Pollen allergies in dogs
Pollen allergy in dogs is not an entirely uncommon problem. However, there are many owners who don't know that their dogs suffer from pollen allergies.
Since pollen is everywhere, it's difficult to prevent the allergy and the symptoms it causes. Pollen allergy is seasonal just like in humans. Even for dogs, it takes a while to develop the allergy. Most often, airborne allergies debut when the dog is between one and three years old.
Symptoms of pollen allergy in dogs
- Itching in the face, groin, armpits, paws but there is great variation
- The dog may lick, gnaw or scratch excessively due to the itching
- Less common symptoms are runny nose or watery eyes
Investigation of pollen allergy takes time
If you suspect that your dog is allergic to pollen, you should contact your vet. To find out if it is an allergy, the vet must do an examination of your dog. Diagnosis is made via medical history, symptoms, exclusion of other causes of the symptoms and allergy tests. Allergy testing is done either through a prick test or a blood test.
Finding out which type of pollen the dog reacts to means that in some difficult cases it is possible to vaccinate against the allergy. In those cases, a vaccine called hyposensi vaccine is specially manufactured for that particular dog.
Treatment of dogs with pollen allergies
In addition to the vaccine mentioned above, and other allergy medicines, cortisone can be given in the case of a confirmed pollen allergy. It can be given periodically or on a more regular basis, either in tablet form or local treatment with, for example, a spray. The treatment is individual depending on the dog's symptoms.
3 tips for relieving the allergy symptoms
- Try bathing your dog with an anti-itch or moisturising medicated shampoo to reduce the itching, and also reduce the amount of pollen your dog is exposed to.
- Dry your dog's paws after walks during the pollen season to reduce their contact with allergens from grass, weeds, flowers or trees.
- Clean your home at least once a week to minimise pollen
About the Author
Catarina obtained a veterinary degree in 1993 and a degree for specialist competence in dog and cat diseases in 2006.More articles from Catarina Eliasson
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