Skin allergies in dogs and cats can be produced by fleas, inhaled allergens, and/or food. These culprits could be the ones making your pet scratch, itch, chew, lick, scoot, shake ears, rub face, etc.
Make sure you step-up your flea control during flea season. Flea season occurs year-round in South Florida, but Spring and Fall are usually the worse seasons. Use topical monthly solutions directly on the skin, like Frontline TriTak or Revolution or Advantage Multi. Or there is a monthly oral chewable product known as Nexgard and an every three month chewable known as Bravecto. Bathe weekly and apply or administer your choice of product as directed. Use Capstar (instant flea killer) tablet if needed for any adult fleas seen in between treatments. Don’t forget to treat all pets in the household and to also treat the environment (home and yard). Make sure you check labels and only use products as directed. Watch for tapeworms appearing in your pet's stool after a flea infestation.
Inhaled allergies can be tested for by performing a simple blood test on your pet and also through skin testing by a veterinary dermatologist. Inhaled allergies can be from pollen, grasses, weeds, trees, dust mites, and molds. You may want to take advantage of the Allergy Blood Testing we offer through Heska Labs. Your pet would be tested for flea allergy and for many other allergens specific to our region. You would then know what your pet is allergic to and be able to take the necessary precautions/treatments. Based on the results, you might also consider immunotherapy (now available in easy to use allergy oral drops) to counteract the allergic reaction your pet is experiencing.
Food allergies can be also tested for with the help of a similar blood test, along with implementing a hypoallergenic food trial for 4 months, and observing the response to the new diet. Remember, some pets can have combination allergies and can be allergic to more than one allergen.
If you have any questions, please call Dr. Yolanda at 954-850-9786.