Spring time is almost here! And that means the outdoors will start to come alive again with blossoming flowers and trees and pollen circulating in the air. Unfortunately, with all of the beautiful foliage comes allergies – yuck! Sneezing, coughing and watery eyes are no fun. But, have you ever stopped to think whether or not your DOG gets spring time allergies too? Today we’re going to provide you with everything you need to know about dogs and allergy season.
Yes – Dogs CAN Get Allergies
Dogs are really not so different than humans in this regard. Dogs can absolutely get allergies, which occurs when their immune systems start to think that natural substances are harmful to their bodies. These substances are not harmful, but your dog may have a reaction to them when ingested, inhaled, or when they come in contact with the skin.
How Do I Know If My Dog Has Allergies?
There are many tell-tale signs of an allergic reaction in dogs. Here’s some of the most common ones to watch out for:
- Itchy, red skin/eyes/back/base of tail/ears
- Constant licking
- Paw chewing
- Ear Infections
Any of these symptoms MAY indicate that your dog is having an allergic reaction. If your dog is showing any of these symptoms, make sure you contact your veterinarian to discuss your options.
What Can Dogs Be Allergic To?
Dogs (and people) can have allergic reactions to almost anything. But, there are a number of substances that are identified as the “most common” allergens. Here’s a list of the most common allergens for dogs.
- Trees, grass, pollen, & weeds
- Cigarette Smoke
- Perfumes & Shampoos
- Cleaning Products
- Food ingredients such as beef/pork/chicken/wheat/soy/corn
If you’re finding that your dog may be allergic to their food, the tough part is determining what exact ingredient is causing the reaction. Food allergies in dogs can show up any time from puppies to elderly dogs. You may have to experiment a little by feeding them different things to try to narrow down what the ingredient is. If you’re having trouble figuring out where to start, be sure to contact your veterinarian for help.
How Can I Help My Dog’s Allergies?
There’s a number of different allergy treatments that you can use, depending on what your dog is allergic to. Step number one is to visit your veterinarian to get a better sense of what your dog is allergic to and what the best treatment methods are.
For example, if your dog is allergic to plants or trees, frequent bathing may help to relieve them. Trying to be conscious of dust around the house by cleaning more frequently may help a dog a with dust allergies. Dogs with food allergies can be placed on special prescription diets by your veterinarian to help to determine what the allergen is and what food they should eat from now on.
Overall, it’s important to provide your dog with the best care by consulting with the professionals. While the Internet definitely provides a lot of helpful resources, the best way to get the facts on dog allergies is to chat with your veterinarian. They are here to look out for you and your dog – so don’t be afraid to take advantage of them. They are the best resource!