How do I know if my dog has allergies?
If you think your dog might be allergic to something, it’s best to take her to a vet. The vet may be able to help you determine what could potentially be causing the allergies through either a process of elimination or through allergy testing. Of course, allergy testing often costs a few hundred dollars, but is well worth it in some cases.
What are the symptoms of allergies?
The symptoms will vary from dog to dog and could include sneezing, itchy skin, hair loss, an upset stomach or ear infections. The dog’s skin could be flaky or red, and the dog may be scratching, licking or biting herself in an attempt to relieve the itching. Of course, these symptoms could be related to several other health issues, which is why it’s always best to get a vet’s opinion.
What could a dog be allergic to?
A dog could be allergic to just about anything, but here are some of the more common causes of allergies in dogs:
Pollen or dust:
Just like people, dogs can be allergic to pollen, dust or even different cleaning chemicals in their environment. For example, a dog could be allergic to the detergent you use to wash his bedding.
Dogs can be allergic to certain grains such as corn or wheat. Some dog owners try switching their dogs to a grain-free food and grain-free dog treats, and they notice a difference very quickly.
Some dogs are allergic to certain protein sources such as chicken or beef and need to be fed a diet with a different protein source. For example, if the dog is allergic to chicken, he may do better on a salmon- or turkey-based food. Through dogIDs, there are a variety of different treat flavors such as salmon sticks or liver and sweet potato treats. Bison rawhides are another favorite option for dogs with allergies. These hypoallergenic rawhides are made from free-range American buffalo without chemicals, hormones or antibiotics.
Pet beds are often filled with cedar shavings because cedar can help repel fleas and control pet odors. However, some dogs are allergic to cedar. If that’s the case with your dog, consider a bumper dog bed from dogIDs. These beds are filled with 100 percent recycled Intelliloft fiber (made from recycled bottles), and there is even an organic version of the bed available.
Metal or other materials:
Dogs can even be allergic to certain metals. If that’s the case with your dog, you’ll want to find a nylon dog collar or a collar made with other soft material instead of a chain-type collar. Also consider what type of bowl you use to feed your dog.
Are there any products to give my dog allergy relief?
Yes, thank goodness. While these products may not cure your dog’s allergies, they can provide temporary relief. A product called Skin & Coat Repair is one option. Unfortunately, dogs with allergies often end up with itchy skin and hair loss. Skin & Coat Repair is a supplement that contains omega fatty acids and antioxidants which can improve the health of your dog’s skin, resulting in less scratching.
Does your dog have allergies?
Allergies are a problem for a lot of dogs, but hopefully some of these ideas can really make a difference. Let us know what has worked for your dog.
About Lindsay Stordahl
Lindsay Stordahl is a blogger for dogIDs.com. She has a black Lab mix named Ace and two naughty cats named Beamer and Scout. Lindsay owns a pet sitting business called Run That Mutt and also maintains the blog ThatMutt.com. ... Add Lindsay to your Google+ circles at https://plus.google.com/u/0/102050652657732372317/posts. You can follow Lindsay on Twitter @ThatMutt.