Allergies in Pets
Allergic inhalant dermatitis (atopy) is the most common skin problem seen in pets in the Lawrence area. People with allergies often sneeze but allergic pets develop itchiness (pruritus) and frequently lick their paws (pedal pruritus).
Owners should be familiar with medications used in treating atopy. Long-term medications are often necessary and side effects can occur. We will be happy to discuss questions or concerns you might have.
We may recommend intradermal allergy testing (skin testing) to confirm the diagnosis. Your pet will be referred to the Veterinary Allergy and Dermatology Clinic in Kansas City.
Antihistamines are frequently used to reduce allergic reactions. For dogs with allergies, it is usually necessary to combine multiple treatment items to get them under control, such as food, shampoos, omega 3 fatty acids, and sometimes stronger medications. About one-third of atopic pets benefit from antihistamines.
What You Should Know About Over-the-Counter Antihistamine Use in Dogs and Cats by Dr. Clayton Greenway
Natural Anti-Inflammatory Medications
Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids are natural anti-inflammatory agents which may be helpful in maintaining coat and skin heath.
Medicated Shampoos and Rinses
Medicated Shampoos and Rinses soothe and hydrate your pet’s skin. Bathing also results in removal of topical allergens, bacteria and yeast. Many shampoos contain analgesics for itching relief. Cool water bathing is more relieving than warm water.
Topical Medications include cortisone, antihistamines and antibiotics, and are beneficial for your pet’s focal allergic flare ups.
Cortisone/Steroids are a widely used (and abused) class of drugs in veterinary medicine. Corticosteroids should be used cautiously as side effects can occur.
Apoquel® is an exciting new oral therapy for dogs designed to target the source of the itch. Apoquel® works for inhalant and food allergies, and can safely be used long term.
If questions, please call us at 785-841-3131.