Is your dog or puppy itching, scratching, or licking themselves excessively? These could be indications of allergies. Allergies aren't uncommon in dogs. They are the number one reason for visits to the vet. Typically, these symptoms affect the ears and skin. While humans easily outgrow allergies, the same doesn't apply to dogs. The older they grow, the worse their allergies become.
Here is everything you need to know about dog allergies and the medications you can use to relieve them.
Allergy Types in Dogs
Here are the common dog allergies:
A flea allergy is the commonest skin infection in dogs. When a flea bites your dog, it injects flea saliva into its body, causing itching.
Flea allergy dermatitis treatment aims at relieving symptoms of irritation and itchy skin. To get rid of allergy symptoms in flea-allergic dogs, it is essential to ensure strict flea control. You can find a variety of effective flea control medications and products in the market today but Honest Paws offers the best. They are available in both liquid and tropical forms. Others are administered orally in the form of chews and include Mobility Soft Chews. Discuss with your veterinarian to find out the best option for your pet. In severe cases, it is imperative to clean the dog's environment for fleas.
These allergies result from substances that exist in your dog's surroundings. The allergens can be inhaled or absorbed via the skin upon contact. Common allergens for these allergies include dust mites, mould spores, pollens, and animal fibers.
If allergy testing is yet to be performed, the treatment is symptomatic. A symptomatic treatment aims at reducing or eliminating the dog's symptoms.
- Oral medications
- Fatty acids
- Frequent bathing
Remember that steroids should only be used in the short term because they pose the risk of adverse side effects. After an allergy test has been carried out, the perfect way to treat the allergy is by avoiding the allergen.
Another treatment option you should consider is immunotherapy. This is an allergy vaccine administered orally or by injection, which aims at reducing the reactivity of your immune system to allergens.
Food allergies are also referred to as adverse food reactions. Your dog can have an allergic reaction to a certain food at any point in its life, regardless of whether they have eaten such foods in the past. While most dog allergies are to protein sources in their diets, they could sometimes react to cereals and other ingredients.
The first step in treating your dog's food allergy is feeding them a hypoallergenic diet for about 12 weeks. This is the surest way to establish whether they have a food allergy. A hypoallergenic diet either contains limited ingredients with an uncommon protein source. They could also be specially processed, so they are unlikely to cause an allergic reaction. The concept here is that your dog won't be allergic to food it has never consumed.
During this trial period, you could use other treatment options, such as steroids, to help keep the itching in check.
Symptoms of Allergic Reactions in Dogs
Here are signs that will tell you your dog has an allergic reaction:
- Excessive skin irritation
- Skin redness
- Excessive itching
- Watery eyes
- Biting of paws or legs
- Rubbing of the muzzles and face
- Loss of fur
- Recurrent ear and skin infections
- Gastrointestinal signs like vomiting, diarrhea, or increased bowel movements
What is Zyrtec?
Zyrtec comprises an active ingredient called cetirizine. This ingredient possesses antihistamine properties. Zyrtec functions by blocking the receptors in the lungs, blood vessels, and tissues. This action prevents histamine from being bound to these receptors. When histamine cannot bind to these receptors, it won't dilate your dog's blood vessels. As a result, symptoms of watery eyes and sneezing, among others, are reduced.
While Zyrtec is typically prescribed for humans, Zyrtec for dogs is also available. However, before giving the medication to your furry friend, it is important that you discuss it with your veterinary so they can prescribe the appropriate medication and dosage.
Where Do You Buy Zyrtec for Your Pet?
One of the biggest mistakes you can ever make regarding your pet's medication is buying Zyrtec for dogs over the counter. Because the ingredients and dosage are so different between humans and dogs, we recommend using human-formulated products. Because humans are heavier than dogs, they have different dosages. Also, dogs have different weights, so their dosages will vary.
If you think your dog could use some Zyrtec, the best approach is to take them with you to the vet. Before prescribing the medication, your veterinarian will keep in mind the dog's weight and breed. Also, the ingredients in regular Zyrtec could be harmful to dogs. This is even more reason to get medication specifically tailored for dogs, as they contain all the healthy and safe ingredients needed to treat your dog.
Interactions With Other Drugs: Can You Mix Zyrtec and CBD?
While they may have different functions, Zyrtec and CBD may interact if taken simultaneously. The risk of adverse complications is low but not non-existent. CBD may bring out cetirizine's sedative attributes leading to stronger sedative effects of the ingredient. While cetirizine, on its own, possesses very minimal sedative effects, pairing it with CBD could cause impaired mental performance and alertness. As a result, your dog may experience fatigue and asthenia.
So, you can always mix Zyrtec and CBD dog treats to give your dog a calming and relaxing feel.
Why You Should Avoid Zyrtec-D
Veterinarians advise against giving Zyrtec-D to your dog. The drug contains pseudoephedrine–an ingredient that is harmful to your dog. The synthetic ingredient is responsible for the brain's fight and flight response. While this action helps drain out mucus to ease congestion, especially during an allergic reaction, it is only safe for humans but not dogs. Why? The ingredient significantly elevates blood pressure and triggers seizures in the canine family. In severe cases, it could lead to hypertension and possible organ failure.
Side Effects of Zyrtec
Because Zyrtec possesses antihistamine properties, your dog is likely to experience the following side effects:
- Urinary retention
- Excessive salivation
- Impulsive response
Additionally, Zyrtec for dogs may seriously harm the liver and kidneys. It's important to avoid this medication if your pet has liver or kidney issues.
Precautions When Using Zyrtec
As mentioned before, one side effect of this medication is urinary retention. For this reason, it isn't suitable for dogs with renal issues. If you suspect your dog has a renal problem, you should let your vet examine them. They may need to use a catheter to drain urine from the bladder.
Other conditions you should be cautious with include:
- Seizure disorders
- Senior pets
- Difficulty passing waste
- Working dogs
- Pregnant or nursing dogs
According to some studies, Zyrtec isn't suitable for pregnant dogs. This is because it could pass from the mother to the puppies during breastfeeding. Also, remember to let your vet know of any other medications your pet may be on. Some medications could interact with cetirizine in Zytrec and cause severe side effects.
Home Remedies for Allergies
Although your dog will eventually need to be checked by the veterinary if they are experiencing an allergic reaction, there are some home remedies you can try at home to alleviate the pain and discomfort as you wait to see the doctor.
Here are some common ones:
This is the go-to remedy for soothing irritated skin. Setting up an oatmeal bath is quite easy. All you need to do is mix oatmeal with water and apply it to your pet's skin. You could even fill up the entire tub and get playful with your dog as you bathe them. Allow them to soak in for about 10 minutes.
High levels of lauric acid found in coconut oil are essential for calming inflamed skin. All you are required to do is apply small portions on your pet's skin. Alternatively, you could mix it with their food.
CBD for pets
The sensitive skin on your dog responds amazingly to CBD oil, which is essential for keeping healthy skin. Like coconut oil, you can mix it with dog food or massage it on the dog's coat. This is beneficial, especially for canines with skin allergies or eczema. It helps reduce skin redness, irritation, and swelling resulting from allergic reactions.
You also have the option of CBD tropical products and bites and chews that help manage your dog's symptoms. One thing with allergies is that they escalate stress and anxiety levels, leading to constant scratching. The good news? The ingredients in CBD dog treats reduce stress signals coming from your dog's brain and promote relaxation.
Allergens like dust mites and pollen may cause allergic reactions in your dog. They may have symptoms such as fur loss, increased bowel movements, and irritated skin. Left untreated, some of these symptoms could be fatal. Therefore, if you think your dog could be having an allergic reaction, it is advisable to take them to the vet, who may recommend the necessary medication. Often, they may recommend Zyrtec–an antihistamine. However, owing to CBD's calming, relaxing, and anti-inflammatory properties, you can always mix CBD dog treats with Zyrtec to alleviate your pet's symptoms.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why is Zyrtec the Preferred Medication?
There are several reasons why Zyrtec is the recommended antihistamine for your furry friend. For starters, the medication is a second-generation antihistamine meaning your pet will be free of fatigue or drowsiness. Additionally, because Zyrtec can last up to a day, your dog will have 24 hours free of itching skin or a runny nose. Furthermore, the drug is safer and poses fewer risks than other allergy medicines.
What are the Recommended Zyrtec Dosages?
The best way to determine the dosage for your dog is by consulting your vet. Typically, dog parents will give their pets a tablet a day, but this may vary from one dog to another. Besides, different conditions will need to be handled differently. Therefore, the dosage will depend on the symptoms you want to eliminate.
How Do You Administer Zyrtec to Your Dog?
Zyrtec is administered orally with syrups or tablets. If you think your dog will vomit after taking the medication, it is recommended that you mix it in their food. Alternatively, you could put the tablet inside a treat.
Here at Honest Paws, we offer a wide range of CBD dog treats to ensure your dog's allergies disappear as fast as they came. We understand how hard those allergy seasons may be on both you and your pet, and we offer a way to alleviate the symptoms better. Contact us today for any inquiries. Looking to treat your dogs with the best CBD products? Honest Paws offers the best products in the market. Plus you can get our free and expert advice!
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