It is no secret that allergies can cause misery and discomfort, especially when they arrive regularly with the changing seasons. But did you know that dogs can also suffer from seasonal allergies?
Various environmental triggers can cause seasonal allergies in dogs. Triggers may include pollen from trees, grasses, and weeds. Dogs with seasonal allergies may display skin redness or rash, frequent scratching, or red, watery eyes. Recognizing allergy symptoms and exploring helpful treatments for dogs is essential if you’re concerned about your pup’s health and comfort.
Seasonal allergies in dogs can be challenging to diagnose and manage. Still, you can help reduce your pup’s discomfort with the right treatment plan. In the following sections, we explore common symptoms to look for and possible treatments. So keep reading to learn more about how you can help your pup stay comfortable and healthy!
How Do I Know If My Dog Is Having Seasonal Allergies?
Symptoms like sneezing, coughing, itchy skin, facial rubbing, ear infection, and skin discoloration may occur in dogs with seasonal allergies.
However, different pooches have different symptoms depending on their particular allergies.
What Do Seasonal Allergies Look Like In A Dog?
If your furry friend has seasonal allergies, they may display the following symptoms:
- Ear infection
- Facial rubbing
- Hair loss from excessive scratching
- Itchy skin
- Licking certain areas excessively, like paws
- Licking anal glands
- Odor from the skin caused by yeast or bacterial infections
- Redness or soreness around the eyes, ears, or belly
- Scratching their skin with furniture or on the carpet
- Skin discoloration
If you notice these symptoms, take your dog to a vet for proper diagnosis and treatment.
Effect Of Allergies On A Dog’s Behavior
Allergies can cause your pup to act differently than they usually do. Such behavior can include excessive itching, leading to general discomfort.
Over time, their discomfort may cause other physical or emotional reactions, such as increased nervousness or restlessness. The discomfort and frustration from being unable to eliminate allergy symptoms can cause dogs anxiety. The inflammatory cytokines that cause allergies may also impact your pup’s brain and mental health.
Monitor changes in your pup’s behavior and take them to the vet for a proper diagnosis if you suspect allergies are causing their distress. With seasonal allergies, it is crucial to be aware of the months when environmental allergens peak. This can help you plan for prevention or treatment.
What Time Of Year Do Dogs Get Allergies?
Allergy season for your pooch typically occurs between March and September. During this time, your four-legged friends can be more susceptible to allergens, causing various reactions. However, the times of the year your particular dog develops allergies will vary depending on your region and climate.
Though the exact timing varies by region, common environmental culprits include pollen, mold spores, and dust mites. Below is a little overview to help you better understand when to expect seasonal allergies:
- Tree pollen is common in March and April.
- Grass pollen is most common in May, June, and July.
- Flowering weeds typically occur in June, July, and August.
During these times, pollen and other allergens become airborne and potentially trigger allergic reactions in doggies. However, monitoring your pup throughout the year is essential because some dogs may also be affected by other environmental allergens.
When Should I Be Worried About My Dog’s Allergies?
If your canine starts showing persistent signs of allergies, such as constant scratching, licking, or other skin irritations, such as redness, swelling, discoloration, or ear infections, consult a vet.
Vets can help you determine the cause of your pup’s allergies and provide treatment recommendations. If you are worried about your pup’s allergies, be proactive and take measures to protect them from developing further issues:
- Feed high-quality hypoallergenic food
- Provide a clean environment free of allergens
- Use natural remedies such as herbs or supplements
By doing so, you can ensure your pup stays healthy and happy during allergy season.
What Are The Most Common Seasonal Allergies For Dogs?
Pollen, fungal spores, mold and mildew, grass, specific plants, and fleas are common seasonal allergens for dogs. Specific allergy symptoms vary depending on the dog breed type.
Following is a list of the most frequent seasonal allergies in dogs:
Pollen is one of the most common seasonal allergens for doggies and can cause various symptoms. However, it can be challenging to determine whether pollen is the underlying cause of an allergic reaction in your canine because many may have sensitivities to allergens besides pollen.
Fungal spores are another common allergen for our furry friends, resulting in similar allergic reactions to those from pollen. You can find such spores in damp areas or around decaying vegetation.
Mold And Mildew
Mold and mildew are common allergens that can cause allergies in dogs. These allergens thrive in damp, warm environments and can cause skin irritation and other allergy-related symptoms.
Though grass allergies are less common in our furry companions, this allergen can still cause problems for some pooches. In addition, some dogs may only be allergic to certain weeds or grass. However, others may be sensitive to a wide variety.
Certain plants can aggravate your pooch’s seasonal allergies. Dogs may develop allergies to both the plant itself and the pollen from these plants.
Fleas are another common source of allergies for some pups. These tiny insects bite a canine’s skin and feed off their blood, which can cause irritation and itching. However, some dogs may be far more sensitive to flea’s saliva than others.
How Long Do Seasonal Allergies Last In Dogs?
Seasonal allergies in dogs typically last at least a month or two. This is because such allergies are exclusive to the particular season of the year.
A healthy dog typically recovers after the second month when its immunity system gradually improves at counteracting the effects of seasonal allergies.
When Should I Take My Dog To The Vet For Allergies?
If your dog suffers from seasonal allergy symptoms for an unexpectedly prolonged time, take them to a vet as soon as possible. Allergies can cause severe discomfort and distress in animals. Don’t wait until your doggie’s distress becomes unbearable before seeking help.
Your veterinarian can help diagnose the exact cause of your dog’s allergies and determine the best treatment plan.
How Do Vets Check For Allergies In Dogs?
A vet starts by assessing the dog, diagnosing allergies, providing appropriate treatments, and offering prescriptions. In addition, vets may perform blood and skin tests under some conditions.
Sometimes, vets recommend a special diet or specific medications if your buddy suffers from a food allergy.
When treating seasonal dog allergies, a vet determines the disease and type of allergy and looks for signs of allergic reactions. After deciding that your friend suffers from allergies, vets may prescribe various treatments depending on the severity of the response.
Allergy treatments can include antihistamines, ointments or salves to reduce inflammation, shampoos with specific ingredients to calm the skin or topical steroids. However, vets may recommend injections, oral medications, or lifestyle changes for more severe cases, such as limiting contact with potential allergy triggers.
What Can I Give My Dog For Seasonal Allergies?
Anti-inflammatory steroids, antihistamine treatment, allergy shots, shampoo therapy, omega-3 fatty acid supplements, and avoiding allergens help eliminate seasonal allergies in your four-legged friend.
Dealing with seasonal allergies can be extremely challenging for you and your pet, as the symptoms tend to flare up during certain times of the year. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce seasonal allergies in dogs, some of which are mentioned below:
One of the best ways to get rid of seasonal allergies in your doggie is to start an anti-inflammatory steroid treatment. This medication reduces inflammation and relieves itchiness caused by allergies. Your veterinarian could recommend the following drugs.
Finding an effective anti-inflammatory steroid that works for your dog is essential because some can be more powerful than others. The dosage should also be monitored regularly, as too much may cause side effects:
- Increased appetite
- Increased blood sugar level
- Increased thirst
- Respiratory tract infection
- Urinary tract infection
- Weak immune system
Treatment using antihistamines is another popular option for treating dogs’ seasonal allergies. Antihistamines work by blocking the receptors responsible for triggering allergic reactions.
Some popular antihistamines used to treat seasonal allergies will include:
- Astemizole (Hismanal)
- Clemastine (Tavist)
- Trimeprazine (Temaril-P, Vanectyl-P)
These medications often take several weeks to work but help reduce itching and sneezing from allergies.
Always seek the appropriate dosage and medication risk from your veterinarian before administering antihistamines to your pet.
Allergy shots are often recommended for the long-term relief of seasonal allergies in dogs. The goal of allergy injections is to rehabilitate your pup’s immune system. However, only a qualified vet should administer allergy shots to dogs. Moreover, the entire process may take several months before taking full effect.
Shampoo therapy can also help treat seasonal allergies in our furry companions. Specialty shampoos with medication ingredients can quickly relieve itching and irritation from allergies. But first, find a shampoo specifically for dogs with allergies and follow the instructions closely.
In addition to these treatments, it is essential to try and avoid allergens as much as possible when trying to eliminate seasonal allergies in dogs. Allergens, such as dust mites, pollen, grass, and mold spores, can travel long distances.
Keeping the house clean and free of allergens can also prevent allergic reactions. The following list provides specific actions you can take to reduce allergen exposure in your home:
- Clean floors and carpets weekly.
- Give your furry friend durable, washable chew toys instead of fluffy toys.
- Reduce humidity by using a recirculation mode on air conditioners.
- Use air conditioning rather than opening windows during high-pollen seasons.
- Use dehumidifiers to avoid mold in kitchens, bathrooms, and other wet areas.
- Use washable area rugs and floors made of hardwood or linoleum.
- Vacuum soft surfaces, like carpets and couches, regularly.
- Wash your canine’s bedding once a week in hot, soapy water and use a hot cycle on the dryer to kill dust mites.
Fatty Acid Supplements
Adding omega-3 fatty acid supplements to your canine’s diet can be beneficial in treating seasonal allergies. Moreover, omega-3 fatty acids are known for their anti-inflammatory properties and may help reduce inflammation associated with allergies.
What Happens If Dog Allergies Go Untreated?
Untreated dog allergies can lead to severe health conditions. Allergy symptoms can worsen, leading to skin inflammation, secondary infections from repeated scratching or licking, and chronic dermatitis from disrupting the skin barrier.
How Do You Fix Seasonal Allergies In Dogs?
The above severities can be frustrating and uncomfortable for your dogs and you. Fortunately, there are many natural remedies available that can help to relieve a dog’s allergy symptoms:
Aloe vera is a natural remedy to help soothe your pooch’s itchy skin when they’re suffering from allergies. Apply aloe vera directly to your dog’s skin. Its anti-inflammatory, antifungal, and antibacterial properties make it ideal for treating allergies.
Coconut oil is another natural remedy that can relieve your furry friends’ allergies. Its lauric acid, antimicrobial and antifungal properties, and fatty acids help keep the immune system healthy. Coconut oil also helps moisturize the skin and reduce redness, itching, and irritation from allergies.
If your pup suffers from allergies, you may want to switch their regular shampoo for an all-natural hypoallergenic option. These shampoos are free of chemicals and fragrances that can irritate the skin and cause allergic reactions in some dogs.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has antifungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties, which can help reduce allergy-related itching. It also helps balance the pH of your dog’s skin and fur, making it less hospitable for allergens. Mix an equal amount of purified water and apple cider vinegar and clean the affected area using a cotton ball or cloth.
Nose, Skin, And Paw Balms
Natural balms and creams can soothe itchy noses, skin, or paws. Balms not only soothe your furry friend’s feet but also prevent dogs from licking their paws. These balms mostly contain natural ingredients that help relieve itching from allergies.
- Aloe vera
- Coconut oil
- Shea butter
Certain mushrooms have been shown to boost dogs’ immune systems and help protect them from allergic reactions. Add these to your four-legged furry friend’s food as a supplement. The following list includes some immune-boosting mushrooms:
- Agaricus blazei Murrill mushroom or “Cogumelo do Sol”
- Lion’s mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus)
- Reishi mushroom (Ganoderma lingzhi)
- Shiitake mushroom
- Turkey tail mushroom (Trametes versicolor)
Vitamin E And Fish Oil Combo
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps reduce inflammation and itching caused by allergies. Administer it either directly or through supplements such as fish oil. The combination of vitamin E and fish oil has been shown to help reduce canine allergic reactions.
Oatmeal baths are another great way to soothe skin irritation due to allergies. You have to use unflavored blended oatmeal for this remedy. Mix three cups of unflavored oats in a warm bathtub.
Allow the oatmeal and water to meld, then let your dog soak for 10 to 20 minutes. An oatmeal bath not only assists in reducing symptoms of canine allergies but also softens and brightens your four-legged friend’s coat.
Can I Give A Dog Benadryl For Allergies?
Yes, you can give your doggie Benadryl for allergies. It is an antihistamine commonly used to treat mild-to-moderate allergy symptoms. These include itching, hives, sneezing, coughing, anaphylactic reactions, and runny noses and eyes in our canine buddies.
However, not all dog breeds are the same, so some dogs may react differently or be more prone to allergies than others. The following section examines some dog breeds more likely to suffer from allergies.
Which Dog Breeds Are Most Susceptible To Seasonal Allergies?
The American Pit Bull Terrier, Brussels Griffon, Boxer, Maltese, Golden Retriever, Cocker Spaniel, Bull Terrier, Bichon Frise, German Shepherd, and Labrador Retriever are more sensitive to seasonal allergies.
Seasonal allergies can affect any dog breed, but certain breeds may be more prone to developing allergies than others. Let’s discuss some breeds known for being particularly sensitive to environmental allergens!
American Pit Bull Terrier
American Pit Bull Terriers are known to be one of the breeds prone to seasonal allergies. Their dense coats trap moisture and pollutants, causing allergic reactions.
Additionally, American Pit Bull Terriers usually have sensitive stomachs that quickly react to certain foods, such as corn, beef, rice, and wheat. Therefore, food allergens are fairly common in American Pit Bulls Terriers.
The Brussels Griffon is one of the breeds most susceptible to seasonal allergies. The breed’s small size makes it particularly vulnerable to environmental allergens.
Their feet, abdomen, skin folds, and ears are most frequently affected. Monitor them for excessive paw-licking, face-rubbing, and recurrent ear infections.
During the spring or summer months, tree, weed, and grass pollen may trigger allergies in Boxers. In some cases, even mild dust exposure can cause an allergic reaction.
Boxers are especially prone to these allergies since they have sensitive immune systems. In addition, dog foods with high grain content, such as wheat or corn, can trigger Boxers’ allergies.
Maltese is another dog breed particularly prone to seasonal allergies. This breed’s exposure to environmental allergens, including household mildew, bug bites, and dust mites, can cause itchiness, rashes, hair loss, and other CAD symptoms.
Maltese dogs’ most common allergy symptoms include itching, rash, irritated skin, thinning hair, wheezing, and problems with the eyes, nose, or ears. Gastrointestinal issues can also be a symptom of food allergies. Finally, certain fabrics in blankets and plastics in feeding bowls can cause contact allergies.
The four main allergens affecting Golden Retrievers include contact, food, canine atopic dermatitis, and fleas. Pollen, dust, fleas, mold, grasses, and weeds can cause skin irritation. Soy, beef, dairy, wheat, and several types of poultry are common food allergens.
Seasonal allergies also affect Cocker Spaniels. Food, contact, and inhalant allergies are the three most typical types. Itching in the Cocker Spaniel’s ears and paws is a classic symptom of food allergies. Common allergens include pollen and substances like plastic, wool, copper, sand, and synthetics.
The Bull Terrier suffers more from allergies than other dogs. The most frequent allergies in Bull Terriers are sensitive skin, contact allergies, and allergens breathed, such as chemicals, pollen, dust, and mildew.
Food and contact allergies are the most frequent allergies in Bichon Frise dogs. These small, fluffy dogs are particularly susceptible to flowers, dust, tree allergies, grass, and flea bites.
German Shepherds are among the breeds most prone to seasonal allergies. In addition, they are more prone to dietary and environmental allergies, even though skin contact allergies are very common among short-haired German Shepherds. Fleas, food allergies (including beef, poultry, maize, soy, dairy, and wheat), and pollen cause skin allergies.
Labrador Retrievers, a popular dog breed, are susceptible to seasonal allergies. For this breed, common allergies include food, fleas, contact, germs, and inhalants, and symptoms typically appear as skin issues. Common food allergies include soy, eggs, meat, maize, fish, and chicken.
By understanding the common seasonal allergies and how they affect your doggie, you can take steps to reduce their exposure and minimize their allergic reactions. In cases of severe allergies or if symptoms persist, consult a veterinarian for further treatment advice.