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Can Cats Be Allergic to Other Cats? (Vet Remedy)


Mar 16, 2023
black and white cat scratching itself


black and white cat scratching itself
Dr. Rachel Ellison Photo

The data is current and up-to-date in accordance with the most recent veterinarian investigate.

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Has your cat started sneezing, itching, or scratching lately? Probably they’ve been grooming or biting on their own incessantly? There could be a variety of leads to of these behaviors, but one particular popular, nonetheless stunning trigger is that cats can have allergic reactions!  Some pet homeowners may well request, “Can cats be allergic to other cats?” The small answer is no.

Health practitioner Meagan Painter, a board-licensed veterinary skin doctor says that it’s “Not actually something we have been capable to display and/or not a little something we take a look at for.”

But cats do have a lot of other verified allergy symptoms. So, what are they? Examine on to uncover out more!


Allergy symptoms and Feline Atopic Syndrome (FAS)

An allergy is a problem in which the body’s immune technique goes into overdrive in reaction to a distinct substance, termed an antigen. The human body effectively becomes hypersensitive to this antigen that it labels as overseas and releases histamine. This can trigger a chain reaction and a number of side results noticed in an allergic reaction, these as itching and swelling.

Feline Atopic Syndrome (FAS) is a newer, far more basic term utilised to describe allergic conditions in cats that have an effect on the pores and skin, gastrointestinal tract, and/or respiratory program.  Under this umbrella expression, there are many allergic health conditions which incorporate flea allergy dermatitis (Trend), feline atopic pores and skin disorder (FASS), feline food items allergy (FFA), and feline asthma. Underneath, we’ll delve a little little bit extra into every single of these health conditions separately.

1. Flea Allergy Dermatitis in Cats (Trend)

Flea allergy dermatitis occurs when a cat has a hypersensitivity response to proteins in flea saliva. Ctenocephalides felis, also identified as the “cat flea”, is the most popular flea species accountable for flea bites and causing flea allergy dermatitis in equally cats and canines. Non-allergic animals can have occasional scratching owing to fleas, but these with an allergy will show a a lot increased response. In actuality, in cats that have an allergic response to flea saliva, at times even only a solitary flea chunk can result in the cat to have an excessive response.

Normally, indicators observed in flea allergy dermatitis in cats can involve an itchy, inflamed body, chewing, licking, and hair loss. These indications are frequently concentrated in regions alongside the head, neck, underside of the tummy, and decreased back again 50 % of the entire body. Tiny pimple-like bumps with crusting (called miliary dermatitis) are extremely frequent, and purple ulcers or plaques can also come about. On examination, just one may perhaps be in a position to see fleas or their excrement (called flea dirt) as evidence, but that may possibly not always be the circumstance.

Sometimes, a diagnosis is only dependent on record, the lesions viewed on the test, and a superior response to flea therapy and control. Allergy pores and skin or blood testing could be an possibility, but it is not normally foolproof and may well be interpreted better when thought of with each other with favourable clinical signs.

Treatment is multifaceted drugs will be desired to provide the impacted cat reduction in the scratch-itch cycle as perfectly as to control fleas (both of those on the pet and in the environment) to reduce long run difficulties from developing. Medical therapy with antihistamines may possibly be beneficial in a smaller percentage of cases, but remedy is most frequently productive with corticosteroids. Secondary skin bacterial infections, if current, will also require to be taken care of.

There are quite a few solutions for flea management for the influenced pet as well as any other pets in the residence. Some of these solutions include things like spot-on treatment options, oral medications, collars, and sprays. Your veterinarian will be capable to explore various solutions and help you identify what may well be finest for you and your pets’ scenario. Environmental manage will also be critical and need to manifest wherever the cat spends their time, regardless of whether inside (these as beds, home furniture, carpet, and many others.) and/or outside.

grooming cat using flea comb
Picture Credit score: Simone Hogan, Shutterstock

2. Feline Food items Allergy (FFA)

Feline food allergy happens in cats when hypersensitivity happens thanks to a solution in the food stuff that they eat. The principal signal noticed is itchiness of the physique, which often concentrates close to the head and neck and that takes place constantly across all seasons1. In response to the itch, self-trauma is very likely to final result. Hives, crusts, thick or infected skin, and hair reduction can all happen. Often, a secondary bacterial or yeast an infection will also be current. In addition to the skin signals, there may also be GI indications these as vomiting, diarrhea, a deficiency of appetite, or weight decline.

In cats, some of the most prevalent food stuff allergens consist of fish, beef, and chicken.  Remarkably, a cat could build an allergy to a food stuff that they have already been eating for a extended interval of time. Sadly, there is no very simple take a look at to determine if a cat has a food stuff allergy and the only way to diagnose this is to do a rigid food trial.

A foodstuff demo really should be accomplished for at the very least 8 months with a new meals, and ordinarily would consist of both a novel protein food plan or a hydrolyzed diet regime.  A novel protein (e.g., duck) and carbohydrate (e.g., potato) eating plan could be selected as long as the cat has hardly ever been uncovered to the ingredients prior to. Alternatively, a hydrolyzed diet regime is created up of a prescription pet foodstuff in which the protein is damaged down so small that the body is not intended to figure out it as an allergen. During the food trial, no other meals, flavors or goods need to be eaten this would include things like other pet food, human foods, treats, chews, or points that are flavored such as medications, toothpaste, or toys.

If through the demo, the symptoms significantly enhance or resolve, the following stage is at the conclusion of the food items demo and reintroduce the earlier food stuff. If the allergy indications return in just a 2-7 days period of time, this is then identified to be a beneficial response for a food allergy. Several food stuff trials to pinpoint which ingredients are leading to the allergy might want to be carried out.

cat in christmas hat eating on perfect gray background
Impression Credit rating: BestDeals, Shutterstock

3. Feline Atopic Pores and skin Syndrome (FASS)

Feline atopic pores and skin syndrome occurs in cats that are allergic to irritants in their natural environment which could include things like pollens, molds, dust mites, etcetera. These allergens could be consumed (eaten or inhaled) or absorbed on the skin’s area. Signs witnessed in this sickness can contain the pores and skin signs talked over with the disorders earlier mentioned this kind of as itchiness, ulcers, or ulcerated plaques, and cats could scratch, lick or bite impacted areas in excess of and about. The places most influenced are typically on the head or neck and commonly 1st start out in cats that are much less than 5 many years aged. Other diseases can exacerbate or mimic this situation, these types of as different infections or fleas, so it is critical to rule out other will cause, way too. Intradermal allergy tests can be executed, but due to the fact cat reactions may perhaps be much less powerful than all those of puppies, they can be more difficult to interpret.

Devoid of intervention, this disorder is possible to get even worse around time remedy of the signs can drastically improve a pet’s quality of everyday living and could need to have to be continued for the lifetime of the pet. If feasible, steering clear of offending allergens would be excellent and if any secondary skin bacterial infections are current, individuals concurrent health conditions will will need proper therapy as well.

Graphic Credit rating: Susan-Santa-Maria, Shutterstock

4. Feline Bronchial asthma

Bronchial asthma in cats is a reduce airway disease with irritation that effects from respiratory in what their physique establishes is an allergen. In change, this can provide about a collection of gatherings that outcome in airway irritation, swelling, and constriction. These inflamed airways usually endorse mucus production and lessen in measurement, which both equally lead to generating it harder to breathe. Indicators noticed with feline bronchial asthma could include swift and shallow breaths or owning issues breathing, sometimes with an open mouth. In excess of time, an influenced cat may well build wheezing, coughing, or exercise intolerance.

For diagnosis, a complete history coupled with medical indications and a complete bodily test will be wanted. Generally, X-rays may perhaps have proof of modifications that go along with asthma. Bronchoscopy (using a digital camera that is passed down to visualize the airways) and bronchiolar lavage make it possible for for getting samples of or from the airway that can help in analysis. On top of that, bloodwork, heartworm, and fecal assessments can be utilised to give more proof for prognosis or to rule out other will cause of respiration trouble in cats.

cat with asthma
Impression Credit rating: RozochkaIvn, Shutterstock



Even though the latest consensus of veterinary dermatologists is that cats can’t be allergic to other cats, that does not imply that they don’t put up with from other allergies. In actuality, some can even experience from extra than a single at a time. To continue to keep your cat as healthful and risk-free as attainable, the most important factor one particular can do is pay out shut focus to their pet and get help when necessary.

If your cat is suffering with indicators of an allergy, a dialogue with your pet’s veterinarian may perhaps give significantly-necessary reduction for your feline friend!

Showcased Graphic Credit history: Opel_pw, Shutterstock

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