Pets Affected By Seasonal Allergies – Symptoms and Treatment

Yes, that’s right. Even your furry friends can get allergies too. Dogs, cats, and even horses are among the pets affected by seasonal allergies. This is not the same as food allergies but can cause similar symptoms that need to be addressed. The good news is that there is help available. If you suspect your pet is experiencing seasonal allergy symptoms, read on. We can work together toward a solution.

Red Flags That Your Pet Has Seasonal Allergies

Pet’s don’t typically get the same kinds of allergic reactions to allergens as people do. Rather than the sniffling, sneezing, and watery-eyed coughing you experience during an extra-pollinated spring morning , your pet will usually experience something called allergic dermatitis. This is not to say that these other symptoms don’t arise, they do, so keep an eye out for all of the above.

Allergic dermatitis is a condition that causes skin irritation and inflammation. This is an extremely irritating experience for pets, and they will often be found itching, scratching, and even biting at their irritated skin trying to relieve the incessant itch. Over time, this itching causes red, inflamed skin, hair loss, bleeding, open sores, and bacterial infections.

There are also often ear problems that arise as well, especially in dogs. If allergies are causing a systemic itch, ears can be an easy target for the itching. This can cause more problems if a yeast or bacterial infection opportunistically takes up residence in the raw, irritated skin. This is paired with extra head shaking, pawing, scratching, and more hair loss around the ears. There can also be a discharge and a foul odor as well.

How Can I Help My Seasonal Allergy-Suffering Pet?

If you have an environmentally sensitive pet, exposure to the outdoors during especially triggering months is where most of the allergens are found. It’s not usually possible for most pet parents to restrict their pet from outdoor exposure during the entire season. Because of this, there needs to be a better plan in place to accommodate for this challenge.

The same advice your dermatologist might give you during allergy season (for your own allergies) is similar to the advice needed for your pet as well. Here are a few ways to help your pet with seasonal allergy symptoms:

  • Foot soaking – If your pet is dragging in allergens everytime she enters the house, soaking her feet in a foot bath as she enters can play a big role in keeping offending particles out of the home.

  • Regular bathing – Letting your pet soak in a bath provides immediate relief to the annoying itchiness they are experiencing. Using an allergen-free shampoo will help wash away any offending particulates and offer some relief.

  • Keep a clean home – If you can keep your home as allergen-free as possible (especially where your pet often frequents), you will help lower the allergen load. Regular vacuuming and mopping, as well as clean pet bedding, help create an allergen-free area. Don’t use bleach though. Opt, rather, for non-toxic cleaning agents and detergents.

  • Maintain normal immune function – Allergies are an immune response to a foreign invader. You don’t want to introduce anything to your pet that may increase this response as it can inflame the condition even more.

  • Try an anti-inflammatory diet – Foods that increase inflammation are typically always high in low-quality carbohydrates, like grains. If you have an allergic pet, opt for a low-carb diet.

  • Supplements – There are a few supplements that can support your anti-inflammatory diet. Quercetin, bromelain and papain, omega-3 fatty acids, and coconut oil are all great examples.

  • Get leaky-gut support – dysbiosis (aka leaky gut) is shown to be at the root of many immune system overreactions. If you can address this issue, you may find relief over time.

  • Veterinary support – When your pet has allergies, it’s always a good idea to make sure you get professional veterinary support. There are many things that your vet can provide to help relieve irritating allergic reactions quickly and effectively.

Final Thoughts

With so many pets affected by seasonal allergies every year, it’s important to prepare yourself. With a bit of forward thinking, you can help to make sure your allergic pet can get all the care, support, and relief they need. If you suspect your pet has seasonal allergies, please bring them in for an allergy test. We can help to make sure you get exactly the right treatment options for your pet’s needs. Contact an experience veterinarian today by calling Bayview Pet Medical and Dental Center 228-872-4424 .