allergy-and-skin-problems

Allergies

Cat & Dog Allergies in Colorado Springs, CO Relieving the Itch

Allergies can be tough on our pets, and seeing them uncomfortable can be tough on you! Allergies in dogs and cats often cause skin conditions, particularly itchiness and irritation. To relieve the itch, cats and dogs will bite, scratch, and chew at their skin… which can damage the skin barrier and lead to infection. Cat and dog allergies in Colorado Springs, CO are most common in the spring and fall, but some can last through the summer as well. At our animal hospital in Colorado Springs, we’re familiar with cat and dog allergies and we know how to treat them to get your pet the relief they deserve!

Is your pet scratching themselves raw?
It may be allergies! Let’s get them relief.

Symptoms of Allergies in Dogs & Cats

How do you know if your dog or cat has allergies? There’s no single symptom that points to allergies, and unfortunately, many of the allergies that occur could also be indicative of another condition. Therefore, it’s essential to bring your pet into your vet for further testing if notice any of the following:

  • Excessive itching, biting, and licking at the skin
  • Chewing at paws
  • Red, irritated looking skin
  • Alopecia (hair loss), usually around the face, neck, belly, and armpits
  • Odor from the skin
  • Frequent ear infections
  • Overgrooming (cats)
  • Vomiting/diarrhea (in the case of food allergies)
  • Runny nose and eyes

Possible Allergens for Dogs & Cats in Colorado Springs, CO

Cats and dogs can be allergic to many of the same things we are, and allergens may include:

  • Flower, grass, and tree pollens
  • Mold and mold spores
  • Dust and dust mites
  • Flea bites
  • Cleaning items
  • Perfumes/air fresheners
  • Certain fabrics (usually synthetic)
  • Food ingredients (pork, beef, chicken, eggs, dairy, etc.)

Diagnosing Pet Allergies

Allergy symptoms can sometimes be indicative of other underlying conditions that could be more serious. Therefore, we’ll first run several diagnostic tests to rule these out including comprehensive blood work and skin scrapings. In addition to in-house testing, we can also take a blood sample to send to an outside lab for allergy testing. This test will tell us the exact substance to which your pet is allergic, which may allow us to form an allergy shot that helps reduce your pet’s sensitivity to the allergen.

Managing Cat & Dog Allergies in Colorado Springs

After we rule out any other conditions, we can start forming a management plan for your pet’s allergies. Since each pet is unique, it may take a few different tries to see which treatment option works best for them.

Options may include:

  • Cytopoint (an injection for dogs that controls the itch for 4-8 weeks)
  • Apoquel (a daily tablet for dogs)
  • Atopica (a daily tablet for dogs and topical for cats)
  • Immunotherapy treatment (helps reduce your pet’s sensitivity to the allergen; formed from an allergy test)
  • Topical creams and medicated shampoos
  • Flea prevention (in the case of flea allergy dermatitis)
  • Antihistamines
  • Antibiotics and antifungals for secondary infections
  • Food elimination diet for suspected food allergies
  • And more