Red, itchy eyes. Frequent sneezes. Runny noses. Skin rash.
How do I know if my pet has allergies? It’s one of the most common questions we receive and we’ll aim to answer it in this post. Pets can have allergies just like people do. It’s quite common in both dogs and cats, but it can cause them a lot of discomfort. Because of this, it’s important to know the signs of allergies in pets as well as what triggers pet allergies so you can get your pet the help they need. In this blog post, we’ll look at five signs that can help you determine if your pet may have allergies. Keep reading to learn more and to find out when to visit your veterinarian.
Common Signs of Allergies in Pets
There are a few common signs of allergies in pets. Take a look at these signs of allergies in dogs and signs of allergies in cats. If anything stands out, it may be time to make an appointment with your veterinarian.
1. Itchy, Red or Watery Eyes
One of the most common signs of allergies in dogs and cats is itchy, red or watery eyes. If your pet’s eyes are frequently irritated, it may be due to allergies. Allergies can cause inflammation in the eyes, which leads to itchiness, and eyes may causebecomecause irritationirritatedirritation if scratched. If your pet experiences this often, schedule an appointment with your vet.
2. Frequent Coughing and/or Sneezing
Many pet owners think it’s cute when their pet sneezes, but if it happens frequently it could be a sign of allergies. Allergies can cause inflammation in the airways, which leads to coughing, sneezing and even runny noses. If left untreated, your pet’s airways can become congested and it can be more difficult for them to breathe. If your pet experiences this often, take it seriously and get them to the vet.
3. Skin Issues
If you notice your cat or dog scratching a lot, it could be due to skin issues. An itchy face, belly, groin, rear, tail or side could be from an allergic reaction caused by atopic dermatitis, food allergies or flea allergies.
In addition to itchy skin, look for other issues such as excessive licking, red and inflamed skin, and hot spots. Excessive licking can lead to hair loss, bald spots and raw skin. Irritated skin can turn red and feel warm to the touch. Hot spots are similar, but constant licking can trap moisture, causing the skin to expand and tear. If you see any signs of skin irritation, take your pet to the vet to determine the cause of any skin allergies. Leaving them untreated can cause additional issues.
4. Ear Infections
If your pet is frequently shaking their head or scratching their ears, they may have an ear infection. Ear infections are often caused by allergies, leading to inflammation and an overproduction of wax and bacteria. If left untreated, ear infections can cause permanent damage to your pet’s ears. If you think your pet has an ear infection, take them to the vet right away.
5. Gastrointestinal Issues
If your pet is vomiting or has diarrhea, it could be due to gastrointestinal issues such as food allergies or sensitivities. This can cause inflammation in the digestive system, which leads to vomiting and/or diarrhea. If your pet experiences these types of issues, get them to the vet.
Now that you know the common signs of allergies in pets, let’s take a look at a few common factors that can cause these reactions.
Fleas are one of the most common causes of allergies in cats and dogs. A single bite from a flea can cause intense irritation, itching, and scratching. If your pet is allergic to fleas, they may have red, inflamed skin that is hot to the touch. They may also have bald spots from excessive licking and scratching. If you think your pet has a flea allergy, take them to the vet right away for treatment.
Environmental elements can cause allergies in your pet. The most common environmental allergy is atopic dermatitis, a skin allergy that can be caused by anything from pollen and mold to dust mites. If your pet has atopic dermatitis, they may have itchy, red, and inflamed skin. They may also have bald spots from excessive licking and scratching. If you think your pet has atopic dermatitis, make an appointment with your vet. They can prescribe medications or treatments to help soothe your pet’s skin.
Food allergies are another common allergy in dogs and cats. Pets can be allergic to any type of food, but the most common allergies are to lactose, foods with additives, a diet with too much fat, too much of one nutrient, and poisonous foods such as chocolate and onions. If your pet has a food allergy, they may experience gastrointestinal issues such as vomiting and diarrhea. They may also have skin issues such as swelling, excessive licking, red and inflamed skin, and hot spots. If you think your pet has a food allergy, get them to the vet right away. Your veterinarian can help determine the particular food allergy affecting your pet and get them on a diet that will make them and their bodies happy.
Seasonal allergies, or allergic rhinitis, can affect pets just like they do humans. Pets can be allergic to anything in seasonal environments, from pollen and ragweed to dust mites and more. If your pet has seasonal allergies, they may have itchy and watery eyes. They may also have a runny nose paired with frequent sneezing and coughing. If you suspect your pet has seasonal allergies, make an appointment with your vet to get them treatment.
Allergies in pets can be caused by a variety of factors, from fleas and food to seasonal allergies. If your pet is showing any signs of allergies, it’s important to take them to the vet right away. With the help of your veterinarian, you can determine the cause of your pet’s allergies and get them the treatment they need to feel their best.