Have you noticed your pet itching or scratching non-stop? Perhaps they chew on their feet, or keep biting at their fur. Their excessive scratching may make them uncomfortable and even unable to sleep well at night. If your pet seems particularly itchy lately, it may be a sign that your pet is suffering from allergies.

Unfortunately, there is no surefire cure for how to treat allergies in pets. The best we can do is to identify and manage the symptoms early on.

Excessive scratching is one of the most common signs of allergies in pets. Aside from itching and scratching, here are other symptoms of allergies in pets: 

  • Hair loss
  • Hives
  • Swelling of the face, ears, lips, eyelids, or earflaps
  • Red, inflamed skin
  • Chronic ear or skin infections
  • Itchy, runny eyes
  • Redness and scratching of their belly, armpits or groin regions
  • Chewing or licking their feet
  • Chewing or biting at their tail
  • Rubbing or shaking their ears
  • Rubbing or scratching their face

 

Allergies in dogs and cats are caused by your pet’s immune system overreacting to a foreign substance. There are four main types of allergies in pets:

 

1. Flea Allergy

This is the most common cause of pet allergies, and usually the easiest to identify and diagnose. Some pets may be allergic to flea saliva. This causes severe itching, skin irritations, hot spots, and hair loss where there are flea bites. The bites may become red and inflamed, and your pet may make it worse if they keep on biting or scratching at the bite site. You’ll also see the presence of fleas, flea eggs or flea feces together with these symptoms.

Protecting your pet against fleas is one of the most effective ways to prevent skin allergies and hot spots. Bathe your pet with an all-natural anti-flea and tick shampoo to help prevent these nasty pests from bothering your pet. Use all-natural anti-flea and tick sprays in between baths to help keep them at bay.

 

2. Food Allergy

Food allergies are caused by the immune system’s hypersensitivity to a protein in a food. Food allergies in pets can develop at any age, even to something your pet has already been eating for years. Pets usually develop allergies to beef, dairy, wheat, fish, pollens, eggs, yeast, chicken, pork, lamb, corn, soybeans, and rice.

Symptoms of food allergies include rash, hives, itching on the face, limbs, groin and anal region. Gastrointestinal problems, diarrhea, and vomiting may occur too. Food allergy is different from food intolerance, which result only in gastrointestinal symptoms/problems.

Food allergies are best diagnosed by working with your veterinarian. They will recommend a limited, hypoallergenic, elimination diet to help find out which specific protein ingredient is causing an allergic reaction for your pet. This will usually go on for two to three months. Suspected foods or ingredients will be gradually reintroduced while you monitor your pet closely, looking out for any signs of returning of allergic symptoms.

 

3. Environmental Allergy

Environmental allergies are also called seasonal allergies since you may only notice your pet itching during certain times of the year. This type of allergy is caused by dust, mold, and pollen. Similar to food allergies, the commonly affected areas are the paws and ears.

 

4. Allergic Contact Dermatitis

Allergic contact dermatitis is caused by certain chemicals that come into contact with your pet’s skin. Some pets may have reactions to chemicals that can be found in detergents, soaps, shampoos, insecticides, carpets, paint, rubber, and plastic.

Common symptoms are redness, irritation, hair loss, sores, scabbing, and hotspots on or around the affected area.

The best way to avoid allergic contact dermatitis is to use all-natural and chemical-free shampoos for your pet.

 

How To Treat Allergies in Cats and Dogs

Preventing exposure to allergens is the key to managing your pet’s allergies. Unfortunately, it is near impossible to fully protect your pet from any or all allergens. It is however, possible to help treat their allergies, depending on the type or allergy your pet has.

For immediate itch relief and to help sooth skin conditions, apply Wondercide Skin Tonic Spray. This fast-acting relief is ideal for irritations caused by allergies, bug bites, hot spots, dry and itchy skin, burns, rashes and more.

If you suspect your pet has an allergy the best thing to do is consult your veterinarian. In addition to any lifestyle changes that may be necessary, your veterinarian may also prescribe tests to help identify the specific causes of their allergies, or any medication that will help control or alleviate any allergic reactions.

 

Sources:

http://veterinarymedicine.dvm360.com/

https://vetnutrition.tufts.edu/

http://www.vetstreet.com/

https://www.akc.org/

https://www.petfinder.com/