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Does Your Dog Have Allergies?
Does Your Dog Have Allergies?-mob

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Dog Allergy Symptoms, Reaction and Remedies

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Is your dog always scratching, chewing, itching, or licking itself? Nibbling on its paws like they've been smeared with peanut butter? Although it may appear adorable at first, these are all indications that your dog is allergic. 

 

Dog allergies are very common, and they are one of the primary causes of veterinary visits. Usually, their skin and ears are the most affected areas. Just as they are for humans, environmental and seasonal allergies can cause some discomfort and be an issue for dogs. While allergies in people tend to improve, allergies in dogs often worsen with age. 

 

But how can you tell whether your dog is allergic to something and what's causing it? Unfortunately, correctly diagnosing these symptoms as dog allergies is not really simple. Your dog can't tell you what's wrong. So, it's up to you, the pet parent, to spot the signs. 

 

The human animal isn’t the only one affected by allergies. Like you, your adult dog can suffer from allergic reactions to any number of things—in the air, on his skin, and in his food. Allergies must be diagnosed and treated by your veterinarian, but first, you must know what to look for. Therefore, to relieve your furball from all the discomfort caused by allergies, here are some dog allergy symptoms you should watch out for:

 

  • Persistent scratching, licking, and skin chewing.
  • Face and ear rubbing.
  • Inflamed skin patches, hair loss, and foul odor.
  • Coughing, sneezing, watery eyes, and runny nose.
  • Frequent vomiting or diarrhea.


Types of dog allergies

Dogs are prone to multiple types of allergies, and each requires a unique treatment. Hence, learning about them will help you identify and manage them.

 

  • Environmental/seasonal allergy

Environmental allergens such as mold, dust, and pollen can cause severe allergies in dogs, also known as atopic dermatitis. They are triggered by elements found in your home or backyard, or wherever else your dog spends time. Dogs either ingest these allergens like pollen, or they get absorbed into their skin when they come into contact with them. Its ears and paws are the most affected regions; however, it can also affect the muzzle, wrists, ankles, eyes, underarms, crotch, and in between the toes.

  • Flea allergy

An allergic reaction caused by flea bites is one of the most common dog allergies. Plus, flea saliva is also thought to be an allergen in dogs, causing extreme itching. Your dog's skin may become inflamed, red, and scabbed as a result of this, especially near the base of the tail.
 

  • Food allergy

Itchy skin in dogs is caused by sensitivities and food allergies. Allergenic protein sources such as beef (34%), dairy products (17%), and chicken (15%) can cause severe food allergies. However, dogs tend to develop a food allergy at any time in their lives, regardless of whether they had previously consumed any type of food from any brands.
 

  • Inhalant allergy

Inhalant allergies in dogs are caused by the same common allergens that affect you—dust, grass, trees, mold, pollen, ragweed, etc. They can be seasonal or persistent and, while some breeds (especially short-snouted breeds) might experience the same sniffly, sneezy symptoms you might suffer, skin reactions are most common. Inhalant allergies often can be treated with the same medications you take, but please don’t treat your dog’s allergies without veterinary supervision.
 

Allergies can vary from dog to dog, so it is important that you work with your vet to make sure your dog gets the best possible treatment. You’ll both be happier for it.

 

 What are the most prevalent allergic reactions in dogs?

Now that you know the types of dog allergies, it’s time to understand the most common allergic reactions in them.

 

  • Increased scratching

Excessive itching affects the majority of dogs at some stage in their life. A dog with pruritus will bite, scratch, or lick its skin excessively. Itching is referred to as pruritus in medical terms and is one of the most common dog allergy symptoms. It is also a primary factor why dog owners seek veterinarian care.

 

  • Constant licking

If your dog licks its skin frequently or incessantly, especially its feet, it's a sign of allergies. The condition could be caused by irritants present in your home or while you go out for walks with your dog. However, it could also be a sign of your furball’s food allergies.

 

  • Feet chewing

Feet chewing is another prevalent dog allergic reaction. Your dog chews its feet because of an allergy to grass or other environmental pollutants like pollen or dust mites. Inflammation and irritation occur when an allergen comes in touch with its skin. As a result, the skin in the affected area becomes unbearable, and the dog begins to gnaw.

 

  • Itchy, red, moist skin

Your dog may have an allergy if you observe it itching a lot or if you notice redness on its skin. These allergic reactions are common in all sorts of dog allergies. If they are the only symptoms you're observing in your dog, you can wait a day or two before making an appointment with your vet.

 

How to avoid dog allergies?

It can take a little practice to figure out different ways to help alleviate your dog's allergy issues. One effective method is to frequently bathe your dog with hypoallergenic shampoos. This will help remove allergens such as grass or pollen from your dog's body. 

 

Flea control is also necessary to reduce allergy symptoms in a flea-allergic dog. Fleas must be inevitably treated in a dog's environment as well. Vacuum properly to eliminate the eggs and larvae, then discard the vacuum bag. Insecticides can be used both inside and outside your home to keep fleas at bay. In addition to that, hypoallergenic diets make for great dog allergy remedies. These diets contain fewer ingredients with a unique protein source, or they are processed in a specific way to reduce allergic reactions. Consult your vet for advice on the best diet for your pet. But remember that during the trial period, flavored drugs, treats, and human meals must be avoided.

 

Which breeds suffer the most from allergies?

Did you know? Certain dog breeds are more prone to allergic reactions. Yes. Hence, if you have one of these breeds, you must be extremely careful with it. 

 

  • American and English Bulldog

The English Bulldog is a short-haired breed that sheds moderately. Although it sheds hair all year, that isn’t the only allergy issue. These dogs drool a lot, and as the saliva dries and releases proteins into the air, it might induce an allergic reaction.

 

An activated immune system in American bulldogs can cause allergies. If your dog has signs like itchy skin, redness, or licking its paws, you know that your dog is allergic. 

 

  • Bichon Frise

The most prevalent dog allergies in a Bichon Frise are contact allergies that develop skin problems as well as food allergies. They are also allergic to flea bites and allergens in the air, such as flowers, grass, dust, and trees.

 

  • Boston Terrier

These dogs are also susceptible to contact allergies. They are allergic reactions to objects they come into contact with, including houseplants, cleaning detergents, and even some dog shampoos. Symptoms are more likely to be seen on the skin, so look for redness, flakiness, or a rash in the paws, belly folds, and ears.

 

  • Boxer

Keep an eye out for food allergies and environmental sensitivities that damage their skin. Boxers are especially sensitive to dog food that contains a lot of grains, such as wheat or corn. Allergies from pollen, trees, dust, and weeds can affect them at any time of year.

 

What are the most common dog allergens?

Like humans, dogs too have an allergic reaction to certain substances, ranging from food to environmental allergens. Let’s explore a few in brief:

 

  • Mold spores

Mold spores are everywhere around us. When inhaled by your dog, it can cause labored breathing, wheezing, and even coughing. Dog allergies are also triggered by eating or living in a moldy home. Excessive chewing, scratching, and dry or scaly skin are some of its common symptoms.

 

  • Dander

When your dog's oil glands overproduce an oil called sebum, dandruff develops. This oil helps moisturize your adorable pup's skin and adds to its overall wellness. But, when the sebaceous glands generate too much oil, an imbalance occurs, resulting in pet dander.

 

  • Fleas

When fleas feed on your dog, they inject their saliva into your dog’s skin. This saliva can cause an inflammatory reaction in your dog, causing it to excessively itch its skin. 

 

  • Dust mites

Dust mite allergies are caused by small spider-like insects that reside in houses and consume skin dander.

 

Is it possible to avoid dog allergens?

Unfortunately, dog allergies are incurable and unavoidable. However, you can do things to help them manage their symptoms and suffering. To begin, you must first determine the root reason, which could be flea-related, seasonal, food-related, or something else entirely. Then, you can help your dog avoid these allergies. Keep an eye out for itches and treat them immediately to avoid irritated, infected skin and ears.

 

If your furry friend exhibits any allergic symptoms, rush it to a veterinarian. Though most allergies are not life threatening, they can cause a lot of irritation, discomfort, and even pain to dogs. Moreover, if left untreated, such reactions can even develop into severe health issues. So, make sure you take your pooch to a vet immediately.


If you're looking for the perfect dog for you, try our Dog Breed Selector today and enjoy a lifetime of tail-wagging joy.

FAQ on does your dog have allergies.

  1. How can I help my dog with allergies?
  2. You can protect your dog from allergies by avoiding the allergens. Or else, you should regularly clean the air and other surfaces in your home. Additionally, bathing your dog with medicated shampoos for dogs with allergies can help alleviate the symptoms.

  3. What are the most common dog allergies?
  4. The most common dog allergies are:

    • Skin allergies
    • Food allergies
    • Flea allergies
    • Seasonal allergies

    Note: Seasonal allergies usually occur at a specific time of year, usually in the spring or fall.

     

  5. What are the remedies for dog allergies?
  6. Dog allergy remedies can be quite beneficial for their skin. Some of them include:

    • Providing vitamin E to moisturize your dog’s dry skin.

    • Giving curd to help maintain the balance of germs in your dog's intestines.
    • Giving a bath with oatmeal as it provides immediate relief from infections and skin allergies.



       

  7. How long does it take for dogs to recover from allergies?
  8. Allergies in dogs are almost always incurable. However, with the help of your veterinarian and a little patience, you can come up with a treatment and management plan that will keep your dog healthy and symptom-free.

     

Does Your Dog Have Allergies?
  • Choosing the Right Dog Food
    Choosing the Right Dog Food
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    Choosing the Right Dog Food

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    Author: Dr. Diah Pawitri
     

    When visiting the store, dog owners can get overwhelmed by the array of dog food options available, from dry kibble to canned wet food and more. These processed foods may not be appealing to humans, but they contain all the nutrients that dogs need to stay healthy. Like humans, dogs also need a variety of nutrients from their food, not just from meat as their main diet, but also from grains, vegetables, and fruits. This kind of balance is usually weighed by pet food labels in kibbles or wet food in grams for different types of dogs. 
     

    For optimum health, dogs need food that is tailored and customized to their life stages, starting from when they are puppies and all the way into adulthood. Puppies have completely different nutrient needs compared to adult dogs as they are still in their early stages of life. They need enough nutrients to fuel a speedy growth, especially after transitioning away from their mother's milk. Puppies require complete and balanced nutrition with protein to help build their tissues, fats or healthy skin, hair, brain, and vision, carbohydrates for energy, vitamins, minerals, and water.

    The need for balanced nutrients in puppies starts with the mother during pregnancy, followed by lactation and growth. Sufficient nourishment for the mother is pivotal in enhancing the puppies’ growth inside the womb and preparing them for life after birth. Both mother and puppy should receive well-proportioned antioxidants, DHA, and prebiotics to support their health and growth as provided by the IAMS product line, which contains DHA that is essential for puppies' brain development while also supporting the mother's pregnancy and quality of milk produced. 
     

    While puppies need the primary nutrients for growth, adult dog food has a different level of complexity. Adult dog food requires the same make-up of nutrients as puppies do but tailored to their specific needs. Recent research indicates that an adult dog requires at least 10% of its daily calories from protein and at least 5.5% from fat. Adult dogs need quality protein for firm muscles and a healthy immune system. Additionally, an adult diet can contain up to 50% carbohydrates, with fiber ranging from 2.5 to 4.5%. There is no specific prescribed amount of fibre for adult dog consumption daily, however, it is still one of the most important components in dog food to address constipation and support a healthy weight.
     

    Adult dogs in their prime also require a balance in antioxidants to reduce systemic inflammation and restore active muscles. They should receive Vitamin E and C to support their immune system, joint health, and prevent inflammation. As they grow older, they may be exposed to different diseases from diabetes to cancers, which can be prevented by polyphenols.  Parents to adult dogs must acknowledge the most suitable food for their loved one that is comprised of the right amount of nutrients and can look to the IAMS line as they are formulated to support healthy bones and joint health, scientifically proven for healthy digestion with a good fibre and prebiotic blend, as well as antioxidants for a strong immune system.
     

    Besides life stage, balanced nutrition should be adjusted to their breed, which give insight to different factors like weight, mouth size, and energy level. This will then determine the type of kibble and food given. Smaller breeds tend to be more active, requiring the same essential nutrients and prebiotics for a healthy body as well as smaller-sized kibble designed specifically for their smaller mouths. As smaller dogs relatively have a high metabolism, higher levels of protein, fat, and essential fatty acids like omega 3 and omega 6 are some of the important nutrients that should be available in their food. On the other hand, larger breeds require foods that are lower in fat and calories, contain slightly lower levels of calcium and phosphorus, and have a specific balance of calcium-to-phosphorus ratio to support stronger bones and muscles.  Owners can look to products like the small breed line from IAMS, containing 7 essential nutrients to build strong muscles, support their tiny immune system while protecting their healthy skin and coat, and the product line for adults for large breeds.
     

    Dog parents must acknowledge and understand the unique needs, life stage and characteristics in their dog to choose the right dog food so their furry ones can grow into their healthiest selves. Make sure to visit your vet regularly to check these components as well!