A lot of dog owners are quite surprised when a vet diagnoses their pet with allergies. Allergies are one of the most common problems in veterinary practice and a lot of dogs who suffer from them will never be cured.
There are two types of main allergies when it comes to dogs: food allergies and seasonal allergies. Food allergies pop up in dogs the same way they do in humans so be aware of new foods you may be introducing into your pet’s diet and the reactions she might have to then. They key to understanding seasonal allergies is to look for a seasonal trend from year to year and do your best to manage the onset of symptoms.
Bitsy hasn’t shown any signs of allergies yet but I am keeping my eyes open. I put together a list of signs that your dog is suffering from seasonal allergies and a few tips about what you can do to help!
Seasonal Allergies: Signs to Look For
1. Obsessive Licking
If your dog is constantly licking herself, especially her belly and paws, this could be a sign that she is bothered by something in her environment.
2. Rubbing Face on Objects
Most of the time your dog will use your carpet, pillows, couches and might even rub her face or body across an entire surface area to alleviate itchiness.
3. Irritated Skin
Like humans, dogs can break out in rashes and hives when exposed to allergens. Pay special attention to the ears, stomach, feet, in between toes, and ears.
4. Chewing at Feet
Pay close attention if your pup is chewing on her paws. There may be inflammation, redness, odor, and brown discoloration where the licking has occurred.
5. Hot Spots
Anything that breaks or irritates the skin can cause these; they are scabs from your canine licking and scratching her skin too much. They can be caused by a variety of factors but they are painful and often contain a lot of bacteria.
Food Allergies: How to Spot Them
1. Increased Bowel Movements
Increased bowel movements does not necessarily mean your dog has a food allergy, but if you are introducing new food items into your pet’s diet it is helpful to be even more aware of her bathroom habits.
Also observe if her stool softer than normal. (Ah, the joys of being a dog parent!)
2. Ear Problems
These are often yeast related. Be aware of swelling, redness, and signs that your dog is in pain.
Observe if your pet is extra itchy, especially in the face, trunk, feet, limb, and anal areas.
If you suspect your dog is suffering from allergies, you should contact your veterinarian right away. However, there are at home treatments as well as preventative measures if you are unable to get to the vet immediately.
1. Electrolyte Replacing Liquids
This is great for hungover humans (believe me, I know) but also helpful if your pup has diarrhea or is vomiting. It can supply your pooch’s body with much needed fluids during her bathroom bouts.
2. Vitamin E
Thia works well for dogs with dry skin. You can give your pup a massage by applying the oil directly to the skin or having her consume a vitamin E pill. If you want your canine to have a relaxing bath you can always have her soak in a tub with vitamin E added to the water.
3. Yogurt as a Snack
The live acidophilus in plain yogurt is great for keeping the good bacteria in your dog’s
intestines in balance. If your dog is on antibiotics a little bit of yogurt will also keep yeast infections at bay.
Finely ground oatmeal is a great remedy for irritated skin! You can use baby oatmeal cereal or grind it up yourself in a food processor. Stir the oatmeal into a warm bath and let your pup enjoy a nice relaxing bath.
5. White Vinegar
If your pooch is suffering from ear infections due to allergies, try cleaning her ears using a little bit of white vinegar.
6. Apple cider vinegar
If your dog’s skin has become so irritated that a hot spot has resulted, pour a little bit of apple cider vinegar into a clean spray bottle and directly apply to the affected areas.
Again, if you think your dog may be suffering from allergies, contact your vet right away to be on the safe side. Our pets are precious and I know we all want to make sure we take excellent care of them. Has your pet experienced allergies? What have you done? Feel free to comment below with tips and signs to look out for!