Is your itchy pet driving you crazy? Pollen counts are at high levels now. Inhaled or contact allergies to pollens, molds or dust mites are often the cause. Food allergies are possible but less common. Parasites like fleas or skin mites and autoimmune diseases can also be the culprits.
While humans experience allergies as a runny nose and eyes – it’s our pet’s skin that is most affected by their allergies. This includes the skin of the ear canals, so allergies may be the real cause of many ‘ear infections’.
Histamines are important in allergic reactions in people, but not in our pets. So antihistamines are not often effective in reducing our pets’ itchiness. Steroids work well to stop the itchiness but can have serious side effects if used too often. There are safer medications available to help with the long-term control of itchiness.
Allergies tend to get worse with age – and more frustrating! A step-by-step approach to finding the cause and the best treatment takes time and patience. Record when your pet experiences itchiness and what food they are eating to help in diagnosing and treating your itchy pet.
Next time, I’ll explain more about how you, and CAH, can help your allergic pet.