Pet Allergy Treatment in Birmingham, AL
Just like humans, allergies are quite common in pets. They include food allergies, skin allergies, or even allergies to fleas and ticks. Is your pet scratching, chewing, or licking excessively? Are you noticing discolored fur or hair loss? While it is often hard to tell if a dog or cat is being playful by rolling around or if they’re actually suffering, these can all be symptoms of allergies in pets. Believe it or not, at Double Oak Mountain Animal Hospital, about ten percent of all allergy cases that we see in dogs stem from allergic reactions to their food or treats!
Looking for a vet near me that can help determine whether your pet is suffering from allergies? Visit us so we can perform tests to get to the bottom of the issue. Our clinic can perform dog allergy testing in Birmingham, cat allergy testing in Birmingham, administer the appropriate medications, and provide nutritional counseling to make sure your dogs and cats are allergy-free and living their best lives.
What Are Pet Environmental Allergies?
Environmental allergies occur when there is an exaggerated immune response to an allergen. An allergen is a protein that comes from exposure to things like tree pollen, grass pollen, dander, and flea saliva. Your pet can develop antibodies to an allergen and then overreact to it. This leads to skin inflammation and itchiness.
You’ll notice is a lot of scratching and biting in order to alleviate this itchiness. Unfortunately, it typically results in even more skin issues, such as red, puffy skin, bleeding, sores, and permanent skin damage.
By having your Birmingham veterinarian perform dog allergy testing in Birmingham or cat allergy testing in Birmingham, it’s possible to get to the root cause of your dog or cat’s allergy issues rather than just allowing them to incessantly scratch themselves, which can be counterproductive to their health.
How Do You Diagnose and Treat My Pet’s Environmental Allergy?
Looking for a vet near me that offers allergy testing? Double Oak Mountain Animal Hospital can perform specific procedures on your pet to determine exactly what they are allergic to. As with humans, intradermal allergy testing is considered the gold standard. If we observe a positive allergic reaction to a particular allergen, we know this is a trigger for them. An alternative testing method is blood allergy testing; however, in some pets, blood-based allergy testing may not give any positive answers.
Once we know what your pet is allergic to, we can consider desensitization therapy using oral drops or injections. Environmental allergies can also be treated with medication or medicated baths for symptomatic control. We will discuss your pet’s unique condition and work with you to determine the best treatment.
What Is a Food Allergy?
Food allergies are quite common and occur in your pet when there is an overreaction of the immune system to a particular ingredient in their diet. This can cause a variety of uncomfortable symptoms including gastrointestinal issues, chronic ear inflammation, diarrhea, gas, constant paw licking, and more.
In order to diagnose the exact reason why your animal may be experiencing these symptoms, your Birmingham veterinarian will likely perform dog allergy testing in Birmingham or cat allergy testing in Birmingham.
How Do You Diagnose and Treat My Pet’s Food Allergy?
With food allergies, we typically see that common culprits are dairy, beef, wheat, egg, chicken, pork, and fish. Unfortunately, these ingredients are all very common in dog and cat foods along with fillers like sweet potato and wheat, which could also be the cause of your pet’s allergies. If we suspect that your dog or cat has a food allergy, we may recommend a dietary elimination trial using a specific food for a period of time. This is not simply a change of food, rather it is considered a diagnostic test and should be performed under the supervision of a veterinarian.
As it often happens, dogs and cats may very well be allergic to more than one thing, which makes planning an appropriate diet more difficult. That said, we will determine the best food to trial based on your pet’s age, general health, previous diet, and the symptoms they are exhibiting. We may recommend a food that is composed of a hydrolyzed protein, which is a protein that is broken up into tiny molecules that the immune system is unlikely to recognize as the “problem ingredient.” In some cases, we may recommend an elimination food trial using a single protein source.
Looking for a vet near me that can provide compassionate support in determining the best way to treat animal allergies? At Double Oak Mountain Animal Hospital, we understand how much you love your pet. No matter the reason for your visit, we will make sure they receive the best care available from professionals who truly care. To learn more about pet allergies and treatment or to make an appointment, call us today at (205) 991-5446.