What are the Basics of Dog Allergies?

Dog owners should watch out for dog allergy symptoms

Allergies are never fun to cope with. Stuffy nose, sneezing, and itchy skin are just a few nuisances one has to deal with when the flowers bloom or the wind blows in a dust storm. One thing to consider is that allergies aren’t just something that humans face; dogs can have allergic reactions just as easily.

As a loving dog owner, it is your responsibility to make sure your dog stays happy and healthy. Allergies aren’t fun for anyone, but for a dog, they can be very annoying- especially since they can’t tell us what’s bothering them.

Signs of a reaction

Allergies affect dogs in the same way, and it’s up to you to discover and diagnose. There are some basic symptoms to watch for, but it’s important to keep an eye on behavior and attitude changes as well.

Itching at the base of their tail is a good sign that something isn’t right. Fleas love this area because it’s easy to hop onto, since dogs often sit in grassy areas. Fleas are a regular cause of allergies, so keep an eye out for any signs of irritation and keep the fleas off your dog.

Constant irritation in any area is another sign of allergies. Dogs scratch occasionally. They might get a tickle or an itch, but if they just can’t stop nibbling and scratching one area, it could be sign of allergies. In some cases, it could also be due to yeast or fungal infections, so beware of multiple causes before you start treatments.

Flakey or irritated skin is another sign of allergies. Dogs might shed regularly and have a little dandruff, but any excess skin flaking is a sign that they have something irritating them.

Swollen paws are a definite sign that they’ve walked into something that doesn’t agree with their body. Early signs would be excessive licking and redness.

Lumps, swelling, and redness are easily detectible on short-fur dogs, but areas such as paws, snout, and ears may show signs of reaction even on long-haired dogs.

Heavy breathing or snoring, due to a swollen airway is something to listen out for. If they have sudden trouble breathing, be cautious about anything they’ve eaten or sniffed around recently.

Sneezing and a runny nose are possibly the most easily spotted symptoms. Dogs may shake off a couple of regular sneezes every now and then, but if they’re sneezing all the time, something is definitely irritating them.

Ingestion can be even more dangerous if your dog has allergies to foods. You may see symptoms such as diarrhea or vomiting.

The causes are numerous, so it’s your job to know where your dog has been and what they’ve encountered recently. Causes such as dust, pollen, mites, fleas, chemical content in pesticides (such as flea collars and shampoo), and food are amongst the most common causes. A veterinarian can help you find the cause if you can’t resolve the issue, especially if it is reoccurring.

What can you do to alleviate symptoms?

Avoiding allergic situations is the best method, but there are times when things get bad, such as seasonal blooming. One of the best practices is to give your dog regular baths to keep dirt and debris out of their fur and off their skin. Most allergic reactions are natural to dust irritation, and bathing helps keep the dirt off your dog and down the drain.

Consult with a veterinarian to discuss anti-histamine solutions. As a warning, human anti-histamines such as Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) can work in an emergency situation, but the dosages are very different for dogs. Do not use human drugs on a dog without consulting with your vet first.

Omega 3 supplements help maintain your dog’s skin and coat. For situations such as itchy or dry skin, this can be a real blessing for any dog. Brewer’s yeast also has skin moisturizing benefits and helps to naturally repel fleas. Additionally, it helps keep their coat luscious and fashionably stylish.

Keep your dog’s environment flea-free. Fleas are one of the most notorious causes for allergies, especially since they are host to many different substances (breeding grounds such as the yard or in dusty areas).

Dogs can get just as itchy and sneezy as you can, so be sure that you keep your dog happy by keeping them out of anything that their body doesn’t approve of. Keep your environment allergy-free so that your dog can stay happy year-round.

Keeping up with your pet supplies can be just another thing you don’t want to have to remember.  After a long day at work and going to the store, the last thing you want to do is have to go “to the store” again.  Consider home delivery of your pet supplies!

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