Cats can develop allergies to pollen, weeds, grasses, mold spores, house dust, feathers, wool, insect stings, drugs, chemicals, and food ingredients. Cats' symptoms involve itchy skin, lace, and ears. Typical warning signs include compulsive rubbing against furniture or carpet and excessive scratching, licking, or chewing at itchy places. Gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea also can occur, particularly if the allergen, or allergy-causing substance, is ingested in a food or drug. Redness, crusty skin, and hair loss around the nose, mouth, and face suggest a food allergy, or possibly an allergy to plastic feeding dishes. In the latter case, replacing plastic dishes with lead-free ceramic or stainless steel dishes offers an easy remedy. Most allergy cases are not so simple. Testing exists, but allergies remain difficult to diagnose. Treatment varies widely from patient to patient. Recovery can take a long time, and owners may have to reduce the allergen in the cat's environment for as long as the animal lives.