Allergy in Dogs: Types, Symptoms and Treatments

Alergia en Perros: Tipos, Síntomas y Tratamientos

Waggyfriend! This time we will explain everything you need to know about allergies in dogs, from common symptoms to the most effective treatment options. Allergies can profoundly affect the quality of life of our beloved furry companions, so it is essential to understand how to identify and manage these conditions effectively. We always recommend consulting with a veterinarian for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan. In addition, we will explain how Waggy's HEMP natural dog treats , formulated with natural ingredients such as hemp oil, CBD for dogs and Omega 3 for dogs can provide relief from disorders associated with allergies, thus improving the physical and emotional well-being of your pet. Let us begin!

Types of allergies in dogs

Allergies in dogs are common and can manifest in various ways, affecting your pet's skin, digestive system, and respiratory system. Some of the most common allergies are the following:

  • Food Allergies: Food allergies occur when a dog's immune system reacts to certain ingredients in its diet. Symptoms include itchy skin, recurrent ear infections, digestive problems such as vomiting and diarrhea in dogs , and, in some cases, hair loss. The most common ingredients that cause food allergies in dogs are beef, chicken, lamb, fish, dairy, wheat, soy, and corn.
  • Environmental Allergies: Environmental allergies, or atopy, are reactions to elements in the environment, such as pollen, mold, dust mites, and fungal spores. Dogs with these allergies often show symptoms such as itching, red skin, ear infections, and watery eyes. These symptoms may be seasonal, depending on the allergen.
  • Flea Allergies: Flea bite allergies in dogs are an allergic reaction to flea saliva. A single bite can cause intense itching and discomfort in the dog, leading to excessive scratching, hair loss, and skin lesions. This is one of the most common allergies and can be managed with proper flea control.
  • Contact Allergies: Contact allergies occur when a dog's skin reacts to specific substances it comes into contact with. This may include detergents, bedding materials, cleaning products, lawn chemicals, and certain plants. Symptoms are usually local and may include itching, redness, and rashes in areas that have come into contact with the allergen.
  • Drug allergies: Dogs can also be allergic to certain medications. Symptoms can range from rashes and itching to gastrointestinal problems or, in severe cases, anaphylactic reactions. It is important to inform your veterinarian of any adverse drug reactions to adjust treatment as necessary.
  • Inhalation Allergies: Similar to environmental allergies, inhalation allergies occur when dogs inhale allergens such as pollen, dust, and mold. Symptoms include sneezing, coughing, difficulty breathing, and a runny nose. These allergies can be difficult to manage, but treatments include medications and changes to the dog's environment.

What does allergy look like in dogs? Symptoms

  • Excessive Scratching (itching): Dogs with allergies tend to scratch constantly, especially in the areas of the paws, ears, face, armpits and abdomen. The itching can be intense and lead to skin lesions from persistent scratching.
  • Skin Inflammation and Redness: The skin of allergic dogs may appear inflamed, red and hot to the touch. The most affected areas are usually the ears, abdomen and paws.
  • Ear Infections: Allergies can cause recurring ear infections, which present with redness, bad odor, and discharge. Affected dogs may have an abnormal position of the head and/or shake it excessively in addition to frequent scratching of the ears.
  • Digestive Problems: In case of food allergies, dogs may experience vomiting, diarrhea and excessive gas. They may also show loss of appetite or changes in eating habits.
  • Watery and Runny Nase: Environmental allergies can cause watery, red, and runny eyes. Sneezing and clear nasal discharge may also occur.
  • Hair Loss and Bald Patches: Constant scratching and chewing can lead to hair loss in certain areas, leaving visible bald patches. Exposed skin may be irritated and crusty.
  • Rashes and Hives: Allergic contact reactions can cause rashes and hives, small red bumps on the skin. These rashes can be local and appear in areas of contact with the allergen.
  • Sores and Scabs on the Skin: Irritation and scratching can cause sores and scabs to appear on the skin. These wounds can become infected if not treated properly.
  • Cough and Shortness of Breath: Inhalation allergies can cause coughing, wheezing, and difficulty breathing. In severe cases, the dog may show signs of respiratory distress.
  • Facial Swelling: In severe allergic reactions, the dog may have swelling of the face, especially around the eyes and muzzle. This condition requires immediate veterinary attention.

Recognizing these symptoms early is crucial to managing allergies in dogs. If your dog shows any of these signs, especially if they are persistent or severe, it is important to consult a veterinarian. An accurate diagnosis and proper treatment plan can significantly improve your pet's quality of life and prevent serious complications.

If visits to the veterinarian cause stress for your pet, consider using Waggy's Olive Oil with HEMP, with prior approval from the veterinarian. Remember that the use of any HEMP product must be supervised by your pet's veterinarian. At Waggy's, we care about the health and well-being of your furry companion every step of the way.

Diagnosis of allergies in dogs

Diagnosing allergies in dogs is a process that requires a meticulous and systematic approach, beginning with a detailed medical history and complete physical examination by your veterinarian.

The first step in diagnosing allergies is a detailed medical history . The veterinarian will ask questions about the dog's symptoms, their duration, and the possible relationship to environmental factors, changes in diet, or the use of new products in the home. During the physical exam, the veterinarian will look for visible signs of allergies, such as rashes, hair loss, ear infections, and redness of the skin. This initial evaluation helps guide the next stages of diagnosis.

If food allergies are suspected, your veterinarian may recommend an elimination diet . This process involves feeding the dog a special hypoallergenic diet, which contains proteins and carbohydrates that the dog has not previously consumed. The diet is followed strictly for several weeks, observing whether symptoms improve. The usual ingredients are then reintroduced one at a time to identify which ones cause allergic reactions. This method is effective but requires patience and commitment on the part of the owner.

To diagnose environmental allergies, skin testing is a commonly used tool. In these tests, small amounts of potential allergens are injected or applied to the dog's skin, usually in the abdomen or flank area. If the dog is allergic to a substance, a small swelling or redness will develop at the injection site. Skin tests can identify specific allergens such as pollen, mold, dust mites, and other environmental irritants.

Another option for diagnosing allergies is blood tests , which measure the dog's immune response to certain allergens. These tests, known as serology tests, detect specific antibodies that the immune system produces in response to common allergens. Although blood tests may be less accurate than skin tests, they are useful in cases where skin tests are not feasible or in dogs with very sensitive skin.

For contact allergies, a patch test can be performed. In this procedure, a patch containing the suspected allergen is applied to the dog's skin and left on for a set amount of time. If the dog is allergic, he will develop a reaction at the application site. This test helps identify specific substances that cause allergic reactions when they come into contact with the dog's skin, such as certain detergents, cleaning products, or bedding materials.

What can you give a dog for allergies? Treatments

Treating allergies in dogs requires a comprehensive approach that may include dietary changes, medications, topical therapies, and environmental modifications. We explain more below:

  • Antihistamine Medications: Antihistamines are medications that block the action of histamine, a substance that the body releases during an allergic reaction. These medications can help reduce itching and redness of the skin. Remember not to medicate your pet without consulting your veterinarian.
  • Corticosteroids: Corticosteroids are powerful medications that reduce inflammation and depress the immune system. These are particularly effective in controlling severe allergy symptoms, but should be used under the supervision of a veterinarian due to their possible long-term side effects.
  • Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids: Fatty acid supplements, such as fish oils, can help improve skin and coat health and reduce inflammation associated with allergies. These supplements can be a beneficial addition to your dog's diet.

Do you already know Waggy's Salmon flavor Oil with HEMP? This premium product combines salmon oil, hemp oil and a powerful blend of omegas 3, 6 and 9 to offer extraordinary benefits to your pet. Salmon oil is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, while hemp oil provides a natural calming effect. Together, these ingredients not only help treat allergies and improve skin and coat health, but they also contribute to your dog's physical and emotional well-being, relieving stress and promoting a strong immune system.

  • Immunotherapy (Allergy Vaccines): Immunotherapy involves administering regular injections of small doses of the allergen to desensitize the dog's immune system. This treatment is personalized and may take several months or years, but it can offer significant, long-term relief from environmental allergies.
  • Hypoallergenic Diets: For dogs with food allergies, a hypoallergenic diet can be crucial. These darf diets typically contain novel or hydrolyzed proteins and carbohydrates that the dog's immune system does not recognize as allergens. Consult your veterinarian to determine the best diet for your dog.
  • Topical Products: Medicated shampoos and other topical products can help relieve itching and clear the skin of allergens. Look for products that contain ingredients like colloidal oatmeal and aloe vera among others that soothe inflamed skin. Regularly bathing your dog with these products can provide relief and reduce allergens on his skin and coat.
  • Antibiotics and Antifungals: If allergies have led to secondary skin infections, antibiotics or antifungals may be necessary. These infections can exacerbate allergic symptoms, so it is important to treat them appropriately. Remember that the use of antibiotics and medications must always be prescribed by the veterinarian.
  • Changes in the environment: Reducing exposure to environmental allergens can be a crucial part of treatment. This may include using air filters, frequently cleaning the home, regularly washing the dog's bedding, and avoiding areas with high levels of pollen or mold.

Home remedies for allergies in dogs

While it is essential to consult a veterinarian for the proper treatment of allergies in dogs, some home remedies can help relieve symptoms safely, remember that these do not replace the consultation or prescriptions of the veterinarian. Below we share some of the most common:

  • Colloidal oatmeal is known for its calming and anti-inflammatory properties. A bath with oatmeal can relieve itching and skin irritation.
  • Coconut oil has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties that may benefit dogs with allergies. You can apply a small amount of organic coconut oil directly to the affected areas of the skin, or add a teaspoon of coconut oil to your dog's food to improve the health of his skin and coat.
  • Pure aloe vera gel can help soothe and heal inflamed skin. Apply the gel directly to the affected areas, making sure it is 100% pure and without additives, as some commercial products may contain ingredients toxic to dogs.
  • Chamomile tea and green tea have anti-inflammatory properties and can be used as compresses to soothe irritated skin. Brew the tea, let it cool completely, and apply the wet tea bags or liquid with a cloth to the affected areas.
  • Baking soda can help relieve itching and clear the skin of allergens. Add a cup of baking soda to your dog's bath water and let it soak for 10 minutes. Be sure to rinse your dog well after bathing.

Tips to prevent allergies in dogs

  • Regular home cleaning can help reduce the amount of environmental allergens your dog is exposed to.
  • Vacuum carpets, furniture and curtains frequently to remove dust, mites and dander.
  • Wash your dog's bedding frequently in hot water to remove allergens.
  • Bathing and proper skin care can help remove allergens from your dog's skin and coat.
  • Brush your dog regularly to remove loose hair and allergens trapped in its coat.
  • Use deworming treatments regularly to keep your dog free of fleas and ticks. This should always be done under the supervision and prescription of the veterinarian.
  • Reduce the time your dog spends outdoors during pollen peaks.
  • Wipe your dog's paws and coat with a damp cloth after walks to remove pollen and other allergens.

Conclusion 

Allergies in dogs can be a challenge for both owners and pets. Identifying the symptoms, understanding the causes and applying preventative measures is crucial to improving your dog's quality of life. It is always advisable to consult with a veterinarian to obtain an accurate diagnosis and an appropriate treatment plan. Additionally, exploring additional options like Waggy's HEMP products can be beneficial. Made with natural ingredients, these products can help relieve the pain and inflammation associated with allergies, providing additional relief for your pet. Don't hesitate to ask your veterinarian about how Waggy's HEMP could complement your dog's allergy treatment.


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