Cat Dander Allergy Test
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About Our Cat Dander Allergy Test
Note: Fasting is not required for this test.
This allergy test uses a blood sample to determine if you are allergic to Cat Dander.
It's estimated that as many as 3 in 10 people living in the United States are allergic to cats. Allergies to cats are twice as prevalent as allergies to dogs. People who are allergic to cats aren't allergic to the cat itself; they're actually allergic to certain proteins in the cat's urine, saliva, and epithelium (dander).
Dander consists of dead skin cells, which means that long-haired, short-haired, and even hairless animals can cause pet dander allergies. Pet dander is microscopic; it stays in the air longer than epithelium from cockroaches or mites; and because of its jagged shape, it attaches easily to surfaces like upholstered furniture, bedding, and clothing. Cat and dog dander has even been found in homes and buildings that don't contain pets. Because pet dander's ability to affix to surfaces, people with allergies can experience allergic symptoms even if they don't pet the animal.
Cat dander allergy symptoms include itchy or watery eyes, itchy skin, and/or respiratory problems. Dander can remain on clothing and bedding, and until they're thoroughly cleaned, they will continue to create problems for those with allergies.
There are 86.4 million cats in U.S. homes, according to the Humane Society, so testing for cat hair and dander allergens is important.
Tips for helping to rid your home of pet dander and hair if you or a loved one has a cat allergy:
- Vacuum all carpeted areas often and steam clean any fabrics that you can (couches, drapes, curtains, bedding, etc).
- Add an air purifier with HEPA-grade filter to rooms that you spend the most time in with the pet.
- Consider keeping the cat out of the allergic individual's bedroom. Because people spend one-third to half of their time in their bedroom on average, removing cats from that room can significantly cut down on the time spent around pet allergens.
- Bathe your cat once a week to reduce the amount of dander, and/or brush them often.
If you have a cat allergy, that doesn't meant that you can't adopt a cat! Here are some options if you find yourself in that situation:
- Just in case. Have preventative medications on-hand, such as fast-acting antihistamines or inhalers.
- Take it slow. Begin with limited contact, like touching the cat with one hand, then wait to gauge your reaction. Some allergic reactions are immediate, while others may take time.
- Consider a female or neutered male cat. Both female animals and males who have been neutered for at least 2 months have less active sebaceous glands and therefore produce fewer protein allergens. Non-neutered male pets have larger amounts of these secretions and are often more allergenic.
- Long-haired Siamese. Long-haired Siamese cats were found to produce less of the allergen-causing protein than any other breed.
- Give it time. As with many allergens, pet allergens can become more and more mild overtime. Increasing time and exposure to animals that cause allergies can help lessen them for many people.
Even if you’re sure your allergy symptoms are caused by cats, we still recommend testing, since the symptoms may actually be caused by other environmental elements.
Traditional allergy tests utilize the Skin Prick method (also known as a Puncture or Scratch test) to determine whether an allergic reaction will occur by inserting possible triggers into your skin using a needle prick. If you are allergic to the substance, you are forced to suffer through your body's reaction to the allergen. HealthLabs.com offers an easier, virtually pain-free blood test to determine the allergen status of substances without the irritation of traditional skin prick tests.
- No painful skin pricks
- No fasting necessary
- Accurate results within 1 to 2 days
Our quick blood test allows us to use your blood sample to test for allergic reactions externally, rather than causing unnecessary and painful reactions by introducing potential allergens to your system. Tests are administered in approximately 10 minutes or less at any of our 4,500+ nationwide locations. No appointments, no paperwork and no waiting are all part of what makes HealthLabs.com the best option for pain-free and hassle-free allergy testing.
Medically Reviewed by2019-05-20 - Written by HealthLabs Editorial Team.