If you begin to notice that your pet is constantly scratching, shaking his ears and behaving restlessly, most likely, there was an allergic reaction to any irritant. This is an occasion to think about what could cause allergies and what to do next.
Types of allergic reactions in animals
The dog is subject to various stimuli throughout his life. Allergies are divided according to the type of irritant and the specifics of the course of the disease. In the second case , two types can be distinguished:
- Cumulative – the allergen accumulates gradually, the body’s reaction is slowed down, the immune system is still trying to recognize the danger and is in no hurry to take retaliatory measures.
- Instantaneous – the body reacts almost immediately as soon as it encounters an irritant.
The classification by type of stimulus is much more extensive. It includes many chemical allergens and irritants of natural origin.
Food allergy in dogs.
Allergy to food is one of the most popular and is a reaction of the dog’s body to vegetable or animal protein. It manifests itself in the feeding process. The following products in dry and natural feeds are particularly dangerous:
- dairy products;
- wheat and corn.
The main signs of allergy to food are a rash on the muzzle, abdomen and limbs; disorders of the food tract, atypical behavior for a dog. It is necessary to select food with caution, after consulting with a veterinarian. Feed the animal only with natural ingredients, do not skimp on pet nutrition.
This is a seasonal type of allergy that can appear in any pet. The reaction is caused not by the flea itself, but by its saliva, which gets into the wound and causes severe itching in the dog. An insect bite can provoke concomitant diseases, infections, fungi and worms. You can prevent dermatitis with the help of special long-acting drugs.
The main signs of “flea” dermatitis: dandruff (mostly black), severe itching, bruises and abrasions, loss of appetite.
Treatment is primarily aimed at destroying the allergen itself, and then at relieving inflammation and improving the condition of the pet’s skin.
The reaction to it can be cumulative and instantaneous, depending on the state of the pet’s immunity. Allergy occurs in close contact with an irritant. An allergen can be a collar, hygiene products, chemical waste or synthetic fabrics.
The main symptoms are peeling of the paws, redness of the skin, the appearance of blisters, pimples, itching and hair loss. To treat the pet, it is isolated from the irritant, then various ointments prescribed by the veterinarian are used. Sometimes a doctor may prescribe special medications that stimulate the immune system.
This is a hereditary allergic reaction that can manifest itself due to pollen of plants, insects, worms, various odors, chemicals, shampoos and other hygiene products. Such an allergy is difficult to tolerate and practically untreated. The dog will have to constantly take medications to avoid relapse. The role of irritants is most often played by the sun’s rays, perfumes, substances on human skin.
The main causes of atopic dermatitis are genetics, ecology, climatic conditions, chronic diseases and artificial additives in products.
This is a type of allergy caused by an infectious disease or virus. It can develop due to fungus, tuberculosis. The main signs of allergies: itching, restless behavior, redness. Antibiotics prescribed by a veterinarian are used for treatment.
Allergic otitis media.
Otitis media is an inflammation of the dog’s ear (or both). It can be external, medium or internal. Characteristic signs: restless behavior, pain in the ears, sulfur discharge, unpleasant odor.
Autoimmune allergy occurs due to improper or unstable functioning of the animal’s immune system, which destroys the body’s own cells. It manifests itself in the form of pemphigus and lupus. Autoimmune allergy can lead to the following diseases:
- vitiligo (pigmentation change);
- vasculitis (lesion of blood vessels);
- polychondritis (cartilage damage near the ears).
It is treated by the introduction of special drugs on the recommendation of a veterinarian.
Why does a dog have an allergy to food
The exact causes of food allergies in dogs are difficult to determine. An allergic reaction to food is of an individual nature. That is, the same ingredient can be safe for one dog and dangerous for another. The animal may be prone to allergies due to genetic predisposition or due to the abundance of the following foods in the diet:
- fried, salted, smoked dishes.
The constant delicacy of confectionery increases the sensitivity of the animal to meat products, fish, dairy products, eggs and soy products. Most often, allergies occur to chicken and the cereal component.
Scientists identify another reason for allergies to dog food – excessive sterility of the environment. The animal’s immune system must fight viruses and parasites. And because of sterility, she “remains out of work” and weakens. Because of this, the pet becomes more sensitive to everything.
Signs of allergy in dogs to food
Allergy to dog food, first of all, is manifested by severe itching of the skin. The pet starts scratching constantly (scratching everything: sides, ears, muzzle) and licking paws. In dogs, abundantly covered with hair, it is difficult to notice symptoms, since ulcers and redness are hidden.
Gradually, the skin begins to turn red, pus appears. The owners mistakenly begin to treat the pet from fleas and ticks, not realizing that these are manifestations of food allergies. It is better to take the dog to the veterinarian so that he can diagnose and establish the nature of the disease.
A basic set of warning signs:
- The wool begins to disappear in chunks, in different places.
- Bald spots gradually grow.
- Wet eczema appears in the armpits and folds.
- There is a cloying sweet smell when the combs fester.
Another symptom of food allergies in dogs is ear discharge. The animal constantly shakes its ears, from which a substance with an unpleasant odor is released. There is no result from medicines against ticks and fleas. Improvements are noted only from anti-allergenic drugs.
There is lacrimation, a viscous mass accumulates in the corners of the eye. Antibiotics help alleviate the symptoms for a while. However, after their cancellation, a new round of allergies begins.
Allergen products: what can be given to a dog
The veterinarian will recommend a list of products that can be fed to the animal even in the midst of the disease. If you don’t know what your dog is allergic to, let her:
- oats, rice, buckwheat;
- white sea fish;
- green fruits and vegetables (pears, apples, zucchini, cucumbers);
- natural fermented milk products (yogurt, fermented baked milk, kefir);
- rabbit, turkey, lamb.
How to treat food allergies in dogs
The treatment of allergies in dogs depends on the state of health of the animal, the severity of the process, the presence of infection, age and other factors. It is prescribed individually, after consultation with a veterinarian. Therapy should be comprehensive and include the following activities:
- hypoallergenic diet;
- detection and elimination of allergen (irritant);
- taking medications to eliminate allergy symptoms.
It is necessary to introduce restrictions in the diet. If the symptoms include swelling, purulent discharge, lacrimation, then the veterinarian may prescribe rinses, ointments or drops. In case of skin lesions, hair loss, antiseptic and antipruritic drugs are prescribed. If the dog starts to choke, you need to take it to the clinic urgently.
The veterinarian prescribes medications, selects the dose and duration of treatment. The choice of drugs is quite wide, but usually prefer medications that reduce sensitivity, eliminate swelling and itching. The therapy may include funds aimed at strengthening the immune system.
Remember that only a doctor can prescribe medications. Home treatment can provoke deterioration of the animal’s condition.
How to choose dog food
It is necessary to select hypoallergenic food after tests. If you take the product at your discretion, you can worsen the situation. Show the pet to the veterinarian. A specialist will take a skin scrape and perform a blood test.
After receiving the results, the doctor will give recommendations on the choice of feed.
How to choose what to feed the dog?
- Hypoallergenic formulations should be sought only in super premium and holistic feed classes.
- Be sure to take into account the age of the pet, the level of its activity, the physiological state.
- Try different feeds if some of them didn’t suit you and don’t look for variety if the diet is comfortable for the pet.
Rating of veterinary food for dogs with allergies
There are many hypoallergenic feeds on the market. We have compiled a rating of products based on the reviews of veterinarians and owners of pussies with allergies.
Monge Dog Speciality Hypo
Monge produces its products in Italian and Thai factories using the latest equipment and original recipes. There are no artificial additives, dyes and preservatives in the feed. Fresh or dehydrated meat/fish is used as a protein component, rice is used as a carbohydrate component. The product contains ingredients to normalize the intestinal microflora.
GO! Sensitivity Limited Ingredient
The Sensitivity Limited Ingredient feed line consists of five products for dogs with sensitive digestion/individual intolerance to individual components. The company produces holistic class products in Canada.
Unique GO rations! satisfy all the nutritional needs of the animal. There is one meat component in the composition – turkey, duck, venison or salmon. The raw materials are subjected to steam treatment with preservation of all useful properties. The feed does not contain artificial dyes, gluten, offal, soy, corn. All ingredients are environmentally friendly and safe for the pet’s health.
Advance feeds are suitable for dogs with a weak stomach and allergies. The line contains more than 30 formulas for different breeds and ages. The composition of hypoallergenic food contains 100% easily digestible protein, which prevents stomach irritation. Corn starch is used as a carbohydrate component. Pets perfectly perceive Advance products rich in vitamins and amino acids.