Pet Allergies

Allergy season almost never ends in Central Texas. Dr. Veronica Martin discusses symptoms to look for and possible causes of allergies in your pets.

Austin, TX is not just an allergy hot spot for humans. Our canine family members are, unfortunately, often affected as well. However, canine allergies tend to manifest differently from
the typical runny nose and sneezing that we are used to. While these symptoms can happen in our pups as well, it is more common for allergies to present as skin and ear issues. You may
have noticed your dog licking their paws, having a red belly, or scratching at their ears. These are all classic signs of allergies, which may be due to a variety of things.

When we think of allergies in dogs, we can categorize them into 3 types: environmental, food,
and parasitic. Unfortunately, environmental allergies are responsible for the majority of the
cases we see. Environmental allergens can include pollens, foliage, or any other part of the
environment that may lead to a reaction. More rarely, allergies can be secondary to the type of
food your pup is eating. Typically, a food allergy is targeted to the protein source within the
food: chicken, beef, salmon, etc. It is extremely rare for a canine to have an allergy to the grains
within a diet. Lastly, allergic reactions can occur secondary to external parasites such as fleas
and mites. Luckily, we do not have to worry about this type of allergy as long as your pet
remains on monthly parasite prevention.

So, what do we do for our dogs experiencing these symptoms? Unfortunately, there is not a
cure for allergies, however, we do have great tools we can use to manage symptoms. Apoquel
(oral medication) and Crytopoint (monthly injectable) use a monoclonal antibody technology
which works to block different points in the itch cycle associated with allergies. This helps
reduce redness and inflammation that is often seen in these animals. In some cases, these
medications need to be used long term for control of allergy symptoms. We can also utilize
medicated shampoos and mousses to help support healthy skin and coat. For our food allergy
pups, there are great prescription diets which have specialized protein, designed so that the
immune system will not react against it.
If your pup is experiencing any symptoms of allergies (licking paws/belly, scratching skin,
scratching ears) we recommend scheduling an exam to get them checked out today!

What's Next

  • 1

    Call us or schedule an appointment online.

  • 2

    Meet with a doctor for an initial exam.

  • 3

    Put a plan together for your pet.