Is your pet scratching, licking, or sneezing more frequently than usual? Dogs and cats can experience seasonal allergies, just like humans. Trees, grasses, and weeds release pollen, especially when the seasons change, which makes pets’ immune systems respond and usually results in allergy-like symptoms.
It’s very uncommon for pet owners to think that their pet’s food may be causing an allergic reaction when they notice their dog or cat suffering from scratchy skin or other typical allergy symptoms. However, according to veterinary studies, food allergies in dogs and cats are uncommon. For instance, about 1% of all skin conditions in dogs have a confirmed food allergy. Environmental causes are more frequently to blame for these symptoms.
What are symptoms of seasonal allergies in pets?
Pets that suffer from seasonal allergies are typically allergic to weeds that pollinate that time of year, including ragweed. These allergies in pets typically take the form of skin irritation rather than respiratory issues, which may come as a relief to pet owners. However, itchy skin can lead to extreme scratching, licking, or chewing, which can cause hair loss or sores for pets. Another common symptom is itchy ears and reoccurring ear infectionsi.
Most dogs will start to show symptoms of fall allergies between one and three years of ageii. Seasonal allergy symptoms can be controlled with the help of a veterinarian, but unfortunately, rarely are these allergies curable.
How to treat seasonal allergies in pets
Taking your dog or cat to the vet is the first step in detecting and treating seasonal allergies in pets. The severity of the seasonal allergies will be determined by a veterinary evaluation, along with the best course of therapy. It’s crucial to handle allergies as soon as symptoms appear because they can occasionally get worse as a pet ages.
In order to pinpoint specific allergy triggers, veterinarians can also screen pets for allergies. Specialized shampoos, antihistamines, and in more severe situations, steroids or allergy shots, can all be used as supplemental therapies during allergy season to address some allergy symptoms.
Simple measures can make a big difference in treating your pet’s allergy issues. Consider the following if your dog or cat suffers from seasonal allergies:
- After spending time outdoors, wipe your pet off with a damp cloth to remove the pollen from his or her face and body
- Frequently bathe your pet with a mild shampoo
- Keep your home extra clean as the seasons change, remembering to dust and vacuum regularly
- Make sure to feed a complete and balanced pet food to support your pet’s overall well-being
Nobody who owns a dog enjoys seeing their animal suffer. Seasonal allergies, however, affect more than just our skin. They can even penetrate the skin of our canines! Additionally, much like people, dogs can become allergic to seasonal allergens including dust mites, mold, and mildew.
Through the skin, these allergens get into the dog’s body. As a result, while our dogs scratch more frequently, our humans experience greater upper respiratory allergy problems.
There are numerous therapies available, but there is no known cure for seasonal allergies. Additionally, there is a larger likelihood of controlling the symptoms the earlier the issue is handled. Make an appointment with your veterinarian if you believe your dog may have seasonal allergies so you can go over the different options for treatment.