Common Summer Allergies in Dogs
A fawn Frenchie enjoying a patch of flowers. (Source)
Seasonal allergies in dogs are typically caused by allergens they inhale or come in contact with their skin. These are irritating and cause various types of inflammatory responses. In the summer, these are the most common causes of dog allergies:
- Flea bites
- Grass pollen
- Mold & mold mites
- Dust & dust mites
- Weeds & fungi
Signs Your Dog is Having an Allergic Reaction
A sneezing Siberian Husky laying on a patch of grass and flowers. (Source)
Summer allergies in dogs most commonly manifest in the skin. You’ll notice that your dog is scratching excessively and might even be licking and nipping on their skin. You might also notice rashes or redness, especially along their belly and groin.
Seasonal allergies might also cause redness and swelling in your dog’s eyes, paws, and muzzle. In some cases, allergens could cause difficulty breathing, which may look like heavy panting or even wheezing. In very acute cases, dog allergies can cause anaphylactic shock.
How to Address Dog Allergies
Roxy & Stella the Staffies wearing the Athleisure Harness Set in Pink and Lilac.
Allergic reactions in dogs are generally treated with antihistamines. The type and strength will depend on the symptoms involved.
Depending on your dog’s condition, your vet might also prescribe some creams to apply on inflamed areas or recommend medicated baths. Also, make sure you only use soft, cushioned harnesses to keep the skin from further irritation.
If you have a dog that’s prone to allergies, you should also try to prevent reactions. It’s not always easy to avoid summer allergies since irritants are typically environmental. Nevertheless, you can select activities that lower your dog's risk of exposure.
For example, you can opt to swim at a pool rather than hike through a meadow. But the best thing you can do to avoid severe reactions is to bathe your dog after spending time outside to minimize prolonged exposure to their environmental allergens.
Are Dog Allergies Serious?
Siggi the Brindle Frenchie wearing the Green Athleisure Harness Set for a summer walk.
Allergic reactions in dogs can be anything from mildly uncomfortable to life-threatening. For most dogs, summer allergies manifest in the skin.
Although this might not seem serious, your pup’s insistent scratching, licking, and nipping could easily lead to secondary skin infections. It’s always better to get your dog to the vet immediately to seek relief and keep your dog from scratching altogether.
On the other hand, summer allergies that manifest as respiratory symptoms can be much more serious. This is especially true for flat-faced breeds like pugs and bulldogs since they are prone to breathing difficulties. If your dog has an acute allergic reaction that affects their ability to breathe, treat it as an emergency and get to a vet right away.
Although a dog allergy can be worrisome, don't let it ruin your summer! By all means, enjoy the great outdoors and make the most of the sunny weather. Just make sure you keep an eye out and take extra steps to make sure your pup is safe a healthy. And, don’t hesitate to head to the vet if your dog shows signs of an allergic reaction.