Monday 22 October 2007

Treatment of Dog Allergies

Is your dog always scratching his skin, causing blisters and sores to form all over his body? Then your dog might just have an allergy.

Symptom Relief

Allergies in dogs present as uncontrollable itching, forcing the dog to lick and scratch himself until sores develop on his body. These sores could become infected, accumulate pus and become very painful. With recurrent attacks, some dogs eventually end up with their hair falling out.

One of the most effective ways to manage your dog’s allergy symptoms is to give him regular baths with cool water. Using shampoos that contain eucalyptus and aloe vera can help relieve the itching that your dog experiences until the skin heals. Diets rich in vitamins, minerals and fatty acids also aid in keeping your dog’s skin healthy.

A number of medications can also help relieve the symptoms of allergies. These include antihistamines, such as diphenhydramine, and steroids, such as prednisone. If your dog develops an infection, antibiotics may be given. Keep in mind that continued use of these medications can result in serious side effects, such as liver problems and a weakened immune system. Thus, it is best to consult a veterinarian about the proper dosages prior to administering these medications.

Immunotherapy in animals has also become more popular in recent years. Your dog is given shots to prevent the development of allergies. Remember that these shots may take anywhere from several months to a year to work, and can cost a huge amount of money.

Specific Treatment

There are several kinds of dog allergies, and the treatment for each kind varies significantly.

Some component of the air around us, such as pollen, mold spores or household dust, could cause allergies to your dog. This is known as inhalant allergy. Frequently dusting and vacuuming the areas where your dog usually stays helps a lot.

Flea infestation is one of the biggest problems experienced by dogs. What’s even worse is that some dogs are allergic to the saliva that fleas produce. The treatment for flea allergies is to control, and if possible, eliminate the fleas. Regular grooming and brushing of your dog’s hair is quite helpful. You can also use any of the numerous anti-flea products that abound in the market, such as flea shampoos, foggers, sprays and medications containing pyrethrin.

Another common type of allergy that dogs experience is allergy to certain components of dog food. An effective way to manage food allergies is to change the dog’s diet to a hypoallergenic one. Then gradually introduce a certain kind of food one at a time, waiting approximately a few days to a week to observe if the dog reacts to it. Once you have determined what components cause the allergies, you can permanently remove it from your dog’s diet.


Still, the most effective way to manage dog allergies is to prevent them. No matter what kind of allergy your dog has, avoiding the allergen that triggers the disease minimizes the symptoms experienced by your pet, and keeps your pet healthy and allergy-free.