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Food/Skin Allergy, Home Remedies?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone! I just found this site while searching for allergy remedies that maybe i have overlooked. Someone on here suggested adding apple cider vinegar to cats food or water. I was wondering if anyone had done this as well? I'm going to try it because at this point, I have not much to lose with her.

My cat is Clementine (The Clem Monster) she's a little hellion but sweet as she can be when she wants to be. Anyways I moved last year and vet at first thought it was a stress thing - the overgrooming and constant licking and itching - but now thinks it's probably allergies. I do flea treatments - Revolution - she's on an anit-anxiety amnitriptoline & prednisone. It worked for awhile but then she got worse. She's now on a vet diet for food allergies but that hasn't helped either.

I can't afford a dermatologist or the allergy shots. $4000 worth of tests and a year later I'm just in debt that I can't really get out of. I work 2 jobs to pay off my vet bills. I just don't make enough money.

Anyways, I wanted to hear if anyone used the apple cider vinegar or flaxseed oils. Or any other home-remedy that might work.

We're switching from Amnitryp to Prozac soon. I'd really like to stay off medicines b/c of long-term side effects (no to mention cost). I've also tried spray antiseptics and lotions. None of which really made much difference.

The Amni/Pred combo seems to subdue the symptoms but not completely. Higher doses I worry will really effect her worse - she's already gained a little bit of weight b/c of the 'roids and has trouble with respiratory infections when we get too high a dose on the steroids as well.

Any other ideas? Thanks so much.
post #2 of 28
Get her on really good flea control, feed a limited antigen diet (venison and pea, duck and pea) with NO TREATS or other outside food sources, make sure your vet has checked her for demodex cati and performed a fungal culture, and start saving for the intradermal testing.

I have an allergy dog, and I would pick the allergy shots over long-term drug therapy any day. Its about the same cost long term anyway.
post #3 of 28
My Coco once had her fur come out in Clumps from a Allergy years ago. We also had a probem with Clavamox. She throws it up and gets a rash from it and itches alot. She wi also get a rash from 1 flea. I hope you can figure our what is wrong with your Cat. Coud they try Allergy testing. My Cat has Asthma with her Allergies and Sneezing. She is Alergic to Pollen and so many things.
post #4 of 28
WHat is she eating and how old is she >???

Many times a allergy can be found and controlled without a one meat and one starch test

has she been allegry tested?? DOne blood work of any kind???
post #5 of 28
Avacado oil is another home remedy that might help.
post #6 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
WHat is she eating and how old is she >???

Many times a allergy can be found and controlled without a one meat and one starch test

has she been allegry tested?? DOne blood work of any kind???
Yes she's on green pea & rabbit diet...IVO brand or something like that. She has gotten blood work done - she's allergic to dandelions and 2 types of mold.

She's 5 years old.


Quote:
Get her on really good flea control, feed a limited antigen diet (venison and pea, duck and pea) with NO TREATS or other outside food sources, make sure your vet has checked her for demodex cati and performed a fungal culture, and start saving for the intradermal testing.
Misskiwi - yeah that's what she's on. I don't give her any treats or outside food. I'm no strange to this, it's been going on for a year.

I don't know about demodex....She did get a skin scrape and did a fungal culture both were negative except for a slight infection which was cleared up by Clavamox in a week back in April.
post #7 of 28
Have you tried shampoos, such as oatmeal to help soothe the skin and remove allergens stuck in the coat?
post #8 of 28
Is she an indoor-only cat?
post #9 of 28
In the category of RCVD diets (what you are currently using) have you tried any of the other protein sources? Believe it or not, the venison seems to be the top seller (back when i sold it)....

also if she is allergic to two types of mold, and this started when you moved....well... there's your answer!
post #10 of 28
PEAS are actually a BIG KNOWN cat allergy ... DO NOT ask me why they use them in elimination type diets... have you tried wet food only with her?? .. Do you have access to and or willing to try a holistic vet???
post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 
Yes, she's all indoor cat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Petstorejunkie View Post
In the category of RCVD diets (what you are currently using) have you tried any of the other protein sources? Believe it or not, the venison seems to be the top seller (back when i sold it)....

also if she is allergic to two types of mold, and this started when you moved....well... there's your answer!
Ok - but now what? I can't move BACK... I moved 500 miles and I plan on moving out of this apartment in the spring if I can, but until then, what am I supposed to do? Besides, she's had behavioral issues before with aggression and the overgrooming so originally I thought it was that but now I'm wondering if it isn't a combination of the two somehow.

Quote:
PEAS are actually a BIG KNOWN cat allergy ... DO NOT ask me why they use them in elimination type diets... have you tried wet food only with her?? .. Do you have access to and or willing to try a holistic vet???
Wow, peas? Why would they give out a pea diet if cats were prone to allergies with it?!?!? Makes no sense...I do have wet food to change it up sometimes and its the same flavor just in cans.. But the other thing is that the vet said she's got some tartar build up and that if I can try keeping her on dry so that it doesn't get worse.

I did just get recommended a holistic vet but I don't really know what that means.

Actually I've been giving her 2 doses of the Apple Cider Vinegar and her coat has already improved - it's a lot softer. We'll see. I got to take the e-Collar off tonight. Not sure if it's the new medicine or the ACV but she's not trying to eat herself alive... So, I guess we'll see what happens.
post #12 of 28
DRY food does little to nothing to keep teeth clean ... latest research back this up .. VERY few dry foods have clinical trials showing ANY tarter help

think about it which comes off your teeth better cereal or popcorn ... or a salad or piece of fruit...

Holistic means natural .. ie they dont just treat the issue at hand but also the animal as a WHOLE being

I would caution vinager usage ... I am HIGHLY allerigic to the by products of vinager
post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
PEAS are actually a BIG KNOWN cat allergy ... DO NOT ask me why they use them in elimination type diets... have you tried wet food only with her?? .. Do you have access to and or willing to try a holistic vet???
Can you show me evidence of this?
post #14 of 28
Has your cat been tested for ringworm? A skin culture can be taken at the vet's or you can get an black ultraviolet light to look for evidence yourself before ordering the vet test (you can look up the technique on the internet). I mentioned that I wanted to do this in my post on shedding (in the care&grooming forum).

If it's a pyschological problem - do you think she'd be happy with another cat to keep her company?

Someone mentioned that she might have a mold allergy - if so, organic apple cider vinegar would probably be contraindicated. I've taken the apple cider vinegar myself but I never heard of it being done for a cat.

Hope your kitty gets well soon.
post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Misskiwi67 View Post
Can you show me evidence of this?
I got it from the vet ... oh and folks bringing in their allergy tests ... five yrs ago I saw one pea allergy ... this yr 15 and I am in a small town
post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
I got it from the vet ... oh and folks bringing in their allergy tests ... five yrs ago I saw one pea allergy ... this yr 15 and I am in a small town
Hospital tests for food allergies (intradermal and serum) are worthless. There is no correlation with food trials, and it appears that the animals produce antibodies to all the foods they are exposed to, regardless of allergy. So it would make sense that an animal eating a pea and duck food would come back with a serum test that was positive for peas... but it has absolutely no correlation with allergy status.

If your vet doesn't know that these tests for food allergies are worthless (reading info from the company selling the test instead of scientific research, or using tests that combine with the much more useful environmental tests) then it would make sense that your vet would believe peas cause more allergies because that is what the serum tests are telling him.

Quote:
Diagnostic testing of dogs for food hypersensitivity.
Jeffers JG, Shanley KJ, Meyer EK.

Department of Dermatology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104.

Thirteen food-allergic dogs were studied to evaluate the efficacy of feeding a commercially available egg and rice diet, intradermal skin testing, and serologic testing by ELISA for diagnosing and/or characterizing food hypersensitivity. Feeding of a home-cooked whole lamb meat and rice diet for 3 weeks, followed by challenge with each dog's regular diet, served as the standard for diagnosing food hypersensitivity. Each dog underwent provocative testing with 6 individual ingredients to determine as many of its dietary allergens as possible. Prior to skin testing and serologic testing by ELISA, most dogs had been recently exposed to the offending diet and subsequently manifested clinical signs of allergy. All dogs that tolerated the aforementioned commercial diet were exposed to it for at least 7 weeks; 84.6% of food-hypersensitive dogs ate the commercial diet with impunity. Of the 2 reactors to the commercial diet, only 1 became pruritic in response to provocation testing with chicken eggs. Low sensitivity and high specificity were found for skin testing and the ELISA, indicating a lack of true- and false-positive reactions. Neither the positive nor negative predictive values adequately predicted positive and negative reactions, respectively, for either test. On the basis of these results, the commercial diet, skin testing, and anti-IgE ELISA cannot replace an owner-prepared food elimination diet for food hypersensitivity testing in dogs.
post #17 of 28
UMMM you may want to ask ...lol... skin test s work about 25% of the time... my vet does a different test based on holistic medicine , IN my house it aint been wrong yet ////

LOL at a study NOT double blind of 13 .. try some real research
post #18 of 28
Quote:
Can you show me evidence of this?
Umm yeah... my cat. He's VERY allergic to peas which totally sucks since that's all they seem to want to use in cat foods! I was told that they found that cats preferred peas to potatoes because way back in the day when they were making these diets, all of them were potatoe and novel protein across the board.

Quote:
Hospital tests for food allergies (intradermal and serum) are worthless. There is no correlation with food trials, and it appears that the animals produce antibodies to all the foods they are exposed to, regardless of allergy. So it would make sense that an animal eating a pea and duck food would come back with a serum test that was positive for peas... but it has absolutely no correlation with allergy status.
Although they have a high risk of false negatives, what you're saying is not entirely true. One of the girl's I work with has a dog who has inhaled allergies. She could not get her itching under control and tested her dog. Her dog came up with the highest results our vets had ever seen with most of the allergens bringing in about 3500-4000 untis out of 5000 units. She has successfully given allergy injections and her dog once again has hair. The food portion is basically a waste of money but the allergist told me that any reaction, even if it's not what the test considers "significant" is a reaction. So it all depends on what you're looking for and what vet you are working with.

Quote:
DRY food does little to nothing to keep teeth clean ... latest research back this up .. VERY few dry foods have clinical trials showing ANY tarter help
I agree with Sharky on this one. It's so funny, vets will try to push t/d as the ONLY food proven to keep teeth cleaner, yet they try to tell people that feeding other dry food will improve teeth health. Tell that to my friends cat who doesn't chew at all!

If this definitley is a food thing, or you want to find out if it is. I'd stay away from the Duck & Pea, Venison & Pea. I'd go to something crazy like Addiction's Unagi & Seaweed [although it has peas!] or California Natural Sweet Potato and Herring, just something way different that you know your cat won't have had any exposure to.
post #19 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
UMMM you may want to ask ...lol... skin test s work about 25% of the time... my vet does a different test based on holistic medicine , IN my house it aint been wrong yet ////

LOL at a study NOT double blind of 13 .. try some real research
Welcome to the world of veterinary medicine. If you can do better, lets see it! I want some PROOF that intradermal tests work for food allergies, because I've been taught differently.

I was also on my way to class this morning, and just grabbed the first relevant abstract, it wasn't exactly a thorough perusal of every article ever written, but my perusal was based on what I've been taught. Here at the veterinary teaching hospital, the board certified dermatologist teaches that they're a waste of client money.
post #20 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Plebayo View Post
Although they have a high risk of false negatives, what you're saying is not entirely true. One of the girl's I work with has a dog who has inhaled allergies. She could not get her itching under control and tested her dog. Her dog came up with the highest results our vets had ever seen with most of the allergens bringing in about 3500-4000 untis out of 5000 units. She has successfully given allergy injections and her dog once again has hair. The food portion is basically a waste of money but the allergist told me that any reaction, even if it's not what the test considers "significant" is a reaction. So it all depends on what you're looking for and what vet you are working with.
Serum tests for inhalant allergies are very representative... so it would make sense that the allergy injections worked well for that dog.

Serum testing for food allergies is NOT effective... two different types of reactions with two different types of tests.

Intradermal testing is considered gold standard for inhalant allergies, but does not work for food allergies either...
post #21 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Misskiwi67 View Post
Welcome to the world of veterinary medicine. If you can do better, lets see it! I want some PROOF that intradermal tests work for food allergies, because I've been taught differently.

I was also on my way to class this morning, and just grabbed the first relevant abstract, it wasn't exactly a thorough perusal of every article ever written, but my perusal was based on what I've been taught. Here at the veterinary teaching hospital, the board certified dermatologist teaches that they're a waste of client money.
YES in about 3 out of 4 they would be... MY vet uses a practice that pre dates modern medicine.. it works and also in humans... lol ... Human drs have nearly killed me 5 times in 30 yrs ... guess who figured out what was wrong and either managed it of fixed it ??? ...

I am glad a vet school is teaching but since it does help a moderate % it should not be discounted ... In my PERSONAL experience it worked 33% of the time and was accurate in that case ... In the other two cases it showed mild to MAJOR but still sent a signal

IN MOST cases read first but expeirence is the best card ...
post #22 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
YES in about 3 out of 4 they would be... MY vet uses a practice that pre dates modern medicine.. it works and also in humans... lol ... Human drs have nearly killed me 5 times in 30 yrs ... guess who figured out what was wrong and either managed it of fixed it ??? ...

I am glad a vet school is teaching but since it does help a moderate % it should not be discounted ... In my PERSONAL experience it worked 33% of the time and was accurate in that case ... In the other two cases it showed mild to MAJOR but still sent a signal

IN MOST cases read first but expeirence is the best card ...
If a vaccine worked 25% of the time, would you recommend it to the average cat owner?

33 % of the time... and in the OTHER TWO cases... so you are basing your experience off 3 cases, but laugh at a study of 13 cases? Your personal experience is hardly double blinded...
post #23 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Misskiwi67 View Post
If a vaccine worked 25% of the time, would you recommend it to the average cat owner?
not likely as if a vaccine only worked 25% then it likely would cause an adverse reaction in 25% /// For the most part allergy tests are not done yearly or every three yrs.. But many use vaccine s with out KNOWING the risks and that is about 80% of pet owners ...

Also the allergy tests are NOT left in the body of the animal thus it is a apple to orange arguement
post #24 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
not likely as if a vaccine only worked 25% then it likely would cause an adverse reaction in 25% /// For the most part allergy tests are not done yearly or every three yrs.. But many use vaccine s with out KNOWING the risks and that is about 80% of pet owners ...

Also the allergy tests are NOT left in the body of the animal thus it is a apple to orange arguement
Allergy tests are injections, just the same as vaccinations... or at least the one my dog has had. He's had 2 intradermal tests in 2 years...

But you agree... that in general the average intelligent person would not recommend something that only worked 25% of the time, especially not when expecting to trust the results 100%?? Interpretation is everything...

Although, I must admit, diphenhydramine (benadryl) also works in only 25% of canines... and that is regularly recommended by many. I'm not sure if everyone realizes it only works 25% of the time though???
post #25 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Misskiwi67 View Post
Allergy tests are injections, just the same as vaccinations... or at least the one my dog has had. He's had 2 intradermal tests in 2 years...

But you agree... that in general the average intelligent person would not recommend something that only worked 25% of the time, especially not when expecting to trust the results 100%?? Interpretation is everything...

Although, I must admit, diphenhydramine (benadryl) also works in only 25% of canines... and that is regularly recommended by many. I'm not sure if everyone realizes it only works 25% of the time though???
With allergies I think we can agree most people are frantic for a "Cure".... thus 25% is better than nothing.... he he on the Benadryl ...
post #26 of 28
Wow, a real debate... again... Is this going to be one of the threads like the Do you believe in declawing thread?? cause that got REAL annoying after a while... I hate all the numbers you post, and the fact that you're only a student leads me to think I shouldn't believe a word out of your mouth.... Anyone can get that stuff off the internet or off of books, we're looking for something that really helps, and has been proven by experience to actually work!

Hows everything you're doing working so far?? Things still going well??? I hope so!! Good luck and good To ya!!
post #27 of 28
To the O.P.: Good luck with your kitty. My cat Toby recently started showing allergy symptoms as well (just one more thing on top of everything else with him) and now I'm feeding the NB duck/green pea... I am also in the same boat with you on the vet bills deal... I make too little to afford allergy testing (whether it's viable or not), so I'm just eliminating things to see what works.

That said, if your cat will eat wet food, you might want to look into the EVO 95% meat cans... They have chicken/turkey, beef, duck, venison, and rabbit... So, if you know that your cat is not allergic to one of those, or hasn't been exposed to one, might be worth a shot... They're a very good product, only have that single protien source, and come in large cans, so somewhat less expensive to feed (And NO peas or grains).

My cats have tried all of them, cared for the chicken/turkey and beef the most (of course), which I can't feed toby now... I will be ordering the venison cans soon to go along with his NB duck/pea and the NB cans.

In a side note, if your cat has tested for mold allergy, is it a type of mold that is harmful to humans? Has your apartment been tested for mold or could you request it? Have YOU shown any reactions that could be due to mold (stuffy nose, constant headache, etc.)? Just wondering because mold can be a serious health risk for humans as well...

Hope this helps,
Art
post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by glitch View Post
and the fact that you're only a student leads me to think I shouldn't believe a word out of your mouth.... Anyone can get that stuff off the internet or off of books, we're looking for something that really helps, and has been proven by experience to actually work!
Yes, I know, I'm ONLY a student. Only 12 weeks and counting, will you care what I have to say when I have a job and some numbers behind my name?? Something tells me its doubtful... but 8 years of school AND access to veterinary journals, conference proceedings and textbooks should count for something as well. Yes, most people can go to pubmed and look up the research articles, but how many actually do? Everyone here is here for the easy way out... what does so and so think? I'm just adding another spectrum of information...

Yes, personal experience counts for a LOT, but "I saw such and such once" should NOT be considered better information than expert opinions from books and research articles. If I state something that is JUST my opinion, I'll say so, and you can take that statement as JUST another opinion.

I'm one of the few people here that backs up what I have to say with factual information. Is it annoying because you don't want to hear it, because you can't give me contradictory facts, or because you just don't like me??? Please answer, I'd love to know how I can be more helpful... or if I'm just a pain in the patookas, I'll take my "limited student experiences" elsewhere.
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