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Spring is finally upon us! And with it, seasonal allergies… Unfortunately, humans aren’t the only ones faced with itchy skin, watery eyes, and runny noses this time of year.
Canine allergies are normally caused by the same triggers that lead to human allergies: our pooch’s immune system comes across an allergen or a kind of antigen it dislikes and then responds in the same manner as our body does. These allergens normally include mold and mildew, pollen, and dust mites. The good thing is that there are several ways for us to treat seasonal allergies in our dogs.
Common Signs and Symptoms
Allergies in canines usually present themselves in the form of skin inflammation or irritation, also referred to as allergic dermatitis.
This condition normally results in Fido’s skin becoming extremely itchy. To relieve the itchiness, your dog will scratch himself excessively, and chew or bite certain parts of his body. He might even rub himself against the carpet, furniture, or wall. As this disturbing itch-and-scratch cycle persists, your pooch’s skin will eventually become inflamed and sore to the touch. Hair loss, hot spots, scabbing, and open sores on your dog’s skin may also be observed. Other symptoms can include ear infection, respiratory symptoms like watery eyes, sneezing, and runny nose, and generalized redness.
How to Help Fido Cope with Seasonal Allergies
1. To provide your dog with complete, immediate relief from itchiness, try to wash away the allergens on his coat and skin by giving him frequent baths. Look for a dog shampoo specially formulated for inflamed or sensitive skin.
2. To lessen the significant amount of allergens that Fido tracks and spread all over your house is to wash his paws thoroughly each time he comes inside the house. In times of high pollen and other allergens, keep a portable paw wash near entryways.
3. Try keeping the spots in your place where your pooch spends most of his time as free from allergens as possible. Do this by cleaning and vacuuming the floors and his bedding on a regular basis using non-toxic house cleaning agents.
4. Since allergies are basically an immune system response, it’s crucial for you to keep Fido’s immune function at its optimum levels. To do this, avoid any unnecessary vaccination and medication and make sure he’s eating a well-balanced, species appropriate diet free of unnecessary fillers and animal by-products.
5. If your dog is highly susceptible to seasonal allergies, see to it that his diet is remarkably low in grain content since foods rich in carbohydrates can trigger and worsen inflammation.
The same ways that you cope with seasonal allergies will only help your dog as well. Make sure air conditioner filters are changed every month, use a vacuum with an allergen filter, and maintain a healthy diet.
For mild allergic reactions and mild itching, your vet can recommend an antihistamine or provide the proper dosage of over-the-counter allergy medication to treat him.