I grew up with cats my whole life. I haven't had one for a few years but have been around others' cats with no problem. We adopted a cat, Bodhi, a week and a half ago and I seem to be allergic to him. I get itchy eyes, sudden severe congestion, and when he gets saliva on me my skin itches. My symptoms are (mostly) relieved by claritin but that's not a good long-term solution. I've done a lot of reading about it and I did read that testosterone greatly increases the level of allergen the cat produced. Our Bodhi was only neutered two weeks before we got him, and he's 2, so it will take a while for his testosterone levels to go down. I'm hoping that will lessen my allergies. We have stopped letting him in our bedroom and I cleaned our sheets and blanket. I don't let him rub his face on my face anymore (not easy to stop him, he is so cuddly!)
I suppose my next step is to see an allergist. I guess I'm just wondering if anyone out there has developed a cat allergy later in life (I'm 37 for goodness sake!) and if you were able to overcome it enough to make it possible to live with a cat. I'll do the shots if I need to. Is there other stuff I can do, maybe to boost my own immune system? Help!