ZocdocAnswersCan animal allergies cause rashes on one's skin?

Question

Can animal allergies cause rashes on one's skin?

Can you get a rash on your skin from an allergice reaction to an animal? Ever since my family got a dog, I've had a rash that has moved and spread, and it comes and goes? but I'd never heard of this kind of reaction to animals. I thought they just gave people cold symptoms...?

Answer

Pet allergies are one of the most common medical problems and people commonly seek medical advice for dealing with them. The doctors who will be well qualified to discuss this issue with you in greater detail include your primary care doctor. Allergies to dogs are quite common, and are usually provoked by allergens in the dead dry skin that flakes off of the dog and settles on furniture and other surfaces and also floats in the air. Dog allergies most commonly manifest as itchy eyes, nasal congestion and sneezing, and in more serious cases cough, wheezing, and asthma like symptoms. However, skin rash can also be a symptoms. The common rash is 'hives' which are itchy and come and go in patches over the skin, just as you describe. In other words, it is highly likely that this rash is a reaction to the dog, but you also should consider other possible exposures which may be new (soaps, laundry detergents, chemicals, etc). As always the diagnosis and the management of your particular concerns will require a physical examination by your personal physician. Setting up an office visit with your primary care doctor might be indicated.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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