching. Cats that have flea allergy dermatitis often scratch there head and neck to the point they start loosing hair and cause skin infections. When examining your Cat you may find fleas and flea feces that both look like tiny black dots. However due to the intense scratching and licking their may not be any evidence of fleas or feces.

Diagnosing Cat Flea Allergies and Dermatitis: involves a trip to your local vets where they will look for signs such as:

  • Scratching

  • Skin sores

  • Presence of fleas and/or flea dirt

  • The vet may even carry out a skin test to prove a flea allergy is the problem

A skin test is helpful as flea allergy dermatitis may also appear like other conditions such as other parasites such as mites and lice, an infection or another allergy causing very bad scratching.


Treating your Cat from flea allergies and dermatitis: is accomplished by preventing your Cat from being bitten by fleas. There are products such as insecticides and insect growth regulators that get ride of fleas. A vet may also recommend the best way for treating your Cat. Hovering more regularly, along with washing your Cats bed more often can help towards cutting back the amount of fleas in your home.
To help stop the cycle of itching that leads to scratching resulting in infections, your vet may prescribe the following to help soothe the irritation of flea allergies:

  • Corticosteroids

  • Antihistamines

  • Essential Fatty Acids

  • Also available are anti-itching shampoos and conditioners to bath your Cat in

Unfortunately there are no cures for Cat flea allergies, only the prevention of flea bits. So it is important to always be prepared for fleas and be ready to get rid of them.

Cat Atopy
Cat Atopy is an airborne environmental allergy such as a reaction to:

  • Pollen

  • Mould's

  • House dust mites

  • Animal skin an hair fragments

Atopy is more common among dogs with few Cats being affected. Atopy occurring can be a result of your Cat being genetically susceptible to an allergen.
The more prominent symptoms are itching occurring more around the face, feet, lower chest and belly. This can occur on year round hot spots or seasonally depending on the cause of the allergic reaction, were it may be pollen for seasonal. From this, ear problems and skin infections can become problems to. Continual itching leading to scratching can cause hair loss and baldness around affected areas. Signs of Atopy can be seen from your Cat as young as 4 months old but may only be noticed when they reach the ages between 1 and 3 years old.

Diagnosing Atopy: This will involve a process of elimination as there are many causes of itching such as:

  • Fleas

  • Mites

  • Lice

  • Bacterial and yeast infections

  • Food allergies

These must all be ruled out before Atopy is to blame. Then your vet will more than likely ask for a detailed history of your Cats itching history. Then a skin or blood test may be performed to try and identify the exact cause of the Atopy.

There isn't a treatment for Atopy and it is a life long condition with a few ways of controlling it such as:

  • First of all, removing as much of the allergy in the environment as you can is key.

  • The use of anti itching drugs and shampoos can be useful.

  • Immunotherapy involves a series of injections that will help your Cat adjust to the allergen or allergens that cause the Atopy. The effectiveness varies with around 75% of pets getting relief from Atopy.

  • When the Atopy is only mild, an Elizabethan collar, T shirts and socks can help reduce your Cat from physically scratching and biting its self. 

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  • Questions about Cat Allergies ? Seek advice from your veterinary surgeon!
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  • Need information about Cat Allergies ?
  • Symptoms of Cat Allergies health problems
  • Can I insure my pet cat or kitten against Cat Allergies ?
  • Cat Insurance importance
  • Guide to Cat Allergies - a cats health problem

Cat Allergies


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The intensions of this site is to give you helpful information about the health of your pet cat. It is to provide helpful facts and information to help aid in raising your cat or kitten. This site and its information is not for self diagnosing your pet cat with any illness or sickness. Professional help should be sought - Visit your local veterinary surgeon or practitioner, you may also need to consider whether your pet cat or kitten should be taken to a Cat or cat hospital. Be warned vet bills can be very costly, we strongly recommend the purchase of pet insurance before health problems occur. Cat health insurance is a must as Cat illness can be very expensive, insurance will give much needed help in affording health related bills.

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