Saturday, September 29, 2012

Allergies and your Labrador Retriever

Labrador retrievers have been one of the most popular adoption dog breeds in America for the last twenty years. This large and lovable creature makes for a companion that will keep you company, especially when you’re feeling a little under the weather.

So, what happens when your Labrador is feeling a little sneezy this fall season? Allergies are on the rise for people and dogs alike, often resulting in itchy, sneezing, and runny nose signs. We don’t always consider our companion to have such problems, but it is far more prominent than one might think.

A dog suffering from allergies show a variety of signs, such as red eyes, dry and flakey skin (dandruff), along with a runny nose. In some cases, they may even have diarrhea or vomiting issues. This could result from many causes, from food to fleas and so much more. As your dog’s owner and protector, it is your duty to be aware of what is going on in your dog’s body and the best ways to address these issues so they can get back to sniffing around without sneezing everywhere.

In the air tonight

Dust, pollen, and even the debris released during the fall season’s dropping leaves and late blooming can irritate anyone’s allergies. These can cause a dog’s eyes to turn red and their nose to run. Sneezing is commonly associated, especially if they are lying on their back waiting for a belly rub.

There are other outdoor issues, such as fleas which can also stimulate allergic reactions. Normally, the irritation would be limited to the area of a bite, in which case the best method of treatment is to keep the fleas and ticks off them in the first place.

Skin allergies are hardest to spot because of a dog’s coat. Redness and swelling may be hidden by fur, so it’s always good to inspect your dog’s skin regularly. This is especially important if they are scratching or nibbling at a specific area constantly, such as paws, hind end, or ears. But, if skin allergies persist, dietary supplements such as omega fatty acids and brewer’s yeast can help keep their skin moist and healthy to help reduce the irritation of allergic reactions.

What did I eat?

Allergic reactions are normally on the outside, but dogs can eat foods that don’t agree with them as well. Dogs are renowned for their hearty appetites and will eat indiscriminately, which means they won’t necessarily stop eating it just because they’re allergic to it. If your dog is having issues with diarrhea or is vomiting, double check their diet. This is especially true during social events where people tend to sneak a dog some human food. Foods like tomatoes and melons tend to lead to allergic reactions in dogs as well as humans. This can often lead to trouble breathing and swallowing, so be prepared to treat your dog’s reaction. In emergency cases, dog allergy medication is the best bet. These often contain diphenhydramine HCL (Benadryl). Be sure to consult with your vet to ensure proper dosage and help target the allergic reaction.

The Labrador retriever is a magnificent friend, but allergies can definitely put a damper on anyone’s day. Be sure you pay attention for any behavioral changes in your dog and address them accordingly to ensure they stay happy and healthy in their home.

Allergies and your Labrador Retriever is a guest post by Brandon Kennington

Author Bio:

Brandon Kennington is the inventor and owner of the Porch Potty – the world’s first automatic grass dog litter box. As dog owner and a busy business owner, Brandon invented the Porch Potty when he didn’t want his dog to have to wait all day to go. Porch Potty admires dog owners and also provides great tips for dog lovers on the Porch Potty Blog.

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