At Grandview Animal Hospital, we know pets are members of the family. Whether your pet loves staying home or exploring every nook and cranny of their yard, the occasional health issue will come up, and some pets experience unexpected allergic reactions just as humans sometimes do.
Grandview Animal Hospital offers a wide range of veterinary services to pet parents in the areas of South Surrey, Langley, Langley Township, Delta, Cloverdale, Newton, and White Rock. Our office also stays open until midnight for your convenience. We’d love to help keep your pet healthy and provide answers to your veterinary concerns. Read on to find out how to identify allergic reactions in your pet and how to help them.
The allergies we know are actually reactions of the immune system guarding against something it registers as harmful, whether it actually is or not. This holds true for pets like dogs and cats as well as humans. You may see a variety of symptoms in your pets such as runny nose, rash, itching, hair loss, facial swelling, sneezing, red eyes, excessive licking, or frequent ear infections, to name a few.
Types of Allergies
Pets may encounter allergens while walking outdoors or even inside their homes, in their food, or if they brush up against something that prompts an allergic reaction. These categories tend to cross, where exposure to one type of allergen like an environmental stimulus has effects on the skin as well as other effects, so upon initial detection, they might be classified as skin allergies.
Skin allergies, also called dermatitis, may begin with itching or hives and lead to hot spots, red and/or feverish skin, flaking, or scabs. Allergies to food and the environment can manifest themselves on skin. Fleas often prompt an allergic reaction, whether the actual allergy is to the bites themselves or to flea saliva, and you will start to see ‘flea dirt’ (dried blood left behind by fleas) on the skin and in fur. Skin allergies generally result in constant irritation for your pet, and any case of dermatitis could possibly lead to other infections as scratching and chewing at skin causes lacerations.
Ingesting food containing something a pet is allergic to can make skin itch as well as cause swelling and hives, many times around the ears or paws, which may lead to ear and foot infections, dull coat, and you will often see gastrointestinal problems along with it like vomiting and diarrhea. If you have just changed your pet’s food and see an immediate reaction, at least you know where to start, but if you’re unsure where the allergen came from you’ll need to change foods (preferably to bland and natural with minimal fillers) to narrow down which ingredient is the allergen for your pet.
Possible environmental allergies may include dust, pollen, mold, plants, or something else in the yard or environment that they may come in contact with. This also frequently manifests as dermatitis, making skin itchy and inflamed around ears, paws, ankles, nose, under the arms, groin, or near the eyes.
In other cases, your pet may experience dangerous reactions to bee stings, other insect bites, medication, or immunizations. Anaphylactic shock is fairly rare in cats and dogs but can be fatal if they have an acute reaction; immediately following your pet getting shots or a new medication, observe them closely to be sure they’re not having a bad reaction to it.
Veterinary Care for Pet Allergies
To treat an allergy, the best way is obviously to prevent your pet’s exposure to it, like medication, certain food, or fleas. Our veterinarian can recommend excellent flea care here in the Newton, Delta, and Langley Township areas. If it appears to be something in your yard and you haven’t yet figured out what, your veterinarian can prescribe medication, so your pet won’t have to suffer from the symptoms.
Call Grandview Animal Hospital Today For An Appointment!
If your pet is suffering from allergies or if they are due for a wellness exam, give Grandview Animal Hospital a call today! We are currently accepting new patients.