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Your dog may be allergic to plant particles or some substances in the food or air, and these substances are called Allergens. When allergens are inhaled or absorbed through the skin, gastrointestinal tract, or respiratory tract, it stimulates the immune system and releases histamine and other substances. And this results in erythema (reddening of the skin), edema (swelling), and pruritis (itching), which are signs of inflammation.
Any dog can be allergic to substances in the air. The age of onset is usually around six months and three years. Itching is the most common sign of airborne dog allergies. The most often affected areas are the feet, face, ears, front legs, and abdomen, but scratching the entire body is common. And scratching may cause secondary signs of wounds, skin and ear infections, scabbing, scaling, and hair loss. Atopic dermatitis’s primary target is the skin, but around 15% of affected dogs may develop rhinitis and asthma.
Atopic dermatitis is a lifelong disease, and it requires long-term management and regular visit to a dog allergist. This treatment has several options: avoiding the offending allergen(s), bathing and improving coat hygiene, controlling the signs of itching, controlling flare factors, and immunotherapy. A good management plan requires various treatments, the understanding and reasonable expectations from the dog owner, and regular progress assessments; therefore, the program can be adjusted as necessary. Always follow your dog allergist instructions carefully.
Food allergies are less common compare to airborne allergies among dogs. Any dog breed may develop food allergies; however, Labrador Retrievers, West Highland White Terriers, and Cocker Spaniels have a higher risk. There is a similarity of signs between airborne allergies and food allergies, except there is a little difference in itching intensity from one season to another. The age of onset is changeable.
Food allergies can be determined by feeding a limited foodstuff diet and seeing if the itching disperse. Blood and skin test are less reliable in detecting food allergies. You should consult your dog allergist about developing a specific test plan for your dog. The proper food elimination diet has to be well-balanced and nutritionally complete and does not include any ingredients that have been fed before to your dog. A substitute to an elimination diet is a prescription diet with hydrolyzed proteins; these proteins are broken down into parts that your dog’s body can not recognize.
The foods that dogs are allergic to include beef, chicken, corn, eggs, wheat, soy, and milk. After determining the offending allergens, you must avoid giving those foods to your dog. If your dog has allergies to other things such as plant pollen or flea, it will harder to determine underlying food allergies.
Visit the nearest Dog Allergist in Stockton to determine if your dog has allergies.
There are several standard drugs that your dog allergist may suggest that can treat dog allergies:
These drugs block the effects of substances that trigger dog allergy symptoms. Diphenhydramine, loratadine, and cetirizine are often used as antihistamines; they help relieve symptoms of allergy or counteract allergic reactions. Antihistamine usually makes some dogs drowsy, and some are hyperactive.
You can use anti-allergy wipes for your dog after going outside and rolls in the grass. You can also bathe your dog regularly with a hypo-allergenic shampoo. There are some veterinary shampoos made to lessen itching and dryness.
Fish oil supplementation sometimes works well with some dogs. This supplement helps reduce inflammation that comes from skin allergies and helps skin cells maintain strong protection against allergens. Visit a dog allergist before giving your dog a fish oil supplement since fish oil is not indicated for all dogs.
Better visit a vet clinic or dog allergist if you notice symptoms of any allergies on your dog. Your vet will conduct some tests and assessments to determine if your dog has allergies and what kind of allergy it has.
Dog Allergist Stockton is specialized in treating dog allergies. Our team has been helping dog and dog owners in dealing with dog allergies in Stockon. Visit us today or call us if you have further questions about dog allergies.