Jul 11, 2011 5:35 PM by Bonnie Markoff, DVM, ABVP

Handling allergies in our pets

Q: My dog keeps tearing up the side of her face. I know its an allergy, but I dont know to what. We have tried process of elemination: It is only certain parts of the year, so we figured pollen, so we did the shots. It stopped for a while then returned. Her food does not change ... I dont know what else to do.

A: It sounds like you have worked with a veterinarian on this already and I cannot give you good advice without meeting you and your dog.

I can tell you that at Animal Care Clinic, our typical plan for treating inhaled allergies involves the following: Making 100% sure fleas, mites or food are not a part of the problem; omega-3 fatty acid supplements; regular emptying of anal glands if they are a problem; regular shampoo therapy - usually weekly; topical leave-on rinses when needed; complete control of ear infections if they exist; control of all secondary infections - bacterial and yeast; a combination of antihistamines and immune suppressant medications that might include Temaril-P, hydroxyzine, prednisone, cyclosporine or others.

If she truly has allergies, they will not be cured. You must look for a program that maintains her in a comfortable state without causing side effects. Most of our clients with allergic dogs become very good at knowing how to manage things themselves at home, but it takes some work up front. We would be happy to help you!



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