Look Out for Fido’s Fall Allergies!

Leaves falling, air chilling, pets… sneezing? Well, not quite, but the fall does bring out allergies in certain dog breeds. With fall in full swing, it’s likely pets with fall allergies may be showing symptoms.

Dog Fall Allergies

Causes

Canine seasonal allergies are caused by similar factors that lead to human seasonal allergies. Different types of plants, including many variants of weeds, are at their peak season during the fall. Common weeds that pollinate in the fall include ragweed, tumbleweed, sagebrush, plantain, cocklebur, and lamb’s quarter. If any of these weeds are common to your area, be careful when letting your furry friend outside, and try to watch what plants he rubs on. Now, here in California, you would think we don’t have to worry about season allergy issues: and you’d be WRONG! In warm weather areas, more plants are able to bloom year round, meaning that there are more allergens in the air. Any number of blooming plants can be causing your dog’s fall allergies, so it is important to be on alert for symptoms.

Symptoms

Now, as our hilarious header indicated, pets don’t suffer from allergies in the same way humans do. We normally characterize allergies as runny, sneezy, and cough(y?). Our pets experience generally experience allergies with itching, biting, and licking, Most allergies for animals manifest on the skin, and your dog wants to remedy that allergy as soon as possible with the only way they know how. These symptoms can lead to hair loss in the spots being scratched or bitten. Also, keep on the lookout for infections caused by scratching and biting! Being so rough with the skin can lead to breakage, leaving an open wound for allergens and dirt particles to enter in and cause some damage.

Other common symptoms are usually ear related. If your dog is scratching his ears a lot of suffering from chronic ear infections, it is possible he could be suffering from seasonal allergies.

Solutions

If your pet is suffering from any of the above symptoms, fear not! There are plenty of solutions to help your dog beat his seasonal allergies. Clearly, the first thing you want to do is consult your vet and understand which treatment type will best suit your pet. Shampoos, anti-histamines, and steroids are all possible treatment options to relieve your dog of fall allergies. There is a small chance the problem could be more severe, in which case additional treatment would be recommended. Those treatments could include immunosuppressants or desensitization therapy.

Information courtesy of Dr. Jessica Vogelsand, DVM, of VetStreet: http://www.vetstreet.com/our-pet-experts/signs-your-dog-or-cat-may-have-fall-allergies 

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