Having any allergy symptoms to animals is very common among people. Any animal of hair or feathers can cause allergy in people predisposed genetically. In particular, cats and dogs are the two animals that most allergic responses generate in people.
The allergy is an exaggerated or hypersensitive reaction of the body’s immune system to exposure to an allergen, producing a reaction (itching, tears, rashes, headache, sneezing …) that will reveal us if our pet produces allergy or do not. That is, allergy to animals is the appearance of allergic symptoms as a result of contact with them or by inhaling small particles from them.
Having allergies to dogs does not mean having an allergy to the animal itself, but to one or more proteins that produce dogs and that generate an allergic reaction. The most common allergens are usually found in the dog’s saliva and sweat glands, sebaceous and lacrimal duct. Therefore, if the person allergic to the proteins found in the saliva comes in direct contact, there may be a hives or an alteration in the skin.
Therefore, contrary to what everyone thinks, hair is not the main cause of allergy in animals or dogs, but dander particles, which contain the allergens formed in the secretions of the sebaceous and salivary glands . The animals also renew the skin and gradually break away in the form of microscopic scales. The secretions that the allergens contain remain attached to the hair and the horny layer of the skin. Particles caused by peeling are able to remain floating in the air for long periods of time.
Therefore, being inhaled causes allergic symptoms in the nose, eyes and respiratory tract. When the particles fall, they are deposited on the floor, furniture, carpets … So it is not necessary to come into direct contact with the dog, that is, to caress it, so that the allergy manifests itself. An important recommendation for people with allergies to dogs is that they frequently clean the places that the dog passes, thus eliminating as many particles as possible and reducing the risk of allergy.
You may also experience symptoms of being allergic to one or more particular dog breeds and others not. However, no differences have been found with respect to allergens produced between different breeds of dogs, nor are there specific allergens specific to a breed. It is true that some breeds are distinguished by a greater sebaceous secretion and by giving off more dandruff than others, therefore it can increase the symptoms. Again it should be remembered that it does not influence a dog to have longer hair, since the cause of the allergy is the dandruff that they give off when renewing the skin.
The symptoms that you can feel when having allergies to dogs are not exclusive to this type of allergy, that is to say, that the person who suffers it does not have to have allergy to this animal, but to something else. For example, the presence of ticks or other parasites that the animal may have. Excessive growth of dust mites that feed on animal dander or fungi that appear in moisture environments can be the source of allergy in a person. Even the use of insecticides or chemicals used for their care, the dog’s own food may be the cause of the allergy. Therefore, it is desirable that before a dog is allergic, a physician should be tested.
Symptoms Of Being Allergic To Dogs
The first allergic symptoms are usually the same as with other environmental allergens (such as pollen), that is, rhinitis, conjunctivitis and asthma, which manifest as itchy nose and eyes, sneezing, nasal congestion, mucus, fluidity, fatigue, shortness of breath, and wheezing.
In addition, contact with hair, dandruff and saliva causes itching, hives or swelling and redness in the area of contact with the skin or the eyelids of the eyes. In the most severe cases of allergy, it is possible that the person suffers an asthmatic crisis, but usually occurs in people with asthma or respiratory problems. In more extreme cases, it is possible to suffer an anaphylactic shock, but it is a rare symptom in allergy to dogs. If this happens, it is imperative to see a doctor.
In people who are allergic to the dog with whom they coexist, daily contact causes a progressive inflammation of the airways that causes symptoms, which may appear and disappear intermittently without being clearly related to the animal. In addition, this inflammation makes the bronchi more sensitive and reacts to other stimuli, such as exercise, cold air, dust, smoke and contamination, which would not cause symptoms if the bronchi were not previously inflamed due to allergy to the animals.
People who suffer from similar allergies, such as another animal or pollen, are more likely to have allergies to dogs. These people, the most vulnerable to suffer from allergy to dogs, are atypical, present excessive reactions to substances or stimuli. The most suspicious thing to believe that the allergy is to the dog is that the symptoms appear right after being in contact with him. It would also be suspect that only the symptoms appeared in places where the animal has been and disappeared where it is not found.
Having a dog allergy does not mean that we can not have it as a pet. Just take into account some basic recommendations, but do not make sure that with them the symptoms of allergy will disappear:
1. Wash it more often to reduce the number of allergens. Minimum once a week.
2. Use a specific shampoo to reduce the amount of allergens. Ask the vet for the recommended one.
3. Brushing your hair every day will cause hair to fall that contains particles of dandruff that produce allergy.
4. Do not let him climb on the couch or beds where you are going to get up later. Especially in the room where you go to sleep.
5. Clean the places that the animal passes daily.
6. Avoid touching the animal or washing your hands right after doing so.
Follow the recommendations
7. Ventilate the home for long periods of time.
8. Use air purification systems indoors.
9. Wash clothing that has been in contact with the dog without reuse. Also wash the clothes of the animal if it carried.
10. Use a daily pharmacological treatment to reduce inflammation of the respiratory tract. For example, nasal sprays. Also oral eye drops and antihistamines.
11. Go to the veterinarian and find out if there is any product that reduces the dander’s fall from the dog.
12. There is also the possibility of vaccinating the animal, but it is advisable only in people that contact with him is inevitable, such as veterinarians.
If the allergy is strong and persistent, it is recommended to remove it from the home and not to go to places where there may be dogs, since the greater the contact with the animal, the greater the severity of the symptoms.
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