Posts Tagged ‘environmental allergies’

Is There Natural Allergy Relief for Dogs?

Thursday, March 26th, 2009

Many people look for natural allergy relief for dogs because they worry about the side effects common to more aggressive medications such as steroids. Pet owners have a right to be concerned about side effects such as heart and kidney damage, but finding natural allergy relief that works for all dogs can be difficult.

Some holistic veterinarians suggest essential fatty acids such as Omega 3 and Omega 6. Regular use of these supplements reduces histamine response to allergens and conditions the skin to reduce itching. These can be effective treatments for some pets, but they work in less than half of the animals that take them. These also have to be taken continuously or the allergy symptoms will quickly return.

Prevention vs. Treatment in Natural Allergy Relief for Dogs

Other forms of natural allergy relief for dogs focus on relieving the symptoms after they appear. Weekly baths with colloidal oatmeal shampoos and natural skin lotions that reduce the inflammation and painful itching are a wonderful way to treat allergies once they strike, but what about preventing allergies?

The only way to prevent allergies in dogs is to minimize exposure to allergens. Our article on Allergy Control for Pets can give you some tips for minimizing exposure and controlling the environment your dog is in. The only purely natural allergy relief for dogs that works year round is prevention – and the best continuous form of prevention is the PetAirapy system! By filtering out or neutralizing pollens, dust mites, molds and other contaminants, the PetAirapy system prevents your dog from inhaling allergens in your home.

I guess our moms were right – an ounce of prevention really IS worth a pound of cure! And the PetAirapy filtration system is the most effective preventative, natural allergy relief for dogs available.

Pets with Skin Allergies: Why Aren’t There Better Treatments?

Monday, March 23rd, 2009

A friend of mine, Lori, used to have a Black Lab that she repeatedly took to the veterinarian because she was looking for a treatment for her skin allergies. Unfortunately, it took months of trial and error and suffering before her Labrador Retriever found relief. The vet explained to her that skin allergy treatments for pets were, in part, a guessing game that didn’t always work. He admitted that there was no single, effective form of treatment for pets with skin allergies, although there were several different types of treatments that sometimes worked.

What a shame for pets! I know my friend felt horrible watching her precious pet scratch, chew, rub her face in the carpet and whimper from the pain and itching while the veterinarian scrambled to find an effective treatment for her canine atopic dermatitis. Among the various skin allergy treatments for pets that were tried were:

  • Medicated baths. These are a good way to temporarily relieve the itching, dryness and discomfort of skin problems in pets. These can also moisturize the skin and temporarily control the unpleasant odor that often accompanies skin allergies in pets. Some medicated baths also contain antiseptic properties if the area is infected. These are only temporary solutions, however, and usually last a few days to a week at the most before the skin problems return.
  • Colloidal Oatmeal baths are also sometimes recommended for dogs with skin problems because it soothes the itching and reduces inflammation. Again, this is only a way to relieve the discomfort, and doesn’t cure the problem.
  • Steroids are one of the most effective treatments for skin problems in dogs, unfortunately they can only be used for short periods of time. Why? Because they can lead to secondary infections, seizures and even diabetes when they are used long-term.
  • Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids are recommended for many dogs who are prone to chronic skin problems. These are supplements that can be taken every day and have very few side effects. However, only about 25% of the dogs and cats who take them daily respond to them.
  • Antihistamines are one of the best ways to treat pets with skin problems. They alleviate the itch and reduce the inflammation, allowing the body’s natural defenses combat the problem. When these do work, they are very effective, but antihistamines only work for about one-third of the pets who take them!

Eventually my friend’s sweet Labrador recovered due to a combination of medicated shampoos, antihistamines and steroids that cost well over $1,300 before her dog felt better! And within a few months, the allergies returned! It turned out she was allergic to pollen and dust mites!

I wish I could have told her about PetAirapy’s “one-two punch” approach to preventing allergies before her Lab passed away! By filtering out airborne particles and combined with UV light that kills molds and other spores, my friend could have made her home much more comfortable for her Labrador, but she’s just ordered the PetAirapy system for her home because she has another dog, Soldier, who suffers from allergies! Lori has promised to keep me posted on Soldier’s progress once the PetAirapy system is installed.

It’s a shame that all of the research into pet skin care hasn’t resulted in a lasting cure for pets with skin allergies. I guess it goes to show that the causes of allergies in pets are complex and difficult to manage. Perhaps this is because there are so many different breeds of dogs and cats and so many possible causes of allergic dermatitis. Whatever the reason, pet owners should know that there aren’t any sure-fire treatments for dogs with skin problems – in some cases, the treatment is as bad as the allergy, and can even make your pet sick. So you need to be pro-active in preventing skin problems in dogs and cats you love. Using the PetAirapy filtration system is the best way I know to keep your pet healthy and keep you breathing easier!

Canine Atopic Dermatits Treatment: Troubling Statistics

Thursday, March 12th, 2009

More pets are developing canine atopic dermatitis every year, which means every year more dog owners are coping with pets who are itching, scratching and miserable due to severe skin discomfort. These animals have often begun to suffer during seasonal periods such as spring and fall, but over the years the active phase of atopic dermatitis in dogs usually becomes longer until the pet is often suffering year-round.