Allergy season is upon us, and we can’t forget that our pets develop allergies, too. Pets can develop seasonal allergies towards plants, dust, dander, and more. If untreated, allergies can leave your pet in severe discomfort and pain. Let’s learn about what pets are most commonly allergic to, symptoms of various seasonal allergies, and how to treat these allergies to leave your pets feeling happy and healthy!
Just like humans, our pets can develop allergies when their immune system identifies something such as pollen, dust or food as harmful. When this happens, the body may stimulate the release of chemicals to alert to the sensitivity and this can lead to allergy symptoms.
Dogs can develop seasonal allergies throughout their lifetime, and terriers, retrievers, setters, and brachycephalic breeds such pugs, bulldogs, and Boston terriers are more likely to experience common allergies. Cats can also develop allergies and tend to have severe reactions when exposed to whatever their body is identifying as dangerous. If your cat spends time outdoors, they may be more susceptible to pollen and flea allergies.
What can cause your dog or cat to experience allergic reactions? Here is a list of some common allergens:
Pet Allergy Symptoms
Dogs and cats have similar symptoms of allergies. If you notice your pet has any of these particular symptoms, they might be experiencing an allergic reaction.
Treating Your Pet's Allergies
See Your Veterinarian
If you think your pet has allergies, it’s important to make an appointment before their symptoms worsen. At Grand Valley Animal Hospital, our veterinarians will determine if your pet should be prescribed a medication and recommend an allergy-screening panel – this helps determine which items in or near your home are causing your pet’s allergies.
Additionally, if you believe your pet is having an allergic reaction to a prescription drug or an over-the-counter medication, make an appointment to consult with your veterinarian.
What You Can Do at Home to Treat Pet Allergies
There are effective ways to help treat your pet’s allergies at home, including:
- Clean Pet Bedding Often – If your pet has a dust allergy, cleaning their bedding once a week and vacuuming at least twice a week should help their symptoms.
- Weekly Baths – Bathing your pet weekly will also help relieve itching and remove environmental allergens from their skin. However, it’s very important that you use a shampoo formulated to your pet’s species [cats, dogs, ferrets, etc.]; you can find shampoo that will work to eliminate itching on our online store.
- Flea Medication – To help prevent allergy symptoms caused by fleas, start your dog on one of the medications we recommend, which can be found in our online store or at our clinic.