Signs your Child may have a Pet Allergy
Pediatric Allergist Ron Ferdman discusses how parents can deal with the issue of pet allergies and their newborn baby. Pets are practically members of the family, but they can cause coughing, wheezing, or a runny nose if your child happens to be allergic. Some allergies can even turn chronic and result in these symptoms persisting even when leaving the house. If you have a newborn, consider having your child undergo quick and easy pet allergy tests before kicking your pup to the curb.
- Not a week goes by where I don't get a question regarding some sort of family pet. And it's either parents who want to get a pet for a child who already had other allergies or they own a pet and want to know if they can keep the pet. Usually, it's pretty obvious when a child has a pet allergy because the symptoms come on so quickly after exposure to that pet. So they play with the dog or they pet the cat and they immediately start coughing or wheezing, or their nose starts running. The problem is when you live with a cat or a dog every
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single day, day after day after day, those allergies can turn into more of a chronic phase, and you seem to have allergies all the time. So even when you leave the house, the allergies continue and you don't see that your allergies get better when you leave the house and they don't get worse when you come back into the house so you just assume you don't have a pet allergy. But that's not always true. Another thing that parents will do is they'll try to give away the pet for a weekend. They'll give it to a cousin or an uncle and the problem with that is that the cat or dog hair could last in your house for at least six or even nine months after the pet is out of the house. So just removing the pet for a couple of days without resolution of symptoms doesn't mean that you weren't allergic to the pet. So sometimes it's a little bit difficult and we do have to oftentimes do pet allergy testing. And that's probably one of the results I look least forward to give to families because then they have to decide whether they want to keep the pet or get rid of the pet that's already become a member of the household.
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