Dogs are just as susceptible to allergies as human being. Unfortunately they don’t have the benefit of going to the store and picking up allergy relief medication. All they can do is lick, chew or scratch at the hot spots, leaving marks on their skin. If your dog or puppy starts to show any signs of skin allergy, the vet should be consulted. However, there are many things you can do to avoid these issues from cropping up in the first place.
Skin allergies in dogs will appear in a few different forms. Allergies themselves are most frequently related to flea bites, food allergies and inhalants such as dust or pollens. The skin will often grow irritated and red. Swelling may occur but will most often be a result of excess scratching or biting by your dog.
If your dog starts to lose hair as a result of the reaction or gets an ear infection, it might be a long term food allergy related to their food – a common problem that occurs in many dogs that eat processed dog foods.
Any dog can come down with skin allergies. There is no particular indicator that makes a single dog more likely to get allergy. However, dogs that are fed dry food too early do have a higher rate of food allergies while short haired dogs are more likely to suffer from skin contact allergies. Additionally, dogs that are bred for water sports or hunting tend to be less susceptible to flea bite allergies and moisture issues, though this is not exclusive.
Skin problems can be avoided in a number of ways. Make sure your dog is given flea medication on a regular basis. This is important not just for flea bite allergies, but for avoiding potential sickness from tick bites or other parasites that will latch on to your dog when they go outside.
Additionally, avoid feeding your dog foods with too many grain fillers. Of the grains, rice is the safest while corn, soy and wheat all directly linked to allergens that dogs can develop. Processed meats can also cause food allergies. Table scraps should be avoided as much as possible.
If your dog starts to show signs of skin problems for any reason, see your vet. They will likely take blood tests and possibly put your dog on an elimination diet to see changes and reaction in your dog’s condition. Very often, basic nutritional changes can be all a dog needs to get better.