Can cats get hay fever?
Yes, cats can get hay fever only it is not referred to as hay fever in cats but an allergic reaction or hypersensitivity reaction.
The same rules apply as for humans. The cats immune system reacts to things that are not a danger to the cat. Substances such as pollen and grass can cause an allergic reaction which in turn causes itching, coughing, sneezing and swelling of the eyelid.
In humans hay fever is called allergic rhinitis. In cats it is called an allergy.
Other substances in the environment causing an allergic reaction in some cats are for example: powders, feathers, wool and house dust.
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These substances are called ‘allergens’ with respect to a cat who is allergic to them.
These allergens enter the body through the lungs. Other allergens can enter the body via the digestive tract (food allergens) or via the skin. But hay fever applies to allergens in the atmosphere and inhaled.
The affected area is the air passages namely the nose and lungs together with associates areas such as the eyes affected. ‘Cat hay fever’ is unpleasant for the cat and difficult to treat.
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