Yes, your pet may have seasonal allergies!
It is May, and the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) has declared May to be the awareness month for asthma and allergies in humans. But what about our pets? Pets suffer from allergies too! Your awareness about allergies in pets may be an important piece of your pet’s health and could save your pet’s life.
Allergies are Common in Pets
Allergies in pets stem from the same immune response that causes allergies in humans, and pets who spend a fair amount of time outside can suffer the effects of environmental or seasonal allergies. And they may need a little help from us getting through the spring season without chewing their fur off or making their family miserable!
Common Pet Allergies Include:
- Flea and parasite-induced allergies
- Dust, mold, and pollen
- Cigarette smoke
- Allergic reactions to medications
- Household chemical allergies, such as plastic, shampoos, and cleaning products
Symptoms of Allergies in Pets:
- Excessive itching, sneezing, and grooming (in cats)
- Sneezing and watery eyes
- Paw chewing
- Skin inflammation
- Ear infection
Treating Your Pets for Allergies
Allergy Testing and Treatment
Allergy testing in pets shares similarities to allergy testing in humans. For food allergies, pet owners will need to identify the specific allergen through a strict elimination diet. Environmental allergies can be determined by one of our veterinarians through blood samples or intradermal skin tests. Although there is no cure for allergies, avoiding triggers and making simple lifestyle changes can alleviate symptoms. In cases of severe allergies, medications or cortisone shots may be prescribed by us.
If your pet is exhibiting any of these symptoms or if you suspect your pet is suffering from seasonal allergies, please call us to schedule an appointment. Together we can tackle your pet’s symptoms and can decide whether you need to address the issue head on, with an oral or topical medication, or if a dietary or lifestyle change can clear things up. Make sure to take action quickly, as ignoring the signs and symptoms of allergies can lead to more acute problems in the future and can be making your pet–and family–miserable.