Understanding Seasonal Allergies In Dogs

Like humans, it’s not uncommon for a dog to get allergies. Two of the most common allergies in dogs are:

  1. Seasonal allergies
  2. Food allergies

In this article, we’re going to concentrate on seasonal dog allergies, what they are, the symptoms, and how you can treat them.

What Are Seasonal Dog Allergies?

Seasonal dog allergies mainly occur at certain times throughout the year, however, it is entirely possible that he could develop year-round allergies, especially in the case of older dogs.

Let’s take a look at some of the most common dog allergies, and break them down further:

  • Flea Bites
  • Dust Mites
  • Grass / Pollen

Flea Bites

Many dogs are sensitive to flea bites, which can induce allergic reactions in the concerned area bitten by the fleas. Hence, the affected area looks like hairless area and the dog starts scratching.

Fleas cause severe dermatitis in dogs with severe flea infestations. Many times, the flea bite causes allergic reactions in the dogs.  In many occasions, dogs experience severe discomfort due to these allergic reactions. Medicated collars are available to treat and prevent the infestation with external parasites like ticks or fleas.

Many drugs have come in market to treat the fleas and other parasites, but a trip to your veterinarian is always a good idea to ensure the fleas are treated to avoid infestation.

Dust Mites

Perhaps your dog will be one of the lucky ones who never gets any skin problems.  But sometimes, even the most pampered and well groomed dog can catch a dog skin problem.  Any dog, no matter what kind of breed or environment he’s in, can be a candidate for a variety of dog skin problems.

Examples of parasites that attack even the cleanest of the dog are mites. Mites are very tiny parasites that cause dog skin problems by triggering irritation and also cause infection.  There are three types of mites that cause problems in dogs.  Demodex and Sarcoptes both cause mange and Otodectes causes inflammation of the ear.

Among the three types of mites that causes dog skin problem, Otodectes is the only type that can be seen without the use of a microscope.  Seldom, you may see them as tiny white moving dots in the ear.

Demodex is another type of mite that causes dog skin problem.  Although they are naturally carried by most dogs, this type of mite does not usually cause nuisance.  But it can become a dog skin problem from time to time when your dog is undergoing stress.  It can also attack puppies and causes dog skin problem because puppies’ natural defenses are not fully developed yet and are more susceptible to this parasite’s attack.

Demodex causes what is termed as pustular dermatitis in your cute puppies, located around the head and shoulders.  Sometimes it becomes infected, a dog skin problem that is known as juvenile pyoderma.  Signs of this dog skin problem are: hair loss, flaky and oily skin, and a characteristic “mousy” odor.

In treating this type of dog skin problem, your dog must be taken to the vet within 24 hours of this developing or serious scarring can occur.  Your vet can prescribe antibiotics and drugs that give your dog effective relief.  Your vet might also suggest a special shampoo to control the oiliness of the coat as well as the smell.

Sarcoptes is another type of mites that cause dog skin problem that can affect your dog regardless of his age.  This type of mite is more commonly known as scabies, a dog skin problem that can also affect humans.  The Sarcoptes burrow through the skin and produces tunnels where they lay their eggs.  When this type of dog skin problem attacks humans, the infection usually dies away, although you should still consider treating it.

Grass / Pollen

It is possible that your dog can be allergic to grass. This is caused by pollen which even though we can’t see it, it actually floats through the air.

This can then be absorbed into the dog’s skin causing an allergic reaction.

The height of the pollen season is usually spring / early summer, but bear in mind even if you keep your furry friend indoors during this time, you can also transfer pollen through your clothes, shoes etc.

Dogs allergic to grass usually develop dermatitis. Just like people experience hay fever, dogs also suffer the same type of fever.  The main difference is that while men and women will show signs of being congested and will sneeze a lot after inhaling pollen, dogs will immediately come down with bothersome itchy skin that makes them scratch like crazy.

The allergy is very progressive and works very fast to show signs of the dog health symptom of dermatitis.  Take notice of most typical cases where your dog may start itching around the months of August and September.  Dog health symptoms will generally always start during these two months.

While carrying these symptoms, they may also start itching badly in the tree pollen season of March and April.  But it is not over yet, because if your dog is carrying the dog health symptom of dermatitis, they will then start scratching during the grass pollen season of May, June, and typically early July.

As you can see by now, these dog health symptoms can be very serious and eventually lead to year-round scratching problem.  Your dog will become so sensitive to all other substances around them that she could start reacting violently to the simple dust and mold that is found around most houses.

If your dog is less than six months old then you usually will not need to worry about the dog health symptom of dermatitis.  Typically, dermatitis begins in dogs at a later age of three years old.

The Symptoms & Treatment Of Dog Allergies

Some of the symptoms of seasonal dog allergies may be:

  • Increased scratching
  • Itchy, red, moist or scabbed skin
  • Itchy and/or runny eyes
  • Itchy back and/or base of tail
  • Itchy ears and ear infections
  • Sneezing
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Paw chewing and/or swollen paws
  • Constant licking

The first sign of discomfort usually shown by an allergic dog is itchy, irritated skin. Some dogs also get a runny nose or eyes, sneeze or even suffer from vomiting and diarrhea. Uncovering the source of the allergy can be quite frustrating for owners and veterinarians alike.

Another common allergic condition is known as atopy. Atopy refers to an inhalant allergy or a reaction to environmental components. Molds, plants, dust, even furniture stuffing fall into this category. Signs of atopy may be seasonal. The only practical way to discover what’s bothering this allergic dog is to ask a veterinary dermatologist to conduct an intradermal skin test, much as is done with human allergy sufferers. Then you can try avoiding offensive material, or attempt hyposensitization. These problems are also best discussed with a qualified dermatologist.

One of the most common summertime complaints seen by veterinarians are hot spots – round hairless patches of tender, red, oozing skin which seem to erupt overnight. They are usually found on the rump, although they may appear anywhere on the body. Hot spots are especially prevalent in heavy-coated breeds and in any dog with skin allergies.

Hot spots probably begin as a focus of irritation caused by a flea bite, impacted anal sacs or other small annoyances. However, the more the dog licks and chews at the spot, the worse it feels, so the more the animal licks and chews. A small problem explodes into a large one. These lesions need to be treated promptly before you have a dog in agony.

For dust mites in particular, rapid treatment is also very important in treating this type of dog skin problem in order to avoid human infections and also to prevent your dog from harming himself by scratching and biting.  The vet can prescribe special chemicals that are applied in insecticidal shampoos.  The vet can also prescribe drugs to help stop your dog from biting and scratching himself.

Additional Help With Seasonal Allergies In Dogs

So how can we help? Well our range of supplements can help with the most common symptoms of seasonal allergies in dogs, let’s have a look at them here.

TummyWorks

Tummyworks is the best probiotics powder for allergy relief, hot spot treatment, diarrhea, yeast infection, itching and a breath freshener, plus added digestive enzymes improve digestion.

TummyWorks will make your dog healthier within days, it gives them all the good bacteria they need and quickly restores their gut health, and alleviates many problems including allergies and skin problems especially itching.

More information about TummyWorks can be found from the following link:

TummyWorks

Also check out the new addition to our TummyWorks range, TummyWorks chews!

Omegease

Treat your pet to all of the benefits of omega 3, 6 & 9 fatty acids. Give them the best fish oil, made from the finest wild caught non-predatory fish and produced to the highest possible quality standards.

Please find more information about our wild Alaskan salmon oil from the following link:

Finest For Pets Omegease

The good news is with seasonal dog allergies, the condition is usually easily resolved, however, should there be any severe reactions you will need veterinarian input.