Pet Allergies Treatment Essex Junction VT
South Burlington , VT
Monday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Tuesday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Wednesday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Thursday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Friday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Saturday 7:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday 3:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Animal Boarding, Animal Flea Control, Animal Grooming, Animal Microchipping, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery, Veterinary Vaccinations
Essex Junction, VT
Routine small animal and exotic medical and surgical services.
South Burlington, VT
Monday 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday 7:30 AM - 7:30 PM
Wednesday 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday 7:30 AM - 7:30 PM
Friday 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Animal Flea Control, Animal Grooming, Animal Microchipping, Holistic Veterinary Medicine, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery
Full service feline only hospital and boarding
Mon. 7.30-7.00, Tues-Fri 7.30-5.00, Sat. 10.00-1.00 boarding only
South Burlington, VT
Creature Comforts—What's Itching Fluffy?
By Shawn Messonnier, DVM
Figuring out what’s gotten under your pet’s skin begins with what’s going on inside.
Cats and dogs can suffer terribly from allergies. And, just like people, they can react to any number of allergens—including substances in the environment like dust and pollen or foods like corn and wheat. But despite these similarities, allergies manifest quite differently in animals than they do in people. You may have a runny nose, itchy eyes, or clogged sinuses when you have an allergy attack, but cats and dogs experience most of their suffering in their skin. So, if Fluffy is scratching like crazy, licking her skin, or losing fur, chances are she’s allergic to something.
These symptoms can also point to infections or thyroid disease, so be sure to have a veterinarian examine your pet thoroughly to rule them out before moving forward with any allergy treatment. And don’t be surprised if things move slowly. So many sources of allergens exist, you may need to do a bit of sleuthing and resort to a process of elimination to pinpoint exactly what your pet is reacting to.
Conventional treatments abound for allergy symptoms, but they bring with them a host of potential problems. Start with a more holistic approach, which begins with identifying the allergen and making environmental, nutritional, and natural supplement modifications to build your pet’s resistance to it.
The conventional approach
The conventional approach to allergies relies heavily on the use of medications—mainly corticosteroids (such as prednisone) or antihistamines. While antihistamines are usually safer than corticosteroids, they still can present some real challenges. First, it may take some trial and error to find an antihistamine that works for your pet. Second, you’ll probably have to administer the medication two to three times a day. If you’ve ever tried to give your dog (or worse your cat!) a pill, you know what a pain that can be—for both of you. Finally, some pets get very drowsy with antihistamines, so you may be forced to try a number of options before you find one that’s acceptable.
Corticosteroids work extremely well and very quickly—usually within 24 hours—but unfortunately they carry with them a number of side effects ranging from the bothersome (like increased urination) to the potentially lethal (like immune-system suppression). Short-term use of corticosteroids may offer one avenue of treatment, even in a holistic approach, but long-term use is dangerous and ill advised, except when euthanasia is the only alternative. If your doctor suggests corticosteroids for your pet, make sure you’ve exhausted all natural alternatives first. If corticosteroids are the only answer, give them on a short-term, as-needed basis using as low a dose as possible.
The holistic approach
While the integrative approach doesn’t rule out medications like antihistamines or corticosteroids to treat acute flare-ups of itching, it focuses on reviewing your pet’s habits...
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