What is causing your dog to itch?
“Itchiness” in dogs is commonly caused by allergies. People with allergies usually have symptoms of watery eyes and a runny nose. But dogs with allergies display different symptoms- they itch.
Dogs with allergies will scratch and chew and /or lick above their tail, sides, thighs, groin and feet. You may see them rubbing their ears or face on the furniture. There may be thinning of the hair coat, bald areas, and scabs from the ongoing licking and chewing.
But, what is it your dog is allergic to? There are hundreds of possibilities.
No one really understands why an individual develops allergies. If your pet’s allergies are severe, or not easily controlled despite treatment, or you feel you over-medicate your pet (especially with steroids which can cause unwanted side-effects), maybe it’s time to look at allergy testing and desensitization injections.
With today’s advances in technology, a blood test is now available that can identify what specifically your dog is allergic to. Any substance that causes an allergy is called an allergen- and this is what the blood test identifies. Once the allergens are identified the laboratory will synthesize the hyposensitization formula unique for your pet so that we can start a schedule of hyposensitization injections. Many of our patients have had dramatic response with hyposensitization injections for allergies.
Hyposensitization injections have up to a 90% success rate, although it may take 3-5 months for results. We can easily teach you how to give injections, or if you prefer, we can give the injection for you. Although hyposensitization is an allergy management system that is usually required for life, the results along with the ability to reduce long-term medications makes it desirable for many of our clients.
What Are the General Symptoms of Allergies in Dogs?
- Itchy, red skin
- Itchy, runny eyes
- Itchy back or base of tail (most commonly flea allergy)
- Ear infections
- Snoring caused by an inflamed throat
- Paw chewing/swollen paws
- Allergic dogs may also suffer from secondary bacterial or yeast skin infections, which may cause hair loss, scabs or crusts on the skin.
What is hyposensitzation?
It is important to realize that allergies are not “cured”. Instead, hyposensitization increases your pet’s tolerance to the allergens that he or she is allergic to. This retrains your pet’s immune system to deal with future exposure to those allergens, which then reduces or eliminates allergy symptoms. For more information on allergy testing and hyposensitization injections from Spectrum Laboratories.