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Allergy testing and injections

kauna

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Hi everyone! Just looking to see if anyone has experience with allergy injections with their sphynx?

I recently took Agnes to the veterinary dermatologist as she has had recurrent skin infections for a couple of years now. I have been giving medicated baths, antibiotics for flare ups and have even changed foods all to no avail. They clear up and come right back again. After waiting a couple months to get an appointment for a consultation I met with a great veterinarian, his brother also has a bambino sphynx!

I couldn't do the allergy testing that day due to Agnes also having asthma and needing to be off her inhaler for at least a month as to not interfere with the results. We did blood allergy testing last week and the vet emailed me that she had "lots and lots of positives on the test. She reacted to every single grass, tree and weed on the test and also has a dust mite allergy". I am taking her back in to have a few poke tests done to check a couple of other allergy possibilities, it won't be for a month due to my schedule and not wanting to start allergy serum injections and having to skip due to travel (also not something I want to have a pet sitter do in the very beginning) I will hopefully get a full copy of the test results soon.

Any information would be greatly appreciated!
 

Toa and Ross

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Never heard of allegy injections before so hoping other members chime in.
Hope it'll work for Agnes!
 

Yoda mom

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@kauna (((hugs))))
I dealt with horrid allergies with my dog
The vet said I could get too many false positives for allergy testing and didn't recommend it for my boys case .

Sam got an injection of "dexamathasone" for allergies and a change of diet - food trial to see what finally worked

Is it a dexamethasone injection for Agnes?

(chewy.com also has dexamethasone in pill form for about 14 cents a pill
Just to share in case that is the meds vet thinks is best )
 

kauna

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Thanks @Toa and Ross and @Yoda mom!

The dermatologist is recommending an allergy serum injection. It is similar to what people with allergies that get allergy injections. It is supposed to build up her immune system to not react to the things that are causing her allergies. So far it seems that she has all environmental allergies and not food allergies.

I am hopeful that this will help with her skin breakouts.
 

NinaGato

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I'll be interested to see what comes of the serum injections. One of our sphynx has bad allergies but she cannot have steroids at all because of her HCM.
 

kauna

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@Condo commando Absolutely!

We started with a blood allergy test. They drew some blood and sent it for analysis took about a week or so for results. It is called a Heska allergy testing. I will be taking her back for what the vet referred to as poke allergy testing. For that they will do a couple of pokes similar to people allergy testing. I am familiar with dogs having this test done. Usually they are shaved and then poked with several needles to see what the pet is allergic to based on the welts they can create a serum to build up immunity so as to not have reactions.
 

kauna

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I'll be interested to see what comes of the serum injections. One of our sphynx has bad allergies but she cannot have steroids at all because of her HCM.
I am hesitant to do any long term oral or injectable steroids mainly due to long term steroid use in cats can lead to diabetes. It's already bad enough with her having both asthma and allergies.
 

Condo commando

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@Condo commando Absolutely!

We started with a blood allergy test. They drew some blood and sent it for analysis took about a week or so for results. It is called a Heska allergy testing. I will be taking her back for what the vet referred to as poke allergy testing. For that they will do a couple of pokes similar to people allergy testing. I am familiar with dogs having this test done. Usually they are shaved and then poked with several needles to see what the pet is allergic to based on the welts they can create a serum to build up immunity so as to not have reactions.
Thanks - I always wondered how they could test.
 

kauna

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Good Morning fellow Lairians! Hope all is well!

Quick update on Agnes. We got the allergy serum on Tuesday. They did a couple of additional skin poke tests to see if she was allergic to dogs, dust and something else I cannot remember. Good news not allergic to dogs! (She has a k9 brother and sister and I also foster for a local rescue) bad news she is allergic to human dander!

We did a trial run with giving an injection using saline solution. Wasn't as difficult as I anticipated. I have 3 different vials of serum. The first bottle is the least concentrated, followed by the second bottle that is a little more concentrated and the third which is the full concentration. I start every other day with the first bottle. The first dose was 0.1 cc, then skip a day then 0.2 cc, skip another day and 0.4 cc and so on until I get to 0.8 cc. Then we go to the next bottle and do the same thing followed by the third bottle again the same until we get to 0.5 cc and she gets that every 21 days. We are only getting her to 0.5 cc of the fully concentrated due to her having asthma also, the vet doesn't want to exacerbate her asthma symptoms.

I have to be careful of the side effects while giving these injections, as they are allergens that she is allergic to, so I have to give the injections when I can watch her for at least 2 hours post so to be sure she isn't having a reaction such as Hives, swollen face, vomiting/diarrhea, difficulty breathing, excessive panting, or difficulty standing or weakness. (yes, nothing to be scared of right :eek:)

Day 1 started, not too bad. No reactions and took the injection like a champ! (of course I was bribing her with food!! :ROFLMAO:)

The allergy injections can take 3-6 months before you start to notice an improvement. Maximal improvement can take 12-18 months.

Cost initially for the consult and testing was about $600. The serum and needles were $250, and should last about 5 months. In the long run it might cheaper than the multiple vet visits for skin flare ups and medications.

I will keep updating this thread with any updates, complications and results. Please, feel free to ask any questions you might have. I have searched lots of sites for as much information as possible and have had difficulty finding any results. My vet did say that she has another feline client that is doing this as well and is having much improvement. The other cat isn't a sphynx, nor does she have asthma but it is definitely helping her with her skin allergies.
 

NinaGato

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Thank you for the update. Allergic to humans...that is a new one to me. Hope you have improvement
 

Toa and Ross

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Thank you for the update. Hopefully with the meds she can handle the human dander!
 

kauna

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Thank you for the update. Allergic to humans...that is a new one to me. Hope you have improvement
Thank you for the update. Hopefully with the meds she can handle the human dander!

Thank you for the well wishes! I was a little surprised to hear that she is allergic humans also. Fingers crossed this helps! I had a bulldog previously that I did the blood allergy testing on and he was allergic to cats. He did well with medicated bathing though and benedryl.
 

Yoda mom

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@kauna oh Agnes ! We are sending a lair full of positve vibes !
Following closely for updates!
Head smooches to all paws
 

kauna

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Allergy injection update:

First vial dosing done! Now we move to the second vial tomorrow and start at the beginning dose and continue to give the injections every other day and increase with each injection. I only had 1 mishap during the first round of injections, I somehow poked through the skin and didn't get the serum in correctly. I had to re administer the dose that evening. I have been giving the injections behind the head/neck. The hardest one was the 0.8cc injection. It seemed like a lot to try to inject and towards the end she was starting to get flustered with me. (Understandable from her perspective though)

We haven't had any other issues to speak of really. Her skin is still breaking out but not as horrible as it usually is and to be expected. No asthma issues or flare ups either. I think her having a reaction is my greatest fear. I am sure to give the injection when I can watch her at least 2 hours post to be sure of no reactions.
 
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kauna

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@Yoda mom Thanks for checking on Agnes!

So far so good. I think she is starting to suspect when the injection is coming and she protests a little. She is smart and figures things out like that. Just like when I have to give her pills for a couple weeks she learns the routine and tries to avoid getting her medication lol! silly girl! No asthma flare ups with the injections so that's a plus. I had no idea that I would have a kitty with both asthma and allergies like we have. Asthma in cats is pretty rare. Thank goodness she has insurance and it is all covered, I just have to worry about the premium each year. haha!
 

Sheldon13

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@Yoda mom Thanks for checking on Agnes!

So far so good. I think she is starting to suspect when the injection is coming and she protests a little. She is smart and figures things out like that. Just like when I have to give her pills for a couple weeks she learns the routine and tries to avoid getting her medication lol! silly girl! No asthma flare ups with the injections so that's a plus. I had no idea that I would have a kitty with both asthma and allergies like we have. Asthma in cats is pretty rare. Thank goodness she has insurance and it is all covered, I just have to worry about the premium each year. haha!
But it’s so great she won the mom lottery and got a mom who is trying to deal with all of the issues.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 

kauna

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But it’s so great she won the mom lottery and got a mom who is trying to deal with all of the issues.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
@Sheldon13 Thank you!

I have been told that previously. I have a knack for getting pets that have health issues. (Previous pets included) I am also a foster mom for a local rescue that pulls dogs from a high kill shelter in the city that are timestamped for euthanasia. The current foster has all kinds of issues. (skin, thyroid, arthritis and weight) He is 6yrs but has the body of an 8-10yr old, plus he is a mastiff mix. He's the sweetest dog ever! I was talking about him to one of the vet techs that I worked with at the vet hospital that I take my pets to and she said the same thing! That he couldn't have gone to a better foster home. We have had him since 11/1 and he has made a complete turn around! Doesn't even look like the same dog!
 

Staceyxxx

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Binky recently came off her meds and got allergy tested from the dermatologist and skin scrapings and blood test and they all came back normal! The one the vet did had lots of things that she was allergic too, but the dermatologist opinion is if we tested 10 cats we would probably have the same results and her body should t be reacting like this! The injections she received where steroid injections! So she is now on steroid tabs x 2 daily and atopica and allergy food specific! After 3 weeks her skin is starting to improve but dermatologist was hoping to have seen a better improvement but that’s Binky never straight forward :ROFLMAO:

Sending you guys hugs and head rubs! I will Be checking in for updates! {=
 

kauna

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@Staceyxxx thank you for the support!

I would be careful of any long term steroid use as it can cause diabetes in cats. Allergies can certainly be tricky! We have spent the better part of the last year and a half battling recurrent skin infections. They would clear up on antibiotics and after a few days be back again. Diet changes, litter changes, medicated baths nothing seemed to help. Her skin would get clear for a few days and inevitably the rash would return. I felt like we were fighting a losing battle and going in circles. The dermatologist that I was referred to has a lot of experience with allergy serum injections. They make the serum at the office. His brother also has a bambino sphynx so he is familiar with the sphynx breed. The allergy injections are not always 100% but a good percentage of cats do find relief from getting the injections (or so I am told) It may take about 5 months to start to really notice an improvement. He is also being cautious due to her also having asthma. Her maintenance dose is only going to be 0.5cc (I'm not sure what it is usually for other cats) To say I have a tough case is an understatement lol! I wouldn't trade her though.

We start the full dose of vial 3 in a few days. She gets the last dose of vial 2 tomorrow.

I finally attached some pictures to the process. The second one with her is to show where I give the injection. I give it just under the skin in that triangle area between her shoulders. It's a small syringe and needle thank goodness!
 

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Staceyxxx

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Aww bless ur baby, ur a good mamma looking after her so well..! Oh am goin note all this down and speak to the dermatologist, thank you so much for all the info! Yeah am so scared of steriods she has to stay on them for 5 weeks in total then I go for a review as I asked was this the last option as the side effects are horrible and she sleeps a lot because of them! But here is hoping it all goes well! Sending love to u and ur kitty xxx
 

Yoda mom

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@kauna
Hello , Checking in on Agnes
Big hugs to you for all your love amd dedication to animals
And being their angel
Look forward to updates pics of your pup too!

Head smooches to all paws !

Thank you for sharing the allergy injection pics
Helpful for all of us
 

kauna

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Aggie update: we are almost at the maintenance dose of 0.5cc every 21 days. We had a minor setback of a skin flare up that miss Aggie wouldn’t stop licking. I figured this would happen as we are injecting all of her allergy triggers directly into her system. So went back to our regular vet to look at it (of course it was a Saturday) vet prescribed a 2 week course of antibiotics and medicated bathing twice weekly and I put the cone of shame on her to try and keep her from licking. Next dose for allergy injections is not until 4/10 then we are on the maintenance regimen.
I couldn’t get a great picture of her abdomen and hind end but on the last picture you can see a portion of it. Will try again when she isn’t cranky. Just gave her a bath and she’s not a fan.
 

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