Horse Allergies – Symptoms and Treatments

November 15, 2009

in Cat Health

People can be allergic to many things and some people are allergic to horses. Depending on the person, this can result in one or more of the following symptoms: – Itchy or watery eyes – Itchy or running nose – Itchy skin, hives or rashes – Sneezing or coughing – Difficulty breathing – Asthma attack

The severity of these symptoms can range from a minor runny nose to a serious asthma attack. In the case of asthma sufferers, care should be taken when first coming into contact with horses, as there have been a few cases of fatal asthma attacks. This is doubly true for asthmatic children, who in the excitement of being with horses may not notice the early symptoms, so they should be monitored by an adult when first encountering horses to ensure that they do not have a serious adverse reaction.

Horse dander (essentially dandruff) is the most common source of horse allergies. However, people can be allergic to urine, salvia or even horse mites. There are at least five different horse proteins which can be allergic agents.

It is not uncommon for people to have an allergic reaction without being near a horse, through indirect contact. For example, if you enter a barn or other enclosed space where horses have been, one can come into contact with allergic agents even though the horses are not present at the time. Likewise, if a family member rides or works with horses, it is possible to have a reaction upon exposure to clothes or tack which they bring home which are carrying bits of allergic agents (e.g. dander).

Horse allergies can be easily treated, using the same methods as for other allergies. These include medication, desensitizing treatment or simple avoidance.

If you wish to ride but are allergic to horses, you may wish to try the ‘curly horse’ breeds as many people who suffer from horse allergies find that they are not allergic to these breeds.

You may also wish to be medically tested to determine which aspect of horses you are allergic to. For example, if you are allergic to horse mites, treatment of the horse and its box against mites may reduce your symptoms to acceptable levels. Likewise, if it is urine or saliva you are allergic to, one can take care to avoid these specific elements when involved with horses.

Doug Stewart is the author of Allergy to Horses and other Horse Care articles.

Similar Posts Other People Have Read:

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: