Dog Skin Allergies
Skin Allergies in Dogs
Dogs scratching their abdomen, flanks, and ears, or rubbing their face, chewing their paws, and excessive licking are all signs of skin allergies symptoms. In addition, you may also notice inflammation such as hot spots, lesions, or even poor coat quality. For dogs with food sensitivities you may notice gastrointestinal pain and discomfort, diarrhea, and flatulence. In either case it is not uncommon for dogs to suffer from chronic ear infections.
Common conditions include:
1. Environmental and food allergies
Dogs can get skin allergy allergic reactions to substances in their environment and food. For example, a reaction to pollen and dust is called atopy. Your dog commonly shows scratching because of the constant feeling of itchiness. Scratching also causes additional skin conditions, such as scabbing and wounds. Food allergies also cause similar symptoms.
● Inhalant and Contact Allergies: Substances that can cause an allergic reaction in dogs are much the same as those that cause reactions in people including the pollen’s of grasses, trees and weeds, dust mites, and molds. A clue to diagnosing these allergies is to look at the timing of the reaction. Does it happen year-round? This may be mold or dust. If the reaction is seasonal, pollen’s may be the culprit.
2. Bacterial infections
In dogs, itchy skin conditions can be secondary signs of bacterial infections. There are several types of bacterial infection; however, the two most common skin bacterial infections are:
● Bacterial folliculitis, signs of folliculitis are swellings, pustules, and itching.
● Bacterial hypersensitivity occurs when a dog’s immune system overreacts to the normal Staphylococcus (Staph) bacteria on its skin. It appears that bacterial hypersensitivity in the dog is more likely to occur if other conditions such as inhalant allergy, and/or flea allergy are concurrently present.
Fleas are very unpleasant for dogs as well as humans. They can cause discomfort and irritation in dogs. Persistent scratching is the most common sign of a flea infestation; however, this can cause secondary skin issues, such as wounds and bleeding.
This type of reaction usually is not to the flea itself, but rather to proteins in its saliva. Interestingly enough, the dogs most prone to this problem are not dogs who are constantly flea-ridden, but those who are exposed only occasionally! A single bite can cause a reaction for five to seven days, so you don’t need a lot of fleas to have a miserable dog.
4. Ticks and Mites
Mites and ticks are parricides that can also cause adverse skin reactions in dogs, resulting in scratching, hives, bumps, and redness.
● Ticks havoc on a dog’s body and can spread several diseases. You may notice your dog licking and chewing a particular area on its body where the tick is located, which can become swollen, inflamed, and red. Your dog can also become anemic; develop random scabs, head-shaking if attached to the outer ear flaps. Ticks can cause paralyzes’
Tick disease: You may notice symptoms long after the tick is gone. That’s because tick disease symptoms typically don’t present themselves until months after the tick bite. In such cases, you might notice fever, tiredness, shifting lameness, pale gums, and difficulty breathing. Lyme disease: This well-known tick-borne disease can cause depression, loss of appetite, fever, swollen lymph nodes, and renal failure.
● Dust mites (Dermatophagoides farinae, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus) reside in textiles such as carpet, bedding, mattresses, upholstery, and cloth toys. They prefer a specific temperature and humidity to flourish, which is easy to come by during periods of sleep. Mites have translucent bodies and prefer the dark, and they like a sleeping body that is exhaling warm, moist air. Dust mites feed on you and your dog’s skin scales, bacteria, fungi and, viruses in the environment. The actual source of the allergen is protein that is found in dust mite feces. Mange is a skin condition produced by mites that can cause irritation of the skin, resulting in itching, hair loss, and inflammation. Most types of mange are highly contagious.
5. Yeast infections
Yeast is a fungus that is present on your dog’s skin. It is usually harmless; however, variations in your dog’s skin can cause an upsurge in yeast. After that, the body tries to reduce the growth of yeast which causes skin crusting, itchiness, and smelling and ultimately causes the skin thickening.
● Skin Yeast infections can occur anywhere on a dog’s skin, including the belly. They are often seen in areas that are moist, such as in skin folds, especially in “wrinkly” dog breeds. The affected skin may be red, irritated, itchy, greasy, or flaky, and there may be hair loss. If the infection is chronic, the skin may thicken and become darker in color. Yeast infections on a dog’s mouth or face can cause extreme itching or face rubbing.
● Paws. A dog with yeast infections on its paws can have red, irritated, and itchy paws. The underside of the paws, between the pads, is affected most often, but yeast can occur anywhere on the paws. Sometimes a brown discharge can be seen in the nail beds. Dogs with yeast infections on the paws usually lick their paws more than normal. There may also be hair loss.
● Ears Dog ear yeast infections are quite common, and the ears often smell sweet or musty. Usually, you will see redness, which may extend onto the flap of the ear, and the discharge is generally brown. The ear may appear to be greasy, and the hair may be matted. Yeast infections in a dog’s ears can be very itchy, causing dogs to scratch their ears or rub their head excessively.