Pets like Dogs and Cats are constantly exposed to foreign organisms and foreign substances. Those substances can cause severe allergic reactions to cats and dogs. It is necessary to be aware in favour of our pet, to prevent and avoid the complications that can arise. Allergies in Pets are common and they will increase in the coming years.
Cats and Dogs who have allergies feel itchy. It is because the histamine is released whenever their immune system attacks the offending allergens.
The most often areas of the skin and body of cats and dogs are ears, eyes, feet, tail, between the toes, groin, armpits and around the anus.
The constant itching causes head shaking, feet biting, face rubbing, and bottom scooting.
Sometimes pets also bite their tails or scratch their bellies. Cats, for example, bite and clean themselves so long until they have no more hair left only the skin. This is called bald spots ( alopecia) and it affects 60% of the cats. Mainly it comes from food allergies.
What are Allergies?
Allergy is a reaction to a substance that irritates the immune system. Pets can and will show allergic symptoms as soon as their Immune system recognises a certain everyday substance or allergens as an Invader or dangerous.
There are many allergens in our environment, and a lot of them are very common and harmless to most animals, but as it is the same as in us human there will be a certain percentage of pets who react allergically to certain substances in the Environment and Food.
If you discover that your Pet has an allergic condition, get an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as you can. Not every Veterinarian will prescribe the anti-allergy drugs. Nowadays there are safer ways to relieve your pet’s discomfort and symptoms from the allergic reaction.
It is essential that your Vet is looking into the root cause of the allergic reaction. The Problem with the pharmaceutical drug is it is a short-term fix what can then become a long-term health problem for your pet. On top of it, most drugs have a significant side effect on the health of your pet.
Allergies in pets, are common and affects both of the domestic species. Allergies can be caused by external parasites like fleas, ticks, lice, scabies, mites, etc.
One of the more common ones is fleas, as they bite the animal and inject a tiny amount of saliva sufficient enough to sensitise the animal to itching and makes your pet uncomfortable for many weeks, even when the flea is already dead.
One single tiny flea can cause and trigger the whole process to an allergic reaction.
There are different products to control those insects and parasites. You can get flea collars or you use aerosol sprays.
You can also use the essential oils like lemongrass to clean the area where your pet is resting or sleeping. ( please check out our other post for essentials oils for pets)
•If you suspect that your pet has a flea problem, I would recommend that you with a comb your pet at least once a day with a flea comb. Keep this up every day during flea season.
Use a white Towel or other light coloured cloth, to see what is coming off your pet during combing. The Flea ‘dirt’ (actually called flea faeces) looks like real dirt, only when suspended in a little rubbing alcohol or water it will dissolve and release a red colour.
This red colour is the blood from the flea and allows you to differentiate between real dirt and flea dirt
•Give your Pet often a Bath. A nice soothing relaxing bath will help your Pet with the itching and at the same time kill any fleas on your Pet.
It helps to heal the skin irritation, it makes your pet feel comfortable. Please be aware that you can not use the shampoo from yourself on your Pet. In the pet stores are special products to use for bathing and shampoo your pet.
Clean Pets are less attractive to fleas.
Please pick a non-grain ( no oatmeal) herbal shampoo.
•There are pretty good all-natural pest repellent on the market like natural flea and tick collars.
Natural flea and tick repellents. Please do yourself and your pet a favour to get them during flea in tick season.
The start of the season is normally when the first days in spring are warm.
Especially in the Summer season, they are a good treat to keep you and your pet safe from ticks and fleas.•For Pets with serious cases of flea allergy dermatitis consult your vet for a less hazardous drug with less side effect for the health of your pet.
If your Pet has an Allergy to what it is eating then it may show itself with different symptoms, such as an upset stomach or digestive disorder ( gas, vomiting, diarrhoea, etc. )
Most of the time your pet has been eating the same food for a period of time and never showed signs, there is a good chance that your pet developed this allergy to the food over time.
On the Contrary what you been probably informed and believed is pets need diversity in their diet just like humans. Pets are sensitive to the meat that is loaded with antibiotics and hormones, chemically laced protein.
With this said Pets tend to tolerate it over a period of time, and eventually, when the Body can not detox anymore the signs come out with different allergies.
Even grains and other carbohydrates added to foods or snacks can cause a reaction. The best thing you can do for your pet is to work with your holistic Vet to develop and tailor an allergy-free diet.
This helps to pinpoint the source and cause of the problem. Normally after 3 months your pet has cleared the allergic substances, detoxifies and cleans out cellular debris.
After the 3 months, new foods are slowly reintroduced into your Pets diet. Always one at a time to see and monitor the response of your pet. Once the body is detoxified and the pet is again healthy it is not uncommon for pets to re-incorporate previous food problems or clean proteins.
• A good holistic vet will suggest and recommend you natural supplements for your pet to detox its body from time to time.
This will help to keep the allergy and the immune system in place during and after the treatment.
•For your Pet to be optimally healthy which includes avoiding food sensitivities and resistance building to all types of allergies.
Feed your Pet a balanced, appropriate diet. Best recommendation is preferably raw, either homemade ( as long as it is balanced) or commercial. Rotating the protein sources your Pet eats is extremely important, as it is strictly limiting or eliminating grains.
We already covered FAD allergies and Food Allergies. But in addition to those two, there is also the environmental Allergies. Your Pet can also be allergic to an infinite variety of irritants in the environment.
For example Ragweed, grasses and pollens. Also, the indoor irritants can cause allergies like mould, dust mites, cleaning chemicals, fabric like wool and cotton.
General Rule applies to a Pet when being allergic to something inside your home, the symptoms will be the whole year around. If acting to something outside that could be a seasonal allergy problem what occurs every season. The Immune system of a pet is partly generic, so it can actually inherit environmental allergies.
I do not need to tell you that it is very important to find the root cause of this type of allergies.
As the rule is the more the pet is exposed to the irritant, the more will his sensitivity and allergic reaction grow. Here are some suggestions to find the problem and hopefully resolve the environmental irritant.
• Your Pets indoor environment should be cleaned up daily. Don’t allow smoking around your pet. Use non–toxic cleaning products.
• Important gesture towards your pet, the drinking water of your pet should be high quality and should not contain fluoride, heavy metals or other contaminants.
•Don’t over vaccinate or medicate your pet.
It will not help its immune system. Did you know too many vaccines can send your pet into overdrive? An overactive Immune system will set the ground for an allergic reaction.
Be careful with Antibiotics. They wipe out any good bacteria right along with the bad bacteria.
You will kill the probiotics of your pets GI track. We all know how important good gut – bacteria is for the overall well-being of pets.
Avoid Steroid therapy. It is a common use for pets with allergies to put them on a Steroid therapy.
These drugs turn off the immune system so that the immune system is not creating the allergic response. It only helps to relieve the symptoms but not the root cause.
When you stop the therapy the problem comes back. The side effects those drugs have is a big damage to a pet’s health.
There is no rule on how many times you can bathe your pet. ( please don’t overdo it and don’t soak or drown your pet.) Be a responsible cat or dog owner.
If it helps to relieve the itchiness and inflammation than give this treat to your pet.
“Please do not use your (human) shampoo”. Use strictly Pet shampoo.
If you can see your dog is irritated and itchy after a walk check for ticks. ( to avoid flea and tick collar)
If the feet are itchy between the paws than wash the feet with water as the chances are, that the allergen is coming inside your pet’s paws.
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