Understanding Allergies in Dogs and Discovering Triggers

Runny eyes, itchy ears and stinky paws are all common signs your dog may suffer from allergies. While allergy symptoms are easy to recognize, finding the cause can sometimes be tricky. Dog allergens typically fall into three different categories: outdoor, indoor and food allergies. Some dogs have multiple allergy triggers which can take longer to identify and treat.

Good Grooming to Reduce Outdoor Allergens

Common outdoor allergy triggers include: pollen, fleas and mold spores. If your pet spends time outdoors, these are nearly impossible to avoid. Help minimize your pet’s suffering by using a flea comb, keeping the ears clean, and frequent baths or foot soaks. Foot soaks can be great for reducing allergens because your dog’s paws sweat, making them a magnet for allergens.

Use Natural or Organic Products in Your Home

Household cleaning products can wreak havoc on a dog’s immune system. If possible, use natural cleaning solutions and discard any scented laundry detergents or dryer sheets. Pet owners should also avoid spraying perfume or cologne around their dog.

Smoking is another pet allergy trigger that is often overlooked. If you must smoke, do it outdoors away from your dog. Secondhand smoke not only causes allergies in pets, but can lead to other more serious health issues too.

Feed a Grain-Free Diet

Most food allergies and sensitivities are caused by a handful of popular pet food ingredients. Wheat, soy, corn, eggs and dairy products are some of the top offenders. While dogs can be allergic to certain types of meat too, often the reaction is caused by giving your pet non-organic meat that contains harmful additives. To minimize ear scratching, paw biting and digestive troubles, only offer food and treats that are grain-free.

By following these simple steps, you can help improve your dog’s health and happiness.

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