General Question

Mariah's avatar

Will cat allergies necessarily cause itchy nose/watery eyes?

Asked by Mariah (25876points) February 22nd, 2011

Had such trouble phrasing this clearly.
I have a rash that I am concerned might be caused by a cat allergy. However, my nose doesn’t run or itch when I’m around cats, and my eyes don’t water. So I’m clinging to this for hope – would I necessarily have these symptoms if I were allergic? Or can a cat allergy be expressed as only a rash alone?
I know I’ll need to see an allergist to know anything for certain but I just want some input right away. I love my cats :(

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10 Answers

Jeruba's avatar

Not necessarily.

Some cats with very strong allergenic characteristics got me all stuffed up. But I could also end up with little hives from contact, especially if a claw broke the skin. It would puff up and itch like crazy.

For a while I also used to get a rash on my hands after I handled certain vegetables. Never did figure that one out.

Allergy test and shots changed my life, and that’s no exaggeration.

Mariah's avatar

Those symptoms would happen immediately, though? I just have this rash that began and worsened very gradually.

chyna's avatar

Could this rash have anything to do with your latest surgery? Or was it before that?

Mariah's avatar

@chyna I doubt it; it started before my surgery, went away while I was at college, and came back when I got home. That’s why I’m so concerned about it being the cats.

ckinyc's avatar

I get asthma attacks!

Seelix's avatar

Did you develop the rash after holding cats? I never show any allergy symptoms to cats, but my skin gets red and itchy if my cat licks me anywhere other than my hands.

Mariah's avatar

@Seelix I didn’t t develop the rash after doing anything specific. It came on slowly over the course of several days.

SpatzieLover's avatar

It could be from the cats. Keep the cats out of your bedroom. Wash your bedding. Sleep with door closed and cats out for one week and see if it helps.

Next, have you changed your food recently? What do you eat or do differently at home than you do at college?

I’m allergic to a LOT of things. So far, my animals have never given me a rash unless I’ve really been holding them/bathing them/cutting their nails. Usually things that cause allergic skin reactions for me are cleaners/pine sap/wildflowers.

Anemone's avatar

It could be from something related to the cats (flea treatments, kitty litter additives, catnip?!?), or related to something else in your house (like soaps or detergents). Or could it be a drug/medication reaction? Or maybe it’s a food allergy that only shows up when you’re at home because that’s the only time you eat a certain food…?

Personally, I’ve had cat allergies that showed up as a sudden and short-lived cough, dry throat, and hoarseness. Usually it’s itchy eyes and sniffles, though.

Mariah's avatar

@SpatzieLover It’s things like this that make me wish life were simple enough to approach like a controlled experiment: change one variable at a time and pinpoint the culprit. Unfortunately there were so many differences between college and home that I couldn’t possibly know. The food was different but I couldn’t tell you specifically how – I don’t know what they put into that cafeteria garbage. I used the same detergents at school that I use at home, and actually I put my college bedding on my bed at home so it’s not that. But I sure didn’t have my cats at school, so that’s worrying me a bit.

@Anemone My cats haven’t had flea treatment in a while, but you reminded me that last summer I pet an outdoor cat that was wearing a flea collar and immediately my hand started feeling warm and itchy. What’s happening now is nothing like that, though. It didn’t happen quickly with a discernable cause. I haven’t started any new medications but I’ve stopped a whole lot of them. There are too many variables to think about, but I’m seeing my doctor tomorrow to hopefully get some allergy tests done.

Thanks all

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