Allergy shots may help with humans who are allergic to angora cats but most allergists recommend avoidance. Here are some things that may help.
1. Bath the cat regularly, even if it is just a bath in distilled water or plain water. Dander causes most cat allergies and is produced regularly. If you keep it washed off, it can make a big difference. (Some people may be allergic to cat saliva, but this is unusual.)
2. A “High-Efficiency Particle Arrester” filter may help. There are many different kinds of air filters. To help with allergies, you need a good one. And you need to leave it on all the time – not just when the furnace or air conditioner is on.
3. There are products you spray on the angora cat that claim to “break down” the allergy causing protein. These are “iffy” but some may help.
4. Some people successfully “tough it out.” It is possible for someone with allergies to become “auto-desensitized” by consistent exposure. Some of these people find that after being away from cats for a protracted time, their allergy returns the next time they get a cat.
5. Symptomatic relief – Even “over the counter” medications can have serious side effects if used for extended time periods. You should consult an allergist for the best strategy.
6. Allergy shots. These can be effective, but it takes a series of injections over an extended time period. Dr. Garges remembered one fifteen-year-old girl who threw a tantrum when he suggested getting rid of her angora cat. She took allergy shots for two years, but was finally able to sleep with her cat.
Allergy to cat dander can be reliably diagnosed by skin testing. Recent research has shown that even in many allergy sufferers who have no apparent exposure to angora cats, their main problem is cat dander allergy. It is now suspected that those of us who handle cats carry significant amounts of cat dander with us and spread it around everywhere. Cat dander allergy can also add to other allergic reactions, worsening the problem. If you have allergies, you may want to consider being tested for cat allergy, even if you don’t have turkish angora cats.