Your family doctor can perform a blood test or skin test that will detect the allergen-specific Immunoglobulin E or IgE. It is used to find out if you got any allergy to dogs. Even if you are that perfectly sure that you are allergic, it is always a good idea to test yourself for allergies. Some people that assume that they have an allergy to dogs turn out that they do not have any. What they are allergic to are mold or pollen that their dog carried in their hair from the outside.
While having yourself tested for allergies is helpful, they are not always indisputable. If you have a pet dog, your doctor might advise you to live without your dog for a while to see how you are going to fair with out them. So that you get a good observation of the symptoms, it may take some time to know about it. Some take months to the degree of dander in the house drops to a level where there is no dog in a house.
Treatment on Allergy to Dogs
If you are diagnosed with dog allergies, it can be treated with standard anti-allergy drugs. The doctor might prescribe one or two of the following:
- Antihistamine – this block out the effects of the chemical that causes the symptoms of dog allergies. They are easily accessible since you can find them sold over the counter. Some include Benadryl or diphenhydramine, cetirizine or Zyrtec and Claritin. There are other antihistamines in the form of nasal sprays such as Astelin.
- Nasal steroids – these are sprays that aid in relieving symptoms of allergies through calming inflammation. These are also used as first-line treatment for any form of allergies. The ones that are available over the counter are triamcinolone, fluticasone, and budesonide. Others are only accessible with a prescription from the doctor.
- Decongestants – they reduce the swelling and relieve congestion in the nose. Examples of OTC decongestants are Allegra-D and Sudafed.
Another option to try out is the allergy shots. However, it does not work for everyone and getting a full treatment with these shots will take years. However, they can aid people that have dog allergies. Talk about the benefits and drawbacks of using allergy shots with your doctor.
Most allergy specialist will agree that while medication can help, the best way to keep dog allergies at bay is to avoid the dogs entirely. Here are a couple of tips to try.
- Use medicine – if you know that you will be in contact with a dog soon, take your medicine at least a couple of weeks before time. It is done to prevent any allergic reaction from happening.
- Keep distance – avoid kissing, petting or touching the dog. This may be quite difficult for dog lovers, but at best, avoid going to houses with pet dogs. If you need to stay at a house filled with dogs, make a request to keep you in a place where there is a good distance from the dog.
- Be aware of visitors with dogs – dog dander tend to cling on luggage or clothing. Even if your visitors leave their dogs at home, they can still carry the dander with them, which can cause you lots of trouble.
Some of the tips above may not be helpful for you, but the least is that you have things you can do to prevent the symptoms from appearing.