Just like humans, pets can get allergies. Allergies are an immune response to certain environmental or food-related triggers. This happens when the immune system sees something as a threat. Both dogs and cats can develop allergies at any time, even to something they have been previously exposed to for some time without problems. Pets can be allergic to many of the same things that their human counterparts are allergic to. The following is a list of common allergens, however it is not exhaustive.
Again, this is not a complete list of potential allergens, but it's a good look at what your pet could be allergic to.
How can you tell if your pet is having an allergic reaction? Common signs are excessive itching around the head, face and ears, swelling in the eyes, redness, scaling and flaking in the skin. There may or may not be vomiting and diarrhea. Sneezing, chewing and licking are also common symptoms. Scratching and chewing are often attributed to fleas, but even if your pet does have fleas, they may still have allergies.
The first step is diagnosis. Your veterinarian can rule out other causes for the symptoms. It may take some time to determine what your pet is allergic to. You can take precautions to limit your dog or cat's exposure to allergens. If food is the problem, you will have to begin feeding your pet special food, or start an elimination diet to determine the allergy and remove it from the diet.
Our Katy veterinarian can also prescribe topical and oral medications to help with symptoms. If your pet is showing the signs and symptoms of allergies, it's best to bring him in for an exam. Call 281-398-1551 to schedule an appointment or to learn more. At Katy Area Veterinary Medical Group, we treat your pet like family. We are accepting new patients in our clinic, and we would love to see you!
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