Pet Allergy – Diagnosis and Medications

Just as a human can develop allergies, domesticated animals can display adverse health symptoms from exposure to fleas, environmental and dietary allergens. Allergens can be inhaled, ingested or come in contact with a pet’s skin, resulting in a variety of digestive, respiratory or dermic symptoms. Thankfully, there are reliable testing methods available to accurately diagnose and treat allergies in pets. Potential solutions include pet medications and hypoallergenic diets.

Diagnosing Pet Allergies
Allergens and the reactions they cause may differ from animal to animal. Reactions to dietary allergens are uncommon, affecting less than 10% of dogs or cats. Environmental allergens include those that are found indoors, like dust mites and mold spores, and outdoors, like pollen spores and grass. Animals may also be exceptionally sensitive to bites from fleas. Even a small amount of flea saliva can cause widespread irritations on the animal.

Pets can display a number of symptoms that may be indicative of an allergic reaction, including:

• Vomiting
• Diarrhea
• Sneezing, coughing or wheezing
• Snoring caused by an inflamed throat
• Swollen paws or paw chewing
• Itchy ears or ear infections
• Itchy back or base of the tail

Some of these symptoms, though common allergic reactions, can also be indicative of other health issues. Before a pet is tested for allergies, they should be evaluated by a licensed veterinarian. After the vet has determined that the animal is suffering from allergen exposure, they can administer a sufficient allergy test.

Allergy Medications for Pets
Human medications, such as over-the-counter antihistamines, should never be given to a pet unless specifically prescribed by a licensed veterinarian. These drugs could cause adverse effect animals if they are taken alone or mixed with another medication. Extreme drowsiness, seizures or other symptoms may occur.

Pet medications will be prescribed based on individual symptoms, symptom severity and any preexisting conditions the animal may have. Regarding food allergies, the animal may be placed on a special diet that either limits or removes the reactive ingredient. Medications, like antihistamines, corticosteroids or allergy shots, may be prescribed to manage other allergies. For dermic reactions, topical medications such as shampoos or creams may also be prescribed.

Unfortunately, as of now, there is no cure for pet allergies. However, treatment methods, including pet medications, are available that can successfully manage symptoms and allow the animal to enjoy a better quality of life. A licensed veterinarian can accurately diagnose and appropriately treat pet allergies.

8 Tips to Cheer Up Depressed Pets

What if lately, you’ve been noticing your pet sleeps abnormally (more than usual), eats less, seems sad, and spends most of its time moping round the house. All these behaviors are totally opposite to his or her normal behavior. Without a doubt, you may start to worry! Depression is what your furry friend may be experiencing. This condition isn’t dissimilar to that of humans.

You’re used to seeing your pet happy because he or she is always there for you whenever you’re down. The mere thought of seeing your furry friend crestfallen makes you sick. Now it’s your turn to be there for him or her. How do you cheer up your best friend? What are some of the methods you can use?

If your pet is depressed, here are 8 strategies to use to cheer him/her up:

1. Spend ample time with your pet

One of the most effective ways to cheer up pets is by spending more time with them, especially when they’re depressed. Now, more than ever, he or she needs you – your undivided attention. Spending quality time together shows your pet how much you love and cherish him or her. To transit from the pits to his/her joyful, happy self, simply give your pet your support, care, and love.

2. Indulge your pet in outdoor activities

Whether you own a cat or a dog, taking him for a fun afternoon out in the park is an effective way of cheering him up. At first, the pet won’t seem enthusiastic. However, as you two enjoy each other’s company, you’ll be surprised by how jovial he’ll turn out to be. Some physical exercise, a change in surroundings, and some quality time with you, will go miles to bring back enthusiasm in your pet.

3. Show your pet you’re happy

Did you know pets and dogs are very intelligent when it comes to telling if you’re happy, just by looking at your face? Consequently, when he’s depressed, avoid frowning or showing him or her that you’re sad. An effective way to cheer up your dog is by staying happy yourself.

4. Socialize your pet

Is your dog or cat depressed because he or she lost a companion or family member? If yes, then you need to take your pet to the park, or to a daycare center, where he or she can socialize with others. According to studies, animals enjoy same-species companionship. Therefore, you shouldn’t hesitate to try out this strategy.

5. Reward your pet for positive behavior

This strategy is more of a positive reinforcement. When he or she shows any sign of getting over depression, you should give your pet a treat or pat on the head. It’s important to note that you shouldn’t be overly sympathetic as this will encourage others to remain depressed in order to enjoy the same attention. You need to show him or her how pleased you are anytime he or she eats meals properly, or plays with you in the park.

6. Comfort your pet with favorite toys

Does your cat or dog have a favorite toy? A great way to cheer up your cat is by giving him or her toys to play with. Most pets have a tendency to find comfort in familiarity. They’ll be more cheery if they are around their favorite toys.

7. Play him or her some music

In the same way music calms and soothes human beings, most pet owners admit that music is also magical to pets. Surprisingly, you’ll be able to lift up the mood of your pet by playing him or her some soothing music. Just ensure that the volume isn’t too high. The last thing you want is to make things worse.

8. Take your pet out for a ride

This strategy works wonders especially if your pet enjoys going for rides. If possible, bring your entire family with you when stepping out for a ride. In addition to enjoying the family’s company, he or she will also enjoy the fresh air.

Chances are very high that the depression affecting your pet will also affect you. Consequently, before the two of you sink into depression, you should act fast. You must find ways to cheer him or her up as soon as you can. The above are some simple ways you can cheer up your pet.