Does My Dog Have an Allergy? How To Spot and Treat Them

Allergies can cause painful or uncomfortable symptoms for people that suffer from them ­ and it’s no different for dogs. The issue is that they can’t speak up about them, so owners need to be aware of the signs and symptoms to be able to help their dogs if necessary.

In this article, we’ll discuss some of the most common dog allergies and touch on how you should go about spotting and treating them to give your furry friends some relief!

What are some common dog allergies?

Dogs can suffer from many of the same kinds of allergies that humans do. They can be categorised into three broad types, skin, food and environmental. However, it can be complicated to identify specific problems because many of the causes and symptoms overlap.

Skin allergies can result in conditions such as dermatitis, where a dog’s skin is inflamed, itchy and very uncomfortable. This can be caused by flea bites or certain foods, chemicals and environmental allergens.

Food allergies can also cause dermatitis and various skin conditions and swelling, but they’re more likely to disrupt a dog’s digestive system. Proteins including meat, dairy products and eggs are some of the more common allergens and can cause vomiting and diarrhoea. Of course, there are foods like chocolate that you’re warned not to give dogs because they can be incredibly harmful.

Environmental allergens impact canines less commonly but things like pollen can cause respiratory complications, while harvest mites and fleas can cause painful skin irritation, as mentioned earlier.

What symptoms should I look out for?

There are a few common symptoms you should be looking out for, although not every one may be caused by an allergen per se. These are the following:

  • Red, irritated, or inflamed skin
  • Excessive scratching and licking
  • Swelling (particularly around the face, ears, lips and eyes)
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Sneezing
  • Wheezing and struggling for breath

How do I treat a dog allergy?

If your dog is displaying any of the symptoms above then it’s always recommended that you seek the help and advice of a registered vet.

They should be able to run tests to determine the cause of the allergic reaction if you aren’t sure. Typical approaches include intradermal skin testing and blood samples. One of the main methods of detecting food allergies is to carry out a diet trial where food types are removed and then slowly reintroduced to find out which is most likely causing the reaction.

There are ways to manage any kind of allergy, whether that be sensitive dog food or medicated shampoos and creams. Work closely with your vet to find the best solutions to provide some relief for your beloved dog.

Identifying allergies as quickly as possible is key to ensuring that your dog isn’t suffering for too long. Keep an eye out for any of the listed symptoms and seek the advice of your vet if you want any guidance.

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