Allergic To Just One Of My Piggies

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Brandy

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I have two guinea pigs, CC and Poppy, I've discovered recently that I am allergic to one of them but not both. At first it seemed I was allergic to both of them; I got the sniffles and had itchy watery eyes. Eventually those symptoms went away and now I just get hives when I pick one of them up.

When I hold CC she could cuddle and rub all over me and it would never bother me, but Poppy makes me break out into itchy hives and my skin turns all red. The symptoms have gotten worse and I cannot understand why I'm perfectly fine with CC but not Poppy. It makes it harder to bond with one of my guinea pigs because once her body rubs against my bare skin it sometimes becomes unbearable. I'm wondering if its because they are different breeds of guinea pig and perhaps I'm allergic to one type of dander as opposed to the other. Or perhaps I'm allergic to their urine, and Poppy has never let me bathe her but CC has.

Help please! I want to love both of my piggies equally.
 

Kerrie74

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Hiya, I have allergies. I'd check with your Dr and see if they can give you something and also when holding the guinea's try and keep your skin fully covered, see if that helps.
 

Tangerine49

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My daughter is allergic to one out of our 5 piggies but not a problem as my son is not so gives cuddles to Coco. It seems to be the smooth hair types that bother her not the rosette ones all our others are rosette.
 

MerryPip

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Different breeds of pig are thought to differ in their likelihood to cause allergy. Pigs with rexoid fur types so rex, teddy, swiss etc seem to be more likely to cause allergy in humans but other factors may also contribute. It may be that as so many piggies are not pure breeds (which isn't a problem!) that they may have whatever characteristic in their skin/hair that causes allergy more often where other piggies don't...

A tricky situation as an owner but snuggling with piggies isn't the only way to spend quality time with them :)
 

Swissgreys

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As someone who suffers from severe allergies, I feel your pain.

Firstly have a word with your regular Dr.
I find that a nasal spray and eye drops can severely reduce an allergic reaction, without the need for more heavy duty oral antihistamines.

When handling your guinea pigs, protect as much of your skin as possible (think long sleeves, maybe cotton gloves as well), and always wash thoroughly with soap and water after handling them (particularly face, arms and hands).

Allergy injections have helped me a lot, but the course took 4 years of regular injections, so isn't an option for everyone.
And oral antihistamines are also very helpful, and these days they don't have many negative side effects.

So hang in there.
There is lots you can do, and even with allergies it is still possible to enjoy time with your pets.
 
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