Is it possible to be allergic to one cat and not others? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-29-2010, 11:59 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Is it possible to be allergic to one cat and not others?

So, I noticed that every time I went into Forte's room my eyes would itch and water and I would sneeze. But I'm having seasonal allergies, and I thought it'd be impossible for me to be allergic to him when I am not allergic to Coda and Allegro and never showed any signs of allergies around my foster cats.

For the past few nights, we had been allowing him to roam around alone while Coda and Allegro are in his room, and at first he mostly stuck to exploring. He has become more comfortable lately, though, and tonight has been climbing on and around me, rubbing his nose and head all over me, and sitting on my lap or shoulder.

And I've just broken out in hives on one arm, and again, my eyes are watery. I don't remember ever getting hives before.

I know at this point I'll want to go to an allergist to see if I can get meds, but has anyone ever heard of being allergic to some cats and not others?


%^*$^&$%@@$%$, this sucks.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 12:03 AM
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Could it be the stress from the whole introduction process and not the cats?

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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 12:10 AM
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My spouse is allergic to cats.

We have five.

Every time we get a new one, he sneezes/gets watery eyes/coughs until he gets used to the new cat, then he's fine. Maybe this is what's happening?

I do agree with Marie, though, that stress can really make things like that worse.

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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 12:18 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by marie73 View Post
Could it be the stress from the whole introduction process and not the cats?
I don't know. It's not really that stressful (or if it is, I've been through a lot more stressful things in my life, so this doesn't register as stress).

Muzby, yeah, my reaction was "well, I guess I'll have to get medicine." My husband's response was, "I hope you're not allergic, because then we'll have to give him back." I let him know in no uncertain terms that if I'm really not sure, then I'm not THAT allergic, and will just need medicine. And if we DO have to give Forte back, that's not going to be the reason.

It's just weird because I've never had an allergic reaction to any cat before.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 12:23 AM
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Hopefully, it's temporary. If it's not, we have lots of members here with allergies and different ways of coping they can share with you.

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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 12:34 AM
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It is possible to be allergic to some cats and not others. Most cat allergies are related to a protein found in cat saliva, called Fel d1. Individual cats produce this protein in different amounts. So, people are more likely to be allergic to cats that produce Fel d1 in larger amounts. I know that, in general (and one must always be cautious with generalizations), male cats tend to produce more Fel d1 than do females (particularly males that have not been neutered), and dark-haired cats tend to produce more Fel d1 than do lighter-haired cats. I believe it is possible for you to be tested to assess whether or not you are allergic to this protein, although you should check with your allergist. It is also possible to have the cat tested to determine the level of Fel d1 produced (a saliva test). With a bit of luck, perhaps your reaction is related to something other than Forte.

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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 01:09 AM
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Yes, I agree with Susan, a friend's hubby used to be very allergic to my shorthair cats, and when they visited his eyes and nose streamed and he couldn't stay longer than about 45 mins. in our house, but they had several cream colored Persians and he wasn't allergic to them at all. I didn't know that about the color of cats having an influence, so I found that very interesting.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 01:37 AM
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Very interesting. I'm allergic to cats and I have noticed that I'm more allergic to my darker hair cat but I never knew why.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 01:59 AM
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Hubby is allergic, our son is also but not as much. We have had a lot of success with Allerpet shampoo for cats, and also with Dander Free for cats by Earth's Balance. The Dander Free is a spray bottle (what were they thinking?) so I pour a little into a glass to work into Gracie's coat (slightly warmed in microwave helps too).

Gracie doesn't seem to mind the warm water part of the process, she only complains when I towel her dry (but by then it is too late to complain!) She always forgives me right away.

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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-30-2010, 04:00 AM
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I am allergic to all cats, but definitely some more than others. My allergies to cats has always been minor, (runny nose, itchy eyes, etc.) but with some cats I do get to the point of hives.

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