Dogs who may be affected by allergies, may suffer their entire lives without their owner even knowing about it. These allergy symptoms typically worsen as they get older. We can help relieve some of the dog allergies by knowing the signs and finding the right type of solutions to relief for these symptoms. Below is a list of most common dog allergies:
Flea Allergy Dermatitis (FAD)
Flea allergy dermatitis, which is actually sensitivity to flea saliva, is a very common condition in dogs. It's not the bite of the flea that causes most of the itching in dogs with FAD, it's the saliva.
Lots of dog parents assume if their pet isn't infested with fleas, the itching can't be caused by fleas. But if your dog has FAD, the saliva of just one or two fleas can make him miserably itchy and uncomfortable for many weeks (long past the death of those two fleas).
Suggestions for flea control:
- If you suspect or know fleas are a problem for your dog, I recommend you comb her at least once daily, every day during pest season with a flea comb. Do this on a white towel or other light colored cloth so you can see what's coming off your dog as you comb. Flea 'dirt' (actually flea feces) looks like real dirt, but when suspended in a little rubbing alcohol or water will dissolve and release a red color (blood) allowing you to discern real dirt from flea dirt.
- Bathe your dog often. A soothing bath will kill any fleas on your dog, help heal skin irritation, and make her feel more comfortable and less itchy. Also, clean animals aren't as attractive to fleas.
If your dog has an allergy to something he's eating, it may show itself not only as digestive upset (gas, diarrhea, vomiting, etc.), but also as one or several of these symptoms:
- Itchy or oozing skin
- Red, irritated eyes
- Nasal discharge
- Coughing or sneezing; asthma
- Inflamed ears
- Swollen paws
Steps To Take
If you suspect your dog is sensitive to allergies, there are a number of things you can do to learn the source of the allergy and solve the problem. Here are some of the steps to take:
Consider using a saliva test to determine if your dog is allergic to food such as beef,wheat, soy corn, eggs and/or milk products.
If your dog has been on the same diet and eating the same food every day for months, there may be a good chance they developed an allergy to it. Your dogs need diversity in their diets - just like humans do in their daily diets.
Work with your local vet to develop an allergy elimination diet plan to help pinpoint the source of the problem. We recommend a two to three diet. Give enough time for your dog to clear the allergens, detoxify and clean out all of the debris.
Once your dog is at the end of the elimination diet, introduce new foods slowly, to test your dog's response. Your may also try a raw food diet for your dog which has a log benefits.
Your holistic vet should also suggest natural supplements to help with detoxification, allergy relief and immune system support during and after the elimination diet.
For your dog to be healthy and avoiding food sensitivities and building resistance to all types of allergies, your dog should be fed a balanced and appropriate diet. The diet we recommend here at Maximum K9 Service is either raw, or homemade food.
In addition to fleas and certain foods, your dog can also be allergic to an infinite variety of irritants in the environment. These can be outdoor allergens like ragweed, grasses and pollens, as well as mold, dust mites and household cleaning chemicals.
As a general rule, if your dog is allergic to something inside your home, he'll have year-round symptoms. If he's reacting is to something outdoors, it could very well be a seasonal problem.
Also, your pet's immune system is partly genetic, so he can actually inherit a tendency toward environmental allergies.
Finding the root cause of this type of allergy is extremely important, because what usually happens is the more your pet is exposed to an irritant, the more his sensitivity and reaction to it grows.
Some suggestions for finding and resolving environmental irritants:
- Clean up your pet's indoor air environment and where they like to lay and play around. Do not smoke cigarettes around your dog. Switch to natural and non-toxic cleaning products. Think about purchasing an air purifier to control dust mites and other air allergens.
- Make sure your dog's drinking water is high quality and doesn't contain fluoride, heavy metals or other contaminants.
- Wash and bathe your dog to make sure they are clean. If your pet has irritated skin, bathing will rinse the allergens away and make her feel better immediately.