Spotting Spring Allergies in Dogs

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It’s spring and our pups are ready to run around in the fresh, warm air, but with the changing of the seasons comes a slew of seasonal allergies, for us and our pets. Spring blooms create more airborne allergens that can trigger your dog’s allergies and lead to symptoms like sneezing, itching, and watery eyes. This article will help you figure out if your dog has any allergies, seasonal or food-related, and how best to seek treatment for them. As always, please consult your vet if any serious allergies occur! 

The allergy symptoms your pet may have are similar to the ones we look out for in humans. 

Some symptoms might include: 

  • Coughing, wheezing, or other trouble breathing
  • Runny or stuffy nose (a runny nose can also indicate that your dog is too hot, which is something else to pay attention to as the weather gets warmer!) 
  • Sneezing
  • Excessive itching or scratching, especially around their face, ears, and paws
  • Red, irritated, or watery eyes
  • Dry skin or hair loss
  • Hives
  • Upset stomach, including nausea or diarrhea

While these symptoms may help you see if your dog has seasonal allergies, the best way to find out the root of their symptoms is to track any changes to diet, environment, or climate. Any changes to your dog’s day-to-day life can introduce them to new allergens and, therefore, trigger allergic reactions. 

Seasonal allergies are typically mild and can usually be treated with a quick trip to the vet or an over-the-counter antihistamine like Benadryl or Zyrtec. If your dog’s symptoms persist for more than a month, they may have an allergy to something in their diet or their home environment. 

Spring can bring about new contact allergies as well, meaning your dog is allergic to something that comes into contact with their skin. Cleaning products can irritate and cause allergies in dogs, as well as grass fertilizers or pesticides. So, when it’s time to start your spring cleaning make sure you check the ingredients in your cleaning supplies to ensure they don’t include any harmful chemicals to dogs. If your dog does show signs of contact allergies, you can try bathing them with a shampoo specially made for dogs with skin allergies or irritation. Of course, if symptoms continue please reach out to your vet. 

Most dogs show signs of food allergies within six months of being on a particular diet, but any changes in diet or environment can introduce new allergens to your dog. If you have been feeding your dog the same food for a while and they suddenly start to show allergy symptoms, check the ingredients to see if the manufacturer changed the recipe. Our dogs’ bellies are sensitive, so any slight changes to their diet can affect what they are able to digest. Again, if your dog continues to have symptoms, please take them to the vet so that they can test them for allergies, or identify the real source of your dog’s discomfort. 

If your pet is showing any symptoms of allergies, or more severe allergic reactions like anaphylactic shock, please reach out to your vet immediately to find the best course of action. But if your pup has mild seasonal sniffles, we hope that this article will help you and your pup have a happy and healthy transition into the spring season!