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Quincy, MA 02169
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Pet Allergies

Pet Allergies

If your pet frequently itches, scratches or bites his skin, he may be suffering from allergies. The same allergies that affect humans can also affect pets. However, rather than experiencing congestion, a runny nose, or itchy eyes, pet allergy symptoms are typically related to itchy skin. Our South Shore veterinarian understands just how painful and uncomfortable allergies can be for pets. At Willard Veterinary Clinic, we provide comprehensive pet skin care to provide immediate relief for pet allergies and to reduce their recurrence.

South Shore Animal Hospital Treats Pet Allergies with Pet Skin Care

In general, pet allergies can be broken down into two main categories: atopic (caused by skin irritation) and food allergies. If your pet is itchy during the spring, summer, or fall, for example, he may be suffering from environmental allergens. If your pet’s symptoms persist throughout the year, these allergies may be due to a dietary sensitivity. Flea allergies are one of the most common types affecting pets; in fact, a single fleabite can trigger an allergic reaction lasting for up to one week.

The first step to treating pet allergies is to identify the specific allergen trigger. Atopic skin allergies may be caused by grasses, pollens, dust mites and many of the same substances that trigger an allergic reaction in humans. In some cases, systematically eliminating allergens from your pet’s environment can help identify the specific trigger. Due to the complexity of identifying specific allergens, however, in most cases skin or blood tests will be necessary to identify the specific allergen. Allergy testing is also important since many pets may be allergic to more than one substance. The presence of a second allergen can exacerbate symptoms; a comprehensive treatment plan is necessary to manage these multiple allergens. Once one or more allergens are identified, our South Shore veterinarian will create a custom treatment plan to help minimize allergen exposure and treat your pet’s symptoms.

Pet food ingredients are also a common trigger for allergies in pets. Food allergies are often triggered by common protein and carbohydrate sources; less frequently, preservatives or other ingredients may also be the cause for your pet’s allergy. Our South Shore veterinarian offers specialized testing to determine the specific cause for food-related pet allergies.

Since pets naturally scratch and itch their bodies, identifying pet allergies can be difficult. Pets with allergies, especially dogs, often have problems with their ears. The ear canals may become itchy and inflamed as part of a generalized allergic response. The ear canal can also become infected with bacteria and yeast. Prompt allergy treatment is essential to providing symptom relief. Without prompt intervention, secondary skin infections may develop. For example, pets that frequently bite or chew on their skin create a warm, moist area that is susceptible to secondary bacterial infections, complicating the treatment process.

Pet Allergy Treatments

At Quincy Animal Hospital, our South Shore veterinarian understands just how incredibly painful and unpleasant pet allergies can be. While some scratching is natural, a pet that frequently itches, scratches or bites at their skin is likely suffering from allergies. While human allergy symptoms include sneezing, congestion and watery eyes, pets with allergies typically suffer from painfully itchy skin. In fact, without proper treatment, this scratching and itching can leave the skin raw and susceptible to secondary bacterial infections. If you suspect that your pet may be suffering from allergies, our South Shore veterinarian provides specialized pet skin care to diagnose and treat this painful problem.

Pet Services in Milton Include Pet Allergy Treatment & Pet Skin Care

Pet allergies can be triggered by a variety of different causes, ranging from household cleaning products to fleas. Initially, it may be difficult for pet owners to distinguish between normal itching and an allergic reaction. Allergy symptoms include frequent itching of the face, ears, groin and paws to the point of rawness. Dogs may lose patches of their fur and cats may repeatedly vomit up hairballs. If you suspect your pet has allergies, our South Shore veterinarian may recommend intradermal testing (IDT), an allergy skin test that will evaluate your pet’s sensitivity to different environmental allergens.

Fleas are the most common trigger for allergic dermatitis; a single fleabite can cause a painful allergic reaction lasting for several days. Flea allergy symptoms include small bumps covering the pet’s rear and inner thighs. Pollen, mites, mold, dander, and insects are also common triggers. Once the specific trigger has been identified, our South Shore veterinarian works closely with pet owners to reduce a pet’s exposure to the offending allergen and manage the allergic response.

Just like with human allergies, a pet’s allergy can never be 100% “cured”. Our primary treatment goal is to reduce the severity of your pet’s allergic reaction. For most pets, we are able to achieve an 80 to 90 percent reduction in allergy symptoms through a combination of allergy shots and/or oral medication. Our secondary treatment goal is to prevent secondary skin infections caused by excessive itching, biting and scratching. Frequent biting of the skin, for example, leaves it raw, moist and vulnerable to bacterial infection. Dander, scabs, or red bumps are signs of a serious pet allergy problem that needs prompt treatment.

In addition to treating pet allergies, our Quincy animal hospital also treats other pet skin conditions, including mange, ringworm and feline acne. Like pet allergies, these skin conditions will not simply “go away” on their own; they require prompt pet skin care to relieve your pet’s pain.

Pet skin care is an important part of our pet services in Milton. Our Quincy animal hospital takes pet allergies very seriously; our South Shore veterinarian is committed to relieving your pet’s pain as quickly and safely as possible. To learn more about our pet skin care services, schedule an appointment with our South Shore veterinarian today!

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