Medical Questions > Conditions and Diseases > Asthma Forum

Advice needed on asthmatic reaction to cats

Hello, I am new to the forum and I could do some with advice please...

My partner has an allergy to cats. If he is scratched by one he goes red and itchy where he was scratched, and if he touches his eyes after touches one his eyes go all red and ithcy. But the major concern is that they bring out his asthma. After being in a house with cats for about an hour, his chest starts to tighten up and he wheezes when breathing.

When I moved in with him, I had to give up my beloved cats and I have been heartbroken ever since. We did try keeping once, and keeping the cat downstairs, hoovering every day etc, but after 2 weeks, his chest was beginning to tighten.

I know you may think it selfish of me, but I really want a cat, I have had them all my life, and I feel lost and very sad without one to love. Doing some research, I have seen that Siberian female neutered cats are particularly hypoallergic. I spoke to my partner about it and he is willing to try it. We thought maybe we could go visit the breeders home and spend some time around an adult cat for a while to see how he gets on. Although, I am concerned that if he is fine and we take a cat home, within a month, or even a year his astmatic reaction comes back, then we would have to rehome the cat.

Can anyone give us some advice? Have you been in a similar situation? What has helped you?

I would greatly appreciate any input.
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replied March 26th, 2011
Hello and thank you for posting your medical question on E health forum.

Asthma is due to a hypersensitiveness of the airway tract to variety of stimuli. People with asthma experience symptoms when the airways tighten, inflame, or fill with mucus. Common asthma symptoms include:

1. Coughing, especially at night ;
2. Wheezing ;
3. Shortness of breath ;
4. Chest tightness, pain, or pressure

Still, not every person with asthma has the same symptoms in the same way. You may not have all of these symptoms, or you may have different symptoms of asthma at different times

Animal dander is a definite cause of allergy and a factor for precipitating asthma attacks and it is advisable to all asthma patients to avoid them as far as possible.

Though theoretically, you can have a hypoallergic breed of cats, they are not 100% fool proof and effective to prevent asthma attacks.

Your partner can be prescribed prophylactic medications like singulair and steroids that can reduce the airway responsiveness to any allergen. This might help him to reduce his asthmatic response to exposure to pets.

Your partner might consult his doctor or a allergist for additional advice and allergy testing.

I hope this helps.

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