To manage cat allergies, pet owners should decrease exposure to allergens by letting cats stay outdoors most of the time, keeping them in only one room, preventing them from going into the bedroom and using an air filter, recommends Everyday Health. Doctors also suggest taking decongestants, antihistamines or other medications. Allergy shots help reduce sensitivity to pet allergens.
Cat owners should not sleep with their cats to reduce the occurrence of symptoms, according to Everyday Health. Air filters help get rid of tiny particles in the atmosphere, but they do not fully eliminate pet allergens because the allergens rapidly descend onto surfaces.
People with pet allergies who want to have new pets should consider choosing animals without fur or hair that do not produce too much dander, notes Everyday Health. It helps to consult an allergist before adopting a new cat. Allergists evaluate a person's medical history and conduct medical tests to identify particular allergens that cause allergy symptoms.
The main culprits for pet allergy symptoms are dead skin flakes, called pet dander, along with pet saliva and urine, explains Everyday Health. These allergens contain proteins that cause the human immune system to respond excessively and trigger symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, itchy eyes and a stuffy nose. Swollen skin, rashes, panting and wheezing are also common symptoms.