If you’re reading CatTime, there’s a solid chance you’re deeply appreciative of the feline form.
But spare a thought for those humans who suffer from cat allergies, which can not only cause the person to have extreme histamine reactions, but in many cases, can prevent them from being able to adopt a cat.
Well, according to the science lab over at pet food purveyor Purina, we might be successfully inching towards a legitimate cure for cat allergies.
The Science Of Finding A Cat Allergy Cure
With the knowledge that one in five humans is allergic to cats–a figure that comes from a 2007 European Community Respiratory Health Survey report–Purina claims that, after a decade of research, they have discovered that “an egg product ingredient” that contains “antibodies to Fel d1” could potentially be added to a cat’s diet.
What does all this science mean?
Well, Fel d1 is said to be the most notable cat allergen that may be responsible for up to 95 percent of cat-related allergic effects, but it’s also something cats naturally produce.
When cats groom themselves, the substance is spread to the feline’s hair, which in turn sheds. That’s normally when a human experiences allergic reactions.
The breakthrough, Purina claims, works by “binding Fel d1 in the cat’s saliva, preventing its ability to trigger an allergic response in a cat allergen-sensitized individual.”
The report continues, “Ultimately this will reduce active Fel d1 levels in the environment. This approach maintains normal allergen production by the cat, without affecting the cat’s overall physiology.”
Tests show that, after three weeks, Fel d1 in the kitties’ saliva dropped by 47 percent.
Can You Cure Your Cat Allergy By Changing Your Cat’s Diet?
Basically, if things go according to plan, you’ll be able to tweak your cat’s diet in the near future in the hopes of lowering their allergy-inducing powers. That’s important news even if you’re not personally allergic to cats.
However, before you go feeding your cat a bunch of eggs, understand that these scientists are extracting ingredients in a controlled lab setting. Just because the ingredient that reduces cat allergens comes from eggs doesn’t mean feeding your cat eggs works the same way.
For now, we’ll just have to wait for Purina to collect more results. They’re hoping to use their findings to provide solutions to make humans less allergic to cats. We’re better off leaving that to the professionals.
According to the American Humane Association, 16 percent of people avoid living with a cat due to allergies, and 11 percent of people who’ve given away a cat cite allergies as the reason behind the decision.
Fewer cat allergies mean more kitty adoptions, which is science we can all get behind.
What do you think of these results? Do you think changing a cat’s diet can make them less likely to cause allergic reactions? Let us know in the comments below!