Do Pets Get Allergies?

Do Pets Get Allergies?

Golden retriever in the grassHave you ever wondered, “Do pets get allergies?”

Well, they do. Like us, pets are prone to seasonal allergies. Luckily, helping your pet through allergy season, be it spring or fall,  is not difficult if you are prepared with the knowledge of what to look for and what to do.

What is Your Pet Allergic To?

Typically, pet allergies fall into two distinct categories: food allergies and environmental allergies. Environmental allergies can be both seasonal and year-round, depending on what your pet is allergic to, and how prevalent the allergen is in your pet’s environment.

Pets can be allergic to many of the same things that affect us, including:

  • Grass
  • Pollen
  • Dust—especially dust that is kicked up from harvest season
  • Air pollution
  • Food Allergies
  • Thankfully, knowing what your pet is allergic to is as simple as a bringing him or her in for a diagnostic allergy screening.

    Signs Your Pet May Have Allergies

    For many pet owners, recognizing your pet’s signs, symptoms, and behaviors to be allergy related is not always simple. While an allergy suffering-pet may have red, watery eyes and some sneezing, those are not the common symptoms of pet allergies.

    Signs your pet may be suffering from allergies include:

  • Chewing at the feet
  • Constant licking of the flank (side) and groin area
  • Rubbing of the face
  • Inflamed ears or recurrent ear infections
  • Recurrent hotspots in dogs and pinpoint facial scabbing in cats
  • Asthma-like wheezing and respiratory problems (more likely in cats)
  • If you see your pet exhibiting any of these behaviors, he or she is likely suffering from allergies and should be seen for a diagnostic screening and therapy plan.

    How to Help Your Pet

    Never give your pet over-the-counter allergy medications or treatments without first consulting with your vet and knowing that is safe. Talking with your veterinarian about how to best treat your pet’s allergies is a must.

     Many over-the-counter allergy medications can contain ingredients that are not pet-friendly, and knowing what is safe and what is not can be a matter of life and death.

    A pharmaceutical that we recommend for many of our patients is Novartis Animal Health’s Atopica,  a dermatitis medication available to treat both cats and dogs.

    Aside from pharmaceutical allergy treatments, there are some common sense approaches you can take to reduce your pet’s symptoms and suffering. Once you know what is affecting your pet you can do your best to keep your pet’s environment free of those allergens.

    A thorough dusting and cleaning of your home can go a long way in helping your pet. Likewise, bathing your pet with a grain-free (oatmeal-free) shampoo, and giving your pet regular foot soaks to remove any allergens he or she may be tracking into your home or scratching into his or her coat can help as well.

    If you suspect that your pet is suffering from fall or other environmental allergies, please call us for an appointment. We can help you and your pet know what allergens are causing your pet’s symptoms and advise you on getting him or her through allergy season.


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    Schertz Animal Hospital

    Since 1976, Schertz Animal Hospital has offered the greater San Antonio area outstanding pet care. Our state-of-the-art animal hospital in Schertz, TX compliments our stress-free handling and experienced veterinary staff. Make an appointment online or give us a call at (210) 659-0345 today!