Flea dermatitis in dogs, commonly referred to as flea allergy, is the most frequently found form of allergy identified in canines and is caused by a flea bite. It's the leading cause of itchiness in dogs, and it just takes the bite of one flea to bring on an allergy on the dog's skin. Flea allergies may cause the dog to itch and scratch for somewhere from a couple of hours to a few days and could take three days to a week to show up after the initial bite from a flea.

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The Causes of Dermatitis in Dogs

Fleas can only be noticed on an animal when they're feeding. Just like a mosquito, a flea will bite a canine and draw in blood for nutrition. While the flea does this, they inject a small measure of saliva under your pet's skin that can consist of up to fifteen individual allergy causing substances. If your dog is sensitive to any one of the allergens that have been injected by the flea, it will actuate an allergic response that results in the canine itching. Virtually one half of all canines will come down with flea dermatitis, and while it is more often found in adult dogs, pups can also develop flea dermatitis.

Diagnosis of Flea Dermatitis in Dogs and Recognition of Its Warning Signs

Dog owners usually aren't aware that their beloved pet has fleas due to their relatively small size and because of how challenging they can be to eliminate. Making the diagnosis of flea allergies even more difficult is the fact that it only takes a single flea to induce flea dermatitis in dogs and the warning signs may not be observable for nearly 7 days after the flea bite took place. There doesn't have to be a flea infestation to cause allergies in your dog. The signs of allergies in dogs can include intense itching and scratching or chewing on the skin and coat, inflaming of the skin, rashes, and reddening of the skin. Due to the continual scratching and itching, loss of fur across the animal's torso, primarily near the region commencing in the middle part along the spine to the beginning of the tail and also in their hind legs area, may also be a very good indication of flea dermatitis. A vet can also discover flea dermatitis in your dog using sophisticated blood and skin screens to locate specific allergy causing substances and to rule out other possibilities such as bacterial, fungal and yeast infections.

Flea Treatment Begins With a Good Flea Control Plan

The first step to a successful sort of flea treatment requires exterminating fleas both on your pet and in the pet's nearby environment. Even if there is a great flea eradication plan installed, it is not unusual for dog's to still experience an occasional bite from a flea. Canines that are frequently outdoors will pose an even tougher challenge.

Desensitization and Traditional Drugs as Treatments for Dermatitis in Dogs

A vet might often try the use of desensitization as a form of dog dermatitis treatment. This necessitates injecting the animal with minor traces of flea antigen over a prolonged amount of time, potentially for the rest of the animal's lifetime. This method of treatment is generally a success in almost one half of the patients, and can become quite costly over the long term. Antihistamines and traditional drugs, like cortisone, are also ordinarily suggested by vets to address flea allergies in dogs. These forms of treatment can often give relief for flea allergies; nonetheless, it has been found that there are significant side effects associated with using steroids. In the long run, this variety of treatment might be more harmful than beneficial.

Natural Relief for Flea Dermatitis in Dogs

Because of the side effects associated with taking steroids, many of dog owners are now using homeopathic cures for flea bite allergies in dogs. There are many natural ingredients in these holistic formulas that are both effective and safe for your pet. German Chamomile has been utilized to clean and soothe the skin for many centuries. Some other herbs have also been found to contribute to improving overall skin health and provide soothing and restoration benefits to the skin, and include Witchhazel, Cleavers and Marigold.

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Symptoms and Ways to Avoid Flea Allergy in Dogs

Fleas are a serious concern that all pet owners ultimately have to deal with. Anyone who owns a dog has almost certainly have faced the difficult battle of learning how to treat dog fleas, a battle that has usually proved to be harder than it looks.

Fleas are not merely an issue because they harass and cause hours of frustrating itching and scratching for your pet, but they might also trigger more critical concerns including flea bite dermatitis, canine tapeworm infestations and anemia in critical occurrences.
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Owing to their remarkable resistance, fleas are inordinately difficult to manage. The female might lay in excess of 2,000 eggs during her lifecycle, which suggests that infections can strike rapidly and the eggs she laid can continue to exist for a long duration in nature while just waiting on an acceptable target. Therefore it's important to get rid of both the fleas on the dog and the fleas making their home in the pet's living area. The top areas to search for fleas are bed linens, rugs, carpets and sand.

How to Exterminate Fleas

In order to successfully terminate fleas on your dog and in his habitats, it is imperative to know the life cycle of the flea. There are 4 stages in the lifespan of the flea. Like the majority of insects, the fleas originates from the egg phase, turns into larva, then matures to the pupa phase until finally reaching the adult stage.

The Flea Egg Phase

The fleas eggs are pale in color and are so small that they're difficult to notice without using a magnifying glass. Though the eggs are first laid on the pet's skin, a lot will with time drop onto the ground to resume their lifecycle. Close to 50 percent of the entire flea populace consists of eggs. Dependant upon the environmental conditions, the eggs hatch in somewhere between a couple of weeks to a month. The higher the heat and moisture in the surroundings, the quicker the eggs will hatch.

The Flea's Larva Stage

When the flea egg hatches, it enters the larvae phase where it grows to roughly 1/4 inch in length. The flea larvae subsist on organic waste substances and on the feces of the adult flea. They're uncomfortable in vivid light and are likely to go into hiding deep within their current environment, if possible in a balmy and muggy location. Climate controlled homes are the perfect location for the life cycle of the flea to thrive. Outdoors, larval maturity will only take place in wet, shaded areas.

The Flea Pupae Phase

After entering the pupae phase, the flea pupae form a silken and gummy protective cocoon. The chrysalis immediately configures a useful hiding spot as it gets sheltered by debris and soil. If encouraged by warmth, carbon dioxide or by physical pressure, like that in a hot and humid setting, an adult flea could come out from the cocoon in as fast as 5 to 10 days. When the adult flea surfaces from the cocoon, it will live for just a couple of days unless it's able to find a host. Pre-emerged adult fleas are able to subsist in the cocoon for up to nine months. This is noteworthy for the reason that adult fleas still alive in the cocoon are resilient to insecticides applied to the environment and can surface a considerable time after you utilize insecticides in your house.

The Flea's Adulthood Phase

After the adult flea surfaces from the cocoon, it must promptly get a host because it has to have blood in order to live. A couple of days after finding a fitting host, the female flea will start to lay just about 40 eggs every day. Adult fleas can survive up to 3 weeks. The whole life cycle of a flea can be ended in as little as 2 to 4 weeks, or as long as ten months contingent upon its surrounding climate.

Topical Flea Treatments for Dogs

There are countless sprays, shampoos, powders and on the spot preparations around to liberate your pet of fleas. Be sure to talk with a veterinarian to pick the most successful and reliable flea pesticides for your home and canine.

Indoor Flea Treatments for Dogs

Nearly all pesticides are simply effective against the adult flea, but environmental products are becoming more highly developed. A veterinarian can provide you with flea treatments for dogs that have insect growth regulators which will help get rid of the flea eggs and larvae. Before spreading any indoor insecticide, it is a good idea vacuum your carpeting and rugs to entice the pre-adult fleas to emerge from their protective cocoon. Be certain to throw away the vacuum bag after using it. You must also clean all bedding your dog has slept on.

Outdoor Flea Treatments for Dogs

Concentrate on darkened, sheltered spots. Spray a pesticide consisting of an insect growth regulator and duplicate it every 2-3 weeks for 3 to 5 treatments.

The newer oral and topical flea treatments for dogs will really aid you in taking care of the flea problem. With determination and fortitude, you and your pet should be rid of fleas in a jiffy!
Have you begun to notice your dog scratching and itching excessively? Is the scratching causing exposed wounds and disappearance of hair on your dog? If so, this is a sound indication that your canine might be suffering from dog allergies. Dogs do not have the characteristic red eyes and a watery nose like we do when we are dealing with an allergy. Additional warning signs could include excessive licking of a specific area, or gnawing of the paws until they bleed.

What Causes Dog Allergies?

An allergic reaction occurs when an animal's immune system overreacts to specific substances. The body will then manufacture antibodies as a type of protection after the trigger of an allergy passes into the body. The antibodies then connect to immune cells in the skin and various organs of the body. So, when the allergens progressively infiltrate the tissue, the antibodies prompt immune cells to discharge virulent substances (referred to as histamines) into the nearby tissue. This will then cause swelling and dog itching.
There are several things to take into account when trying to pinpoint the root of skin allergies in canines. An allergy which affects a canine's skin is generally brought on by at least one of these: airborne particles, fleas, and food.

Flea Dermatitis also known as Flea Allergy is frequently brought about by the saliva of the flea. This is why it is especially important to rid your dog of fleas regularly.

An atopic allergy is triggered by the inhaling of airborne allergens in the environment, like pollen, mold spores, tobacco smoke and dust, instigate atopic allergies. If a dog has pollen allergies, the pet will exhibit warning signs, even if kept in the house as the allergens will come inside. Coughing, wheezing and sneezing generally are symptoms of this sort of allergy.

Food allergies are the third most common form of dog allergy. The most likely reasons for food allergies in dogs include: milk, chicken, corn, soy, beef, eggs and wheat. Vomiting and diarrhea generally go along with this sort  of dog allergy.

Contact allergy is the least seen sort of allergy in dogs and is triggered by coming into contact with something. Triggers may include grass, plastic and wool. A few dogs can suffer from allergic reactions to specific chemicals in the household, but this isn’t very common.

Identifying Dog Allergies

A veterinarian should be able to identify the problem, though it may require a system of elimination to identify the source of the skin allergy and could even refer the dog to a veterinarian dermatologist. In the event where fleas are ruled out, the animal could be put on an elimination food regimen for a few months. The dog is given food it has not eaten before, such as poultry, veal, and potatoes, with the old food being reintroduced in stages until the allergy returns.
The allergen is considered to be one or more ingredients if the dogs scratching is decreased by about one half of what it was before. When checking for contact and atopic allergies, vets use an intradermal allergy examination that works by slightly tranquilizing the animal with small quantities of possible allergens that are injected into the skin on the shaved section. If the animal is allergic to a particular substance, the skin will become inflamed surrounding the area of injection.

Treatments for Skin Allergies in Dogs

Keeping the dog away from allergens and treating the symptoms of dog allergies are the soundest approaches to treatment. Remedies such as antihistamines and steroids are often advocated to alleviate effects of scratching and inflammation in pets, but like all drugs they can be accompanied by risky side effects and the long-term effects are still undetermined.

Extensive treatment using steroids is not recommended for these treatments work by suppressing the immune system. Extensive steroid use may eventually leave your dog vulnerable to diabetes, infections and further conditions.

Natural Remedies

Fortunately for dog owners, there are a lot of safe and natural remedies for skin allergies in dogs. Melaleuca alternifolia commonly applied as a topical to stimulate healthy skin and keeping your pet’s skin clear while Althaea officinalis root is an outstanding and well known treatment for reinvigorating the skin. Homeopathic treatments such as Ledum and Apis have terrific healing qualities and are particularly beneficial in soothing swollen and irritated skin, or small bites and sores.

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