Canine Atopic Dermatitis: Susceptibility and Tips to Combat
Canine Atopic Dermatitis usually begins in late summer and early fall as a dog is exposed to allergens that are either inhaled or absorbed through the skin. Also known as Canine Atopy, this chronic skin disease has an inherited tendency and occurs in both purebred and mixed breed dogs that are around 1 to 3 years of age. Symptoms of this skin disease tend to progress every year thereafter of the dog’s life.BREEDS HIGHLY SUSCEPTIBLE TO ATOPY
- English Setter
- Golden Retriever
- Irish Setter
- Labrador Retriever
- Lhasa Apso
- West Highland White Terrier
- Wire Fox Terrier
There are two ways to make a definitive diagnosis of Canine Atopic Dermatitis:
- Intra-dermal or blood allergen testing. These tests can be completed through the veterinary office, are very sensitive and able to identify the specific allergens causing the problem.
- Elimination of environmental allergens. This can be very difficult to do because allergens are everywhere, but there are methods to follow that can help to reduce the number of allergens a dog is exposed to, which will reduce the physical side effects of Atopy.
- Vacuum frequently
- Change furnace filters regularly
- Wash bedding in very hot water
- Use a plastic cover on dog’s bed
- Avoid dusty dog food
- Keep dog off of stuffed furniture
- Run air conditioners in hot weather
- Run dehumidifiers
- Keep dog indoors during high pollen alerts and when mowing the lawn
- After being outside, remove pollen from coat by wiping with damp towel and also thoroughly rinse and dry the dog’s feet
- Use hypoallergenic shampoos to rinse off the allergens, re-hydrate the skin, treat bacterial infection, and control seborrhea.
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