Like people, allergies are a common problem for dogs and cats. Some pets have food allergies, while others may be allergic to substances in their indoor or outdoor environment. Pets also suffer from flea and seasonal allergies. If you notice your pet is scratching, biting, or licking his skin more than normal, chances are he could be suffering from an allergy. A visit with one of our veterinarians at Clanton-Malphus-Hodges Veterinary Hospital & Pet Motel in Thomasville for a pet wellness exam will enable us to accurately diagnose your pet's condition.
Signs Your Pet May Have Allergies
When pets are sensitive to substances in their food or environment, their immune system responds by triggering an allergic reaction or symptoms of their condition. Some signs your pet may have allergies include:
- Incessant scratching and licking or biting his skin
- Dry, red, irritated skin
- Skin rashes or hives
- Facial swelling
- Chronic ear infections
- Abnormal coughing or sneezing
- Discharge from your pet’s eyes
- Trouble breathing
- Vomiting or diarrhea
Common Causes of Pet Allergies
Pet allergies can often be divided into three categories:
- Environmental allergies – those triggered by substances in your pet’s indoor or outdoor environment such as chemicals in household products, ingredients in grooming products, dust, mold, mildew, plants and trees, flowers, grasses, and pollen. Your pet’s symptoms may intensify during spring and summer due to seasonal changes in his environment or be constant year-round.
- Food allergies – those triggered by certain ingredients in your pet’s food such as chicken, lamb, beef, soy, or dairy products.
- Flea allergies – those triggered by flea saliva. If your pet is sensitive to flea saliva, one bite can lead to incessant itching and scratching.
If we suspect your pet has an allergy, we will perform diagnostics in the form of blood or skin tests to determine the type of allergy your pet has and what triggers his allergy symptoms. Once we have identified the cause of your pet’s allergies, you can limit your pet’s exposure to these allergens to help relieve his symptoms.
Some allergens can be avoided by changing your pet’s diet, household cleaners, or grooming products. Keeping your pet away from plants and grasses that trigger its symptoms can also help. Flea allergies can be controlled through year-round medication to prevent infestations. For outdoor allergens that can’t be avoided, your veterinarian can prescribe medication, antibiotics, or topical creams to help manage your pet’s symptoms.
See Our Veterinarians for Pet Allergy Treatment in Thomasville, GA
At Clanton-Malphus-Hodges Veterinary Hospital & Pet Motel, we offer diagnostics for pet allergies as part of our pet wellness care. To schedule an appointment with one of our veterinarians, call our team today at (229) 226-1914 or reach us through our website by using our online contact form.