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Cat with possible allergies - seeking advice

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  • Cat with possible allergies - seeking advice

    Hi everyone! I have two 4 year old cats from the same litter that I adopted back in 2014. Just this past year, Irie (the larger of the two ) started itching/rubbing her eyes and face really badly, to the point where her inner eyelids were very pink and puffy from the irritation and covering a portion of her eye for periods of time. I took her to the vet after the first time I noticed her rubbing badly. The vet started with an eye ointment, then an eye drop, then sent me to an eye doctor/ophthalmologist (yes, to my surprise - there is such thing as an animal ophthalmologist!!)

    The clinic where the ophthalmologist worked ended up having an allergy specialist as well, and the two of them proposed the idea that maybe her EYE isn't the issue, but its her rubbing caused by itchiness that is irritating the eye. SO, they suggested maybe an allergy.

    At the earlier vet visits, he ended up putting her in a small cone to prevent her from rubbing her eyes and face to the point of doing damage. She has been in and out of the cone for short stints to stop her from rubbing really badly on the "itchier" days. She is able to eat, drink, use the litterbox, and play in it. She is able to bathe about 90% of her body - it prevents her from grooming some small areas and does not allow her to rub her ears.

    We went back to her regular vet and she was put on a special diet of Royal Canin (rabbit & pea formula) to rule out a food allergy. My other cat, Cinder, is eating this food as well since it is impossible to stop them from eating out of each other's bowls! She seems to like it as well and her fur feels really soft so it can't hurt! The vet also had me start giving Irie 1/2 of a Zyrtec crushed up in her food twice a day.

    When this didn't seem to help the itching, he put her on Prednisone - a very small dose (5mg) starting with 1/2 twice a day, tapering to 1/2 once a day, then eventually 1/2 every other day until it is no longer needed. I have also switched them to an unscented/low dust litter in hopes that may help too.

    We are at the 1/2 once a day and she still seems to be itchy on occasion. She is in the cone at the moment and I want to give her a break but I am so terrified that she will still be rubbing! It is causing a lot of anxiety and I find myself worrying about Cinder as well, that she will start itching. I work a full time job (luckily nearby by home) but I find myself unable to focus at work and I feel guilty for being away from the house. It seems silly but it's causing a lot of stress and anxiety and guilt.

    Has anyone dealt with a cat with allergies? Any tips or advice? Anyone with experience giving their cat Prednisone or other steroids (I am worried about possible side effects)?
    Or even help on how to feel less anxious while we sort out what's going on with her? It is just me in my house so it's tough sometimes to do it alone.

    Thank you for taking the time to read this!!

  • #2
    Hi and welcome to the forum. I dealt for a very long time with my catís allergies until I finallyhad allergy testing done, found out what he was allergic to, and started allergy injections. It was worth every bit of time, effort and expense, the shots did the trick and he hasnít had itching since, for several yesrs. I now no longer have to give him the injections. I encourage you to follow up with an allergist.

    Diane and Cicero - Sr. Manager:


    • #3
      While I have a dog and not a cat, I did the same thing as Diane. My dog was licking her paws raw. I brought her to a vet that treats allergies and had the allergy testing done. I had to give her injections. She no longer licks her paws raw. It's worth a shot.
      Jill Gallo /Manager
      The Petsforums Management Team

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      • #4
        There are allergy eye drops that work really well. They used to be prescription, but are now over the counter for humans, and they're the same strength for both species. We have used them for many cats on our vet's advice, but ASK FIRST. I can't imagine they'd hurt, but do ask.


        • #5
          Keep in mind that sometimes this can be caused by the litter you use and the dust particles that get into the air. Also, it's important to keep the litter box clean too as fecal matter might end up somehow making an impact as well. I recently got the recommended sifting litter box on this post myself:

          Helped a bunch when I had to clean it daily. Made it very easy to handle. Hope this helps!