Help Your Pets Who Suffer From Allergies  The warmth of spring brings flowers and grass. The weather is welcome after a cold, wet winter! But the grass and pollen that come in the spring sometime affect our pets. Dogs and cats are closer to the ground and more likely to breathe or come into contact with allergens. Pollen, grass, and even fleas can prompt allergic reactions such as
  • Runny eyes
  • Runny nose
  • Skin irritation or open wounds. Itching at the lower back and base of the tail often indicate a flea allergy.
  • Coughing, sneezing, wheezing, snoring
  • Diarrhea
  • Red, irritated ears
  • Licking
  • Paw chewing
How can you alleviate these symptoms? First, limit the time your pet spends outside when pollen is high. Rinse your pets' feet with water when they come in from walking in grass. Insecticides can also cause an allergic reaction. Clean pets' ears regularly, using a soothing ear rinse. Avoid alcohol and hydrogen peroxide when cleaning ears. Benadryl (dyphenhydramine) can be used to alleviate symptoms, but consult your veterinarian before administering any medication. Bathing your pet every two weeks helps reduce allergic reactions. More frequent bathing can cause skin irritation. Regular grooming visits reduce your pet's discomfort, and some groomers offer discounts when pet parents schedule regular visits. The causes of allergic reactions are not limited to spring flowers. Seasonal and contact allergies can occur anytime. So note when your pet exhibits signs of an allergic reaction. Some might be on-going, while others come and go. On-going scratching or symptoms might indicate allergies, such as food allergies. If your pet suffers any of the discomforts listed above, consult your veterinarian to bring relief so that you can all enjoy springtime! By Beth Crosby

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