Numerous Franklin pet owners who visit KKM Veterinary Clinic are always oblivious to the fact that pets also suffer from allergies. However, just like humans, environmental and seasonal changes can trigger allergic responses in animals.
According to Sandra Diaz, an assistant professor at Virginia-Maryland Regional college of veterinary medicine, about 10% of dogs suffer from allergies. If you have allergies, then you understand how uncomfortable they can get without medication. Thus, it is essential to identify and manage them to keep our pets comfortable.
What Is an Allergy?
An allergy is an immune response triggered by exposure to a substance that the body sees as dangerous. The response is often excessive and results in numerous body changes that are usually unnecessary. Some of the most common allergens in pets include proteins in food, plants, insects, and some animals.
The Science Behind an Allergic Response
An allergic reaction usually begins when an animal is exposed to an allergen. From birth, the animal's body is primed to react in a certain way to the said allergen. Thus after a few years of constant exposure, the immune system responds excessively, causing what is termed as an allergic reaction.
The cells that are thought to be responsible for the body's overreaction are known as mast cells. After years of exposure, the body develops antibodies that are released every time the animal is exposed to an allergen. These antibodies attach onto mast cells triggering a series of reactions that release a hormone known as histamine.
Histamine is what causes the symptoms associated with allergies.
Symptoms of Allergies in Pets
There are numerous symptoms that indicate an underlying allergy. Most of the time, taking your dog for frequent visits to the animal hospital in Franklin aids in early diagnosis. However, if you are keen, you can also identify an allergy. Here are some of the things to look out for:
- Chronic diarrhea and vomiting is a sign of a food allergy.
- Constant itching of the skin, which is either localized or generalized.
- Runny eye and nose discharge.
Types of Allergies
Allergies can be classified in numerous ways based on different criteria. Here are some examples:
- Time taken before the onset of symptoms-immediate type hypersensitivity, also known as anaphylactic shock and delayed hypersensitivity.
- Type of allergen- food allergy, pollen allergy, or flea allergy
- Clinical presentation-Allergic bronchitis or allergic atopic dermatitis
Get Your Pet the Right Allergy Management
At KKM Veterinary Clinic, we are passionate about giving pets the best quality of life by managing all types of allergies. Our doctors are highly trained to identify all sorts of allergies in numerous animals. Contact us to schedule an appointment in Franklin today.