My dog has allergies. What can I do about it? Please help.
Bill from Clinton, MO
My Husky has major skin issues - which is not uncommon for the breed. With all of the research that I have done, the natural health classes that I have taken and the tons of money that I have spent on trying different dog foods, I have definitely come to the conclusion that it is the food that we feed our pets.
Cats and wolves (dogs) have been thriving for tens of thousands of years without our input on what they should eat. Only for the past 60 years or so have we decided that we are the authority on what our fury friends should eat. Funny, how our pets are now so susceptible to disease such as cancer and diabetes and allergies.
We should be feeding our pets what their wild counter parts eat.
Wolves eat raw meat (generally smaller animals such as rabbit, fish and birds but also venison and caribou), raw bones (only cooked bones splinter), eggs, roots, fruits and vegetables. They do not eat grains, meat meal or additives. Wolves have also been known to eat homeopathic remedies such as garlic to keep away parasites and willow bark to help with aches and pains.
Cats are pure carnivores eating a diet of small prey such as rabbits, birds and fish. However, they will occasionally eat plant matter such as grass and catnip to help aid digestion. With all of the commercial pet food on the market, it is no wonder so many of our pets have allergic and digestive issues. If your pet has a skin allergy, try taking him/her off of all grains (rice and oatmeal are easier to digest but are still grains and they can still cause problems). It could also be an over abundance of yeast caused by too much starch in food (grains and potatoes - sweet potatoes have much less starch) and antibiotics.
A great dry and wet food to transition your pets on is Wellness Core.
Regarding raw meat; there are so many reasons why your pets should eat raw foods.
First Raw foods have digestive enzymes which can only be found in foods that have not been cooked, radiated or processed. Digestive enzymes aid in digestion and are essential for good health.
Second Cooked meat takes 4-6 hours longer to digest than raw meat. The longer meat stays in the gut, the worse for the digestive tract.
Three Raw meat creates more acid in the stomach to aid in the digestion of food. Yes, more acid in your stomach is good for you and your pet. Acid reflux and other acid related issues are caused by too little acid in your stomach not too much.
Third Raw foods contain less free-radicals and more vitamins than cooked.
Fourth Everyone is so afraid of the bad bacteria in raw meat. Yes, bacteria can hurt your pet, but it can also help. The more bacteria your pet is exposed to (OK, there are some limitations) the better your pets immune system. Animals put their noses and tongues in nasty things all day long, much of which has worse bacteria than raw meat. It's better to prepare your pets for those instances then to compromise its immune system by trying to keep bacteria away from it. Also, when killing bad bacteria, you are killing good bacteria which is again, good for digestion.
Note: A poor digestive tract causes disease.
I concur with the person who said Benadryl. I give my dog 25 mg (1 pill over the counter) every time I see she is itchy. She weighs about 45 pounds. It really works, and in my dog's case it is on an as needed basis.
You need to find out what he's actually allergic to which is where your vet comes in. It could be environmental or systemic and if you're not treating the right thing, you're wasting your time and money and keeping the dog miserable.
Have 3 dogs with allergies - changed their food to Bil-Jac which really helped [made with human grade ingredients!]; but one still itched and chewed. Got Atarax [Hydroxine Hydrochloride] pills from the Vet and they worked. Since I also have bad allergies [food, environment, insects, etc.]I asked my Doctor for these and have found that I'm still allergic, but not nearly as severely! I now 'share' my Atarax with my dogs and we're all doing better!
You give your dog benadryl and put them on a lamb and rice only, dog food diet. I have found that bathing my pug/chi mix in dawn liquid dish soap takes the itching away for the most part and makes her coat soft.
My little 10-lb shih tzu has skin allergies that I treat with a prescription dog food from the vet, filtered water and Benadryl Quick Strips cut into appropriate dose sizes, twice daily. She's always resisted taking pills and absolutely hated having the liquid version squirted into her mouth, but she loves the vanilla-mint flavor of the Quick Strips and considers them a treat. If you feed your dog table scraps, stop. Try using baby carrots as a treat. I never thought to try fish oil. Thanks for the idea. I'll bring it up with the vet next time I'm in there.
I have a 6 mo pit puppy who is driving me crazy itching. He has a chunk missing from his neck due to scratching. Is a fish oil cap Ok to use. And what does Peanut butter do?
Hey all, go to walmart and try this hydrocortisone spray it's in a blue bottle made by Hartz. It was like 4 bucks. I sprayed that on my pit's stomach underneath his arms and legs because he wouldn't stop scratching. It helped right away!
I had went to the vet and he didn't help at all. However I still have a problem with my pups eyes they are constantly itchy and runny... can't find anything for that. The worthless vet said the pup has allergies and didn't help me. He sure took my 300 bux no problem though. Anyway hope that spray works as good for u as it did for me. I know white dogs have a lot of skin problems.
It's the food...a lot of the pet foods out there have grains, preservatives, etc. I started doing my own research by comparing the ingredients and now feed my dogs Countrypet Naturals. I tried it and all the allergies disappeared. I did more research on it and found it be a pure food from New Zealand. Their foods do not contain any grains or preservatives, which causes the allergies. My dogs wolfed it up! Their energy level is up and you cannot tell the difference between my puppy and older dog!
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Do you know what he is allergic to? We had a dog that had allergies and through research found that corn is a major allergen in dogs. Look at your food labels, many dog foods have corn listed as the first ingredient. Try switching food to one that doesn't contain corn and give it a couple of weeks for the allergens to get out of the system. Hopefully you will see big improvements. (09/17/2007)
I had the same problem. To this day I'm not 100% sure what was going on but my dog had a lot of thinning hair and chewed on himself like it was his job. Anyway, I followed all of the steps for flea treatment, bomb, vacuume, bath repeat 6 weeks and of course some topical flea treatment such as Advantex. The thing that I think made the biggest impact was the change in his diet. I switched him to an all organic food made with fish and oatmeal. It runs about 45.00 for a 52lb bag, not cheap but well worth it. My dog's hair has grown back he doesn't smell bad, never chews on himself and has less eye mucus. (09/17/2007)
We have 2 bichons with terrible allergies. They weigh about 15 lbs each. We give per the vets advice 50 mg of Benadry to each dog in the morning and 50 mg of Benadry at night. It is the maximum dose allowed. We also feed only fish and rice dog food (Salmon and rice by Purina One) It is all natural and we buy it in the large bags. We watch for sales and coupons. We use human shampoo on them and human hair conditioner with a bath once a week at least. We use Frontline for fleas and ticks as they seem to have a bad time with the bites. We never give them beef in treats, scraps or any form. I believe that you can never be sure what hormone or antibiotic is given to the cows. (We don't eat beef either.) With one of our dogs he could get something with beef and within a few minutes be in a complete tizzy with itching. This problem just about drove us and the dogs crazy until we got a handle on it. We went through buying the allergy medicine every month and getting them to take it, and also the cortisone shots. It was an expensive ordeal but we got it under control. We also give them only distilled water to drink and don't feed dog food with red dyed pellets in it. Since they are white dogs, the red dye was excreted in their saliva and their feet and mouth fur was red tinged. We got this tip from a professional groomer magazine and it really does work. Good luck with your doggie! (09/18/2007)
I have a 13 year old Cocker that has always had food allergies. For a long time I gave her Purina, then lamb and rice. Last year I finally found a dog food that has given me the results I have been expecting. It is called "Wysong." It is made in Michigan. The product can be checked out online and I believe ordered also if you don't have a PetSupplies Plus near you. Wysong also has treats and canned food. Cinder is now on 'Duck Au Jus'. I have been extremely pleased and I don't give her any other dog food. Good luck with your venture. (09/19/2007)
Try one capsule of Fish Oil, on top of a cut up hot dog, once a week. It fixes the dry skin and the itchies from the inside out. At first, ask you vet if you can give your 'baby' some predizone to help clear up the infection, start the fish oil at the same time. (09/19/2007)
Get a second opinion, should be inexpensive, that would be the first thing to try. (09/19/2007)
My dog has allergies and was itchy even after I spent $1100 at the vet, switched her diet, etc. I did some googling, and found that Pepto-Bismol pills are very good for a dog with a minor upset stomach, so I decided to try them. She's been on them a week and she seems to have gotten a LOT better. She is also eating the Purina One for Sensitive Systems and that seems to be helping too. I've also been giving her daily fish oil all along as well. She actually likes the fish oil caps and thinks they are a treat, lol.
But before anyone gives anything to their dog, they should always check with their vet first. Please, EVERYONE, check with your vet before trying any sort of home remedy for your dog. (09/19/2007)
I have a lab/chow dog with extreme skin allergies. We have tried everything, including having him tested for food and plant allergies. We then gave him allergy shots for nearly two years, but it didn't help. His worst allergy is ragweed and whatever else blooms in August and September. Every year he takes Prednisone (steroid) and Hydroxizine (antihistamine). This year our vet talked with a University that specializes in dog allergies. We tried a new medicine called Temaril-P that is a mixture of a lower dose of steroid and antihistamine. He takes 2 a day along with 3 of the Hydroxizine and it has helped him a lot. We will quit giving this when everything freezes here in Wisconsin. He still itches sometimes in the winter and then we give him Benadryl, another antihistamine, cheaper and can buy over the counter. Good luck. Toby used to scratch holes in his nose and head. (09/20/2007)
Put him on a an all-natural or organic food. The less ingredients, the better. Read the labels on commercial dog food, no wonder our pets are suffering from the same illnesses we are (cancer, obesity, allergies...). (09/24/2007)