My dog has skin allergies what can i do
In normal circumstances, our immune system acts to protect us from attack by “foreign” substances, such as bacteria and viruses, thus preventing disease. However, in allergic individuals, the immune system over-reacts to essentially harmless substances, such as pollens, home dust or food proteins. People wheeze or sneeze, but dogs tend to get an itchy skin – some of these dogs will own food allergies. The only way to diagnose this is by trial feeding a low allergy diet and seeing if the condition improves.
Some animals and people are born with the tendency to develop allergies, but they do not generally show symptoms from birth.
Signs often do not come on until six months of age, or even later in life – because a endless period of contact with the allergen is needed.
Just love people, dogs can be allergic to just about anything.
If you don’t discover any fleas or ticks and your dog still has itchy skin, you might be dealing with an allergy of some sort. Before you start any treatment, it’s best to check with your vet to law out what your dog might be allergic to. Food allergies, however, are one of the rarer allergies among dogs.
Finding the Culprit
Food allergies, while rare, do happen and elimination foods can prove necessary to discover out what ingredient(s) your dog is allergic to. You can work with your vet to do novel or hydrolyzed protein food trials to assess for food allergies and to make certain you avoid the trigger protein but also that your dog is being served proper nutrition.
Over the counter limited ingredient foods may not own the quality control to avoid cross-contamination of ingredients, so you and your vet may desire to select a limited antigen therapeutic food that is consistent with the needs of your furry companion.
Visit Your Vet
There are numerous reasons your dog might be itching, but the two most common ailments are pests and allergies. Regardless of the reason, seek veterinary attention correct when you notice your dog itching. Don’t give any medications prior to your vet’s examination and instruction.
Although the treatment might be quick and simple, the final thing you desire is to make a serious decision that causes its own adverse reaction. Whereas fleas and ticks are best treated with prevention (which can be purchased in a variety of forms), food allergies are treated with limited-ingredient foods to eradicate the offending ingredient. Environmental allergies are tougher to treat, but can be easily managed with diligence and expert advice from your veterinarian.
At the finish of the day, keeping your dog clean and limiting his exposure to exterior allergens is essential in keeping your dog’s itchy skin at bay.
Even if your dog’s condition has gotten extreme, there’s nothing a little tender loving care and veterinary treatment can’t repair. Soon enough, you’ll discover your dog back to normal.
Katie Finlay is a pet trainer who lives in Southern California. She has been working with dogs and their owners both in person and through her online content for over six years.
Regular grooming is essential for every dogs, even short-coated ones.
Grooming for 15 to 30 minutes weekly helps reduce the quantity of hair shed in the home. Long-haired breeds need grooming more frequently.
Start when your dog is young so that your dog gets used to the thought as a puppy.
Dogs with normal healthy coats only need bathing every few months. Use a excellent quality baby shampoo. Dry shampoos are only cosmetic – they are no substitute for a bath with shampoo.
- Rinsing must be thorough, getting correct below to the skin, as any remaining shampoo can cause irritation. If you bathe your pet frequently, consider using a jacket conditioner – discuss the choice with your vet.
- Wash your dog’s face carefully whilst avoiding getting shampoo in the eyes
- Wear gloves and an apron to avoid contact with your own skin and read the instructions carefully – some dips for mange, for example, should not be rinsed off
- Wet the jacket first with warm water then apply shampoo along the neck and back – you can dilute one part shampoo to five parts water first for easier rinsing.
Use more water to create a lather then work this gently into the jacket with your fingers – or a rubber brush for long-haired breeds.
- If you own to apply solutions to the dog’s face, cut a bath sponge into little cubes and use these to carefully dab the solution on, avoiding contact with the eyes and lips. If the jacket is greasy or dirty, enquire your vet to recommend a shampoo to use first. Work the shampoo well into the jacket so that it reaches the skin, and leave it on for the length of time stated on the label – generally between five and ten minutes.
- Do not apply protective eye ointments – these may trap shampoo in the eye and make it hard to rinse out
- Only use medicated shampoos if they are prescribed by your vet
- Brush your dog thoroughly beforehand.
Clip off any matted hair first as this is harder to remove once the jacket is wet.
Be careful not to cut your dog’s skin.
- Avoid getting water in your dog’s ears – put some cotton wool in each ear if necessary
- Towel-dry your dog and hold the animal warm until their jacket is properly dry. Brush medium- and long-haired animals gently while damp. Hairdryers can dry out or irritate an animal’s skin – their use is probably best avoided.
If your dog is still itching, but he doesn’t own fleas or a food allergy, he may own some environmental allergies to things love pollen or dander.
A nutrition change may not do much in the way of relief, but your veterinarian may recommend a therapeutic food to improve your dog’s skin health. And your vet will own the best suggestions when confronting environmental allergens.
Depending on the severity of your dog’s itchiness, treatment can range from minor to extensive, going beyond just one method. Simple oral medication might be ideal during the worst parts of the year, along with regular grooming.
Desensitization «allergy injections» may assist a percentage of dogs. Of course, steroid injections and stronger medications are suggested if your dog’s itching persists. Regardless of the cause, you’ll desire to seek your vet’s assessment before taking matters into your own hands.
Protecting Your Pooch
Eliminating the source of environmental allergies can be extremely hard, but not impossible.
Dogs need to go exterior and exercise, though, so keeping them away from pollen completely just isn’t practical. For dogs with itchy skin, wiping below or washing their feet and underbelly after going exterior to do their trade is a grand way to reduce irritation. If your dog has been out playing every day, consider giving him an entire, full-body bath. There are numerous shampoos, conditioners, and even medicated wipes that are designed specifically to remove pollen and reduce the irritation it brings. Hold in mind, however, that too numerous baths can backfire, causing your dog to own dry, itchy skin that needs its own relief.
So should I purchase another brand of food?
Unfortunately it is not so simple.
Most common brands of pet food – even numerous of those described as low allergy or hypoallergenic – contain multiple ingredients. What is needed is a simple diet, preferably of ingredients the dog has not had before, as you are aiming to avoid the foods which produce the allergy. Your vet can recommend special commercial foods or advise on a home-cooked diet. Special hydrolysed protein diets are also available from the vet, which can be useful in diagnosis and treatment of food allergy.
Fleas and Ticks
Once you notice your dog itching, check for fleas and ticks first.
These blood-dependent pests use dogs as hosts every the time, and can latch on anywhere. Ticks can go unnoticed for some time until they become fully engorged and large enough for you to spot and remove. Hold in mind these irritating insects can and do carry a variety of dangerous diseases, so it’s significant to check for them during tick season and any time your dog enters a potentially infested area (anywhere exterior, mind you).
Fleas are less dangerous but just as uncomfortable.
Infestations of this helpful can cause severe itching and skin reactions, sometimes requiring veterinary care. Certain dogs can own allergic reactions to flea bites that cause extremely painful boiling spots, hair loss, swelling, and even infection. Spotting them is sometimes easier than ticks if you check regularly, but in long-coated and dark-colored dogs you might need some additional assist. Brush through your dog’s jacket with a clean flea comb to be certain if you’re dealing with a flea occupation. Flea dirt can be spotted on your dog or in his most common resting areas such as beds and crates.
If you give your dog a bath and notice a reddish brown color in the water, fleas are almost always the cause.
Checking your dog for fleas and ticks is not just a benefit to him, but it can also benefit you and your family. Fleas especially can migrate hosts and infest your whole home. As much as you don’t desire your dog to be itchy, you don’t desire you or your family feeling the same effects. It can also be a excellent thought to check yourself or your children for fleas or ticks after an outdoor excursion for your own health, but also to avoid them spreading to your pup too.
The best treatment for fleas and ticks is prevention.
Because these pests can be so uncomfortable–and dangerous–it’s recommended that flea and tick preventatives are used as frequently as your vet recommends. Keeping these pests away is much easier than trying to clear up an infestation that already exists, and it’ll hold you and your dog more comfortable in the endless run. Be certain to check with your vet to make certain any medicated shampoos and preventatives are the correct dosage and are safe for him to get as well.
There are numerous options available when choosing pest prevention–topical medication, flea and tick collars, sprays, as well as long-lasting shampoos. And if you do discover fleas and ticks on your pup, call your vet immediately for treatment recommendations and be certain to wash your dog’s bedding, as well.
My dog keeps getting sore, itchy patches. The vet says it is fleas – but I own never seen a flea on him!
You will not see fleas on your pet unless they own extremely numerous.
Fleas only spend about ten per cent of their time actually on an animal. Their eggs tend to build up in cracks and crevices, such as below the sides of armchairs. Eggs survive for at least six months and, in warmer months, fleas can even lay eggs outdoors. They are the most common cause of skin problems, but are often hard to discover. The only way to be certain your pet does not own them is by using regular excellent quality flea control.
The flea’s lifestyle makes prevention hard.
You must treat your dog, home and other areas, such as your car and garage, generally with an aerosol spray. You can also get treatments for your dog, which will stop fleas from developing. Even so, it can take a endless time to get rid of a flea infestation, and regular treatment is essential for every dogs, cats and rabbits in the household. Enquire your vet for a excellent quality product, and follow the instructions carefully.
Flea combs, powders, shampoos and collars are not effective for flea control as none of them provides a suitable long-term solution. Herbal products are also ineffective and some (eg tea tree oil) can be toxic.