Itchy skin, greasy hair coat, ear infections, red skin, hot spots, shedding – these are all signs of allergies in dogs and cats. Sadly, allergies are a very common condition. And if we think about what our pets are experiencing while they are digging and scratching and chewing themselves raw, we can definitely sympathize with the misery they experience with allergies.
There are most commonly three kinds of allergies experienced by dogs and cats: hay fever/pollen allergy, flea allergy, and food allergy. We can’t really control the pollen in the air unless we move. However, we do have plenty of control over the other two allergies, food and fleas, so we can make our pets’ comfort much more bearable.
While I’m being a little tongue in cheek by saying we could move to a different climate to control the pollen, some people actually do so for their own allergies; what we can do immediately before moving out of state more frequent bathing. More foot baths. Because when our pets go outside, they walk on the grass which is covered with pollen, and then they come inside and clean their feet with their tongues, ingesting the pollen. Foot and body baths are one great step to help take care of hay fever allergies.
Depending on how you feel about flea control, fleas can be relatively easy to control. There are some heavy duty, fairly toxic, flea products on the market these days. While these products do an excellent job of keeping the fleas off of our pets, they also do a good job at creating side effects – anything from seizures to kidney failure to death. But they are really convenient so relied upon heavily by the general population. Believe it or not, the heavy duty chemicals can make some allergies worse! People who are a little bit more holistically minded understand that natural flea control is a constant process. Sort of like natural mosquito control is a constant process on ourselves. Persistence will pay off and learning what works also pays off. Reducing exposure is also critical – this means avoiding public areas with lots of grass. Dog parks maybe less of an issue as they tend to not have much grass in the dog area.
Food allergies really are the biggest consideration. If your dog or cat has chronic ear issues, it’s a very good sign that he has a food allergy. Food allergies can be to anything. Wheat, corn, beef, chicken, lamb, rice, even apple cider vinegar!
The more natural the food in the diet, the more simple the ingredients, the easier it is to figure out the cause of pets’ allergies. Understand that 98% of the pet food on the market is made from human food waste. Trash. What you and I would throw out and not even feed the dog. That’s what goes in the commercial pet food. That may be the cause of allergies!
There are many other things that stimulate allergies in our pets. The list is long but ranges from lawn chemicals, vaccines, medications, fabric softener, and many more.
If you’re thinking about your own health and ways to make it better, most of what you think about as applies to humans applies to animals. There are certain caveats that are specific to pets as opposed to humans, but we’re all mammals all living on the same planet and we all have similar responses. Dogs and cats are much smaller than we are, usually, therefore chemicals and pollutants accumulate in their body much faster than in ours. Detoxification is as critical to their lives as it is to ours, if not more.
Signs that detoxification may be appropriate: shedding, allergies, red staining either from tears or licking, constant ear infections, even cancer.
Allergies are quite complicated. But the longer we wait, the longer it takes to get to the underlying issue.
A sure sign your pet needs detoxification: allergies which develop at a later age or worsen with age. Worsening of allergies is related to toxic buildup in their bodies.
Detoxification reduces this buildup. Detoxification can be accomplished through diet, herbal and homeopathic modalities.
Your holistic veterinarian can help guide you on the detoxification path that is right for your pet and your situation. Allergies do not have to cripple your pet.