Disclaimer: This blog post is not intended to be medical advice. If you think your dog may be suffering from allergies or having a severe allergic reaction we advise you to take them to your nearest qualified veterinary centre for a checkup.
Allergies can have a significant impact on your dog's quality of life. As a sufferer of seasonal hay-fever myself, I know how awful allergies can make you feel. Dogs can suffer from a variety of different allergies, including skin, food, and seasonal allergies. Common allergy symptoms may include itchy, irritated skin, chronic ear infections, gastrointestinal symptoms, runny eyes, and sneezing or coughing.
The correct treatment for your dog's allergies will depend on what they are having an allergic reaction too. As such, it may be worthwhile doing an allergy test for your dog. The best treatment for allergies is avoidance, however this isn't always possible, particularly for environmental allergens. Therefore, here are 5 things you can do to help your dog deal with their allergies. Whilst they may not completely cure your dogs allergies, following these suggestions will provide them with some relief.
1. Wash Their Bed Frequently
If your dog suffers from environmental allergies such as pollen or dust mites, then it is important wash their bed frequently, preferably twice a week. This will remove the build up of allergens on their bed. If your dog's bed isn't already 100% cotton then you should also consider investing in a cotton dog bed as these are known to be the best for controlling allergies. This may also help your own allergies if you suffer from dog allergies. We recommend hand washing dog beds in warm water with a high-quality natural detergent that will be gentle on your dog's skin. If you think your dog suffers from outdoor allergies than we recommend that you don't dry their bed in the sun outdoors, and put it through the dryer instead.
2. Allergy Medication
Allergy medications such as antihistamines can help reduce and control your dog's allergy symptoms. It is best to consult your veterinarian to discuss the various medications available on the market, and to develop a treatment plan for your dog. We advise against giving your dog your own antihistamines as there are a huge number of different antihistamines available, and your vet will know the best one to prescribe to you dog based on their symptoms. Your vet may also consider oral steroids if the antihistamines aren't effective, or allergy shots.
3. High Quality Dog Food
If your dogs symptoms primarily occur after eating, they may be suffering from a food allergy or sensitivity, and their food may be the culprit. There are plenty of low quality dog foods on the market that contain a high amount of preservatives and additives that may be causing your dogs allergic reaction. The best way to treat a food allergy is to work with your vet and conduct an elimination diet. By testing a variety of different dog foods, you should be able to find a product that your dog isn't allergic to.
4. Wash Their Toys
As with your dogs bed, their plush toys are also an area where environmental allergens such as dust mites can build up. Therefore it is recommended to also regularly wash their toys, in particular their plush toys. It can also be helpful to dry out their plush toys in the sun to prevent the build up of mould due to the moisture from the saliva.
5. Natural Skin Treatments
If you dog is suffering from skin allergies, and has hives or itchy skin, then it is important to keep their coat and skin clean. The best way to do this is to regularly wash them with a hypoallergenic shampoo. This is particularly important after a walk or trip to the park. A good quality hypoallergenic dog shampoo should contain ingredients that will soothe your dogs skin, including aloe & oatmeal. Prescription shampoos can also be provided by your vet, so if your dog has skin allergies than a consult your vet and they will be able to provide a variety of options.
There you have it, 5 Ways to Relieve Your Dog's Allergies. If you have some further suggestions or ideas, let us know in the comments below!
Barket is Australia's favourite online provider of dog supplies,