For certain dogs, just like us humans, fall means allergies. In fact, dog allergies are incredibly common during this season. An increase of pollen in the air can leave your handsome hound itching, scratching and feeling downright miserable.
Signs of canine allergies include excessive scratching, head shaking and paw licking. They may also have a runny nose, watery, red or itchy eyes and be sneezing or coughing. So, keep an eye out for these tell-tale symptoms.
Thankfully, it is possible to ease your pet’s discomfort. If your pup seems to be very distressed by its allergies then take them to the vet for advice and possible treatment. However, there are ways that you can protect your dog from seasonal allergies at home.
Airborne allergies are your dog’s biggest enemy right now, so keep your home safe by keeping windows and outside doors closed during the day and using the AC if needed. This will keep outside allergens such as pollen from entering the home and irritating your dog. Pollen tends to be at its highest levels in the air during the late morning, so you may wish to keep your dog inside during this time whenever possible.
Make sure that your air conditioning vents are clean, or they will spread allergens throughout your home every time the AC is on. If mold spores are contributing to your dog’s itching then a dehumidifier will keep dampness issues under control and stop mold in its tracks.
Remember to keep your house extra clean during fall. Mop and vacuum regularly, and wash your dog’s bedding once per week. This removes any allergens which you or your dog could have brought in from outside.
While bathing your pet on a regular basis isn’t always recommended as it can strip the natural oils from the dog’s skin, sometimes it is the better option. Washing your dog with a gentle shampoo for sensitive skin every two to four weeks will remove any build up of pollen and other irritants which can become trapped in the coat.
Try not to let your dog scratch and lick themselves excessively as it can further irritate the skin and even create nasty infections. Keep a close eye on them, and distract them with toys, chews or games if they seem preoccupied with scratching themselves. If the itching seems uncontrollable then consult your veterinarian.