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Seasonal Allergies Can Make Your Pet Miserable

cat flower allergies

Symptoms of Seasonal Allergies in Pets

Itching

Seasonal allergies can cause a constant, intense itch. If your dog or cat cannot seem to stop scratching, allergies may be the reason. Itching can occur around the eyes, mouth, feet, armpit, abdomen, thighs, and anus. In addition to scratching, your pet may also drag its face or body across carpeting or other rough surfaces in an attempt to gain some relief from the itching.

Biting and Licking

Your pet will do anything to try to reduce itching, including biting and licking the skin. Unfortunately, biting, licking and scratching can result in hair loss, open sores and scabs. Sores can become infected, which can make your pet even more uncomfortable.

Frequent Ear Infections

Seasonal allergies can cause ear infections. Symptoms of ear infections in cats and dogs include scratching, redness, discharge, odor, excessive ear wax, and crusts or scabs.

Winter is quickly becoming a distant memory as the days warm up and plants and trees come into bloom. Unfortunately, the change in seasons can cause unpleasant symptoms for pets that suffer from seasonal allergies. Because dogs and cats do not experience the same allergy symptoms as people, you might not even be aware that your pet has allergies.

How Do Seasonal Allergies Affect Dogs and Cats?

If you have seasonal allergies, you are very familiar with the symptoms of the condition. Sneezing, red eyes, a runny nose or nasal congestion can make you feel awful, but your pet experiences different symptoms when seasonal allergies flare up. Allergies are more likely to affect your pet's skin. If your dog or cat frequently licks or scratches its skin when spring arrives, allergies to pollen, grasses or molds may be to blame.

How Can I Help My Pet Manage Seasonal Allergies?

There are a few things you can do to make allergy season more bearable for your pet, such as:

  • Bathe your pet frequently. Washing your dog at least once every week removes allergens that can get caught in hair and fur. Your cat can benefit from a bath, too. Hypoallergenic shampoos are best. Oatmeal-based products can help reduce itching and soothe skin. If your feline friend has a strong dislike of water, as many cats do, remove allergens by running a damp cloth over its body.
  • Wipe your pet's paws. Pollen can become stuck to the bottoms of your pet's feet. When your dog or cat returns inside, remove the pollen with a soft cloth. Pollen can also stick to the bottoms of your shoes. Your pet will not only benefit if you remove your shoes when you enter your house, but you will too if you have seasonal allergies.
  • Give your furry friend Omega-3 fatty acid supplements. The supplements can help keep your pet's skin healthy and reduce the effects of seasonal allergies.
  • Bring your pet indoors before you mow: Whether your pet is allergic to grasses or pollen, keeping your friend indoors while you mow will help decrease exposure to allergens.
  • Pay attention to the allergy forecast. Online weather sites, such as Weather.com, feature allergy forecasts that let you know when pollen or mold levels are high in your area. If levels rise, keep your pet inside as much as possible until the levels begin to drop.
  • Use the air-conditioner. Pollen is so small that it can drift through the holes in window and door screens. Air-conditioner filters catch the pollen and prevent it from settling on surfaces in your home.

Can My Pet Take Allergy Medications?

Allergy medications can reduce your pet's symptoms, but it's important to check with a veterinarian before you give your dog or cat any type of medication. Your vet may prescribe a topical cream or ointment that reduces itching, or may recommend antihistamines, steroids, or other types of medications.

Allergy testing is often used to determine the specific allergens that cause symptoms. During the test, various types of allergens are injected into your dog or cat's skin. If your pet is allergic to the substance, small red bumps will appear on the skin. Identifying the type of allergens that trigger reactions help your veterinarian develop an effective treatment plan.

Do you think that your pet may have seasonal allergies? We can provide a diagnosis and offer treatment that will help your pet feel more comfortable. Call us to schedule an appointment.

Sources:

Peteducation.com: Allergies & Atopy in Dogs

http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=2+2082&aid=503

Michigan Humane Society: Can Pets Have Seasonal Allergies?

http://support.michiganhumane.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=16336&news_iv_ctrl=1883

CNN: How to Help Your Pets with Allergies, 3/19/11

http://www.cnn.com/2011/LIVING/03/19/pet.allergies.mnn/

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Testimonials

  •           8/29/2017

    I love Balboa Pet Hospital! Balboa Pet Hospital's staff is amazing! The staff is knowledgeable, caring and above all honest! I feel confident that my pets are getting the best possible care there. The staff has always taken time to answer all of my questions and if I think of something after my appointment, I can just email! I know I won’t have to wait too long for response.

    Unfortunately, this year I’ve had to make some really difficult decisions. The compassion the staff showed to both my pet and I made these unbearable times tolerable. I am indebted to both Dr. Del Rosso and (the wonderful) Dr. Ravn for their kindness, compassion and dedication.

    If you are new to the area or just looking for a new vet, please give Balboa pet Hospital a call!

  •           6/5/2017

    LOVE everything about this place!!! The people are all super nice & caring. I never feel like they’re trying to sell me stuff I don’t need. The vets (especially Dr. Alice Chan) are wonderful, I always fee; comfortable coming here whenever Walle has an issue. They even help me file the insurance claims after each visit! Would highly recommended any pet owners to see them for their fur-baby needs.

  •           6/5/2017

    My dog has been a regular patient since 7 years ago. Once in a while we visit other hospitals due to time conflicts. However, we always go back to Balboa Pet Hospital. My dog has bad allergy and the doctors and assistants always follow up with us after the treatments or visits, help us submit the insurance claims. It’s not a cheapest place to go but their patience and caring are irreplaceable.

  •           4/28/2017

    I’m glad to have found Balboa Pet Hospital near my home. It’s definitely a hidden gem! Dr. Chan saw my dog, Oreo, for her skin problem last week, and my three cats, Pepper, Tofu and Cola, today for annual check-up. She’s very patient (especially with Oreo who’s shy to strangers), knowledgeable and approachable. The front staffs are also very friendly and helpful. They are so prompt to reply my email (within a few hours when I checked back my mailbox). All my pets are about 1-year-old and I’ll definitely bring them here for their health issues/checkup in many years followed.

  •           5/4/2017

    Brought my dog here for a checkup and some minor concerns. Dr. Chan was very professional. She got my dog the treatment he needed and answered all my questions regarding my concerns. The rest of the staff were very friendly and gentle with my dog. You could tell that the staff are genuine animal lovers; definitely something you want when you entrust the health of your pet to someone.

  •           5 of 5

    Been bringing our animals to Balboa for over 25 years and will continue because they provide great advice and care. We love Dr. D and staff are really helpful and friendly. Now if I can find medical care for myself like my animals get at Balboa...

  •           5 of 5

    I have been a patron of Balboa Pet Hospital for almost 500 years now (wink). I love Everybody there and feel they are have always been a great resource and the BEST support system for everything pertaining to my pets.

  •          

    The staff is very kind and gentle, the doctors are very caring and patient when dealing with my scared cat Lulu. I appreciate the time they took to put her at ease and making this procedure as painless as possible for the both of us. Will definitely be spreading the word. Thank you Balboa Pet Hospital.

    Linda P.

    San Francisco, CA

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