Inflamed? Consider Pet Allergy Testing
Just like us, animals can suffer from allergies with seasonal symptoms or ones that last throughout the year. However, instead of constantly sneezing, wheezing, or wiping away tears, a pet with allergies experiences itchy skin. As the skin becomes more inflamed from constant scratching, secondary yeast or bacterial infections occur. This physical state can be absolutely maddening (for you and your pet), making pet allergy testing a viable option.
What is That?
Most commonly, pets are allergic to fleas, pollen, molds, mites, and dander. Either immediately or over time, owners may notice excessive dander, a slight odor, and various problems on the skin, such as pimples, scabs, redness, and hair loss. Also:
- Significant scratching or rubbing against upholstery or carpet
- Biting or chewing on itchy, red parts of the body
- Head shaking
- Ear scratching
- Open sores or hot spots
- Occasional sneezing, coughing, or runny nose
All indicative of allergies, some painful signs are also related to complications from secondary infections. Disheartening or exasperating, this cycle can be helped by treating the infection properly and then performing comprehensive pet allergy testing.
How it Works
There are two methods for pet allergy testing: intradermal testing or blood serum. The former typically involves sedation, clipping of the fur, and the injection of a panel of potential allergens. Alternatively, the blood serum test analyzes allergic antibodies in the blood, helping us understand specific triggers. In the end, pet allergy testing allows us to design a treatment protocol unique to your pet.
What We Do Next
Desensitization sublingual drop therapy is one of our most effective methods for treating pet allergies. It “retrains” the immune system to be less reactive to allergens. Oral drops of allergens are administered over time in small but increasing quantities to thereby decrease allergy symptoms.
Owners tend to like drops instead of injecting their pets and report back that their pets don’t seem to mind the drops or the taste. It does, however, take a daily commitment to administer and sometimes, the results aren’t seen for at least 6 months.
Is it Food?
Food allergies are handled differently than environmental allergies. The best way to find out what ingredients trigger reactions is to restrict certain items for a set period of time. Then slowly re-introduce them back into your pet’s system.
Benefits of Pet Allergy Testing
As we mentioned, pet allergy testing allows us to narrow down what triggers immune reactions. Many animals suffer from atopic dermatitis, a condition that affects the skin. While bathing, grooming, nutritional support, and certain environmental changes can certainly help, desensitization therapy can get to the underlying problem (instead of simply managing symptoms).
Our team works with you on establishing an allergen and toxin-free home environment for your pet. Many hypoallergenic products can soothe itchy or raw skin, air purifiers can remove airborne triggers, and supplements like omega-3 fatty acids can be helpful.
Whether your pet is suffering from seasonal allergies (who isn’t?) or you’ve noticed that he or she remains itchy year-round, pet allergy testing can be the solution. Please contact us for more information.