DEALING WITH ITCHY PETS

ITCHY PETS

Spring is a fantastic time of the year but can often present some challenges for the health of our pets. One of the more common problems we see at this time of the year is itchy skin – especially in dogs.

One of the reasons dogs and cats may itch at this ticks.

Warming temperatures provide ideal conditions for hatching of flea and tick eggs in the environment which can lead to skin inflammation when juvenile fleas and ticks bite our pets and cause subsequent itching.

Fleas commonly cause dogs and cats to itch around the base of the tail. Thankfully there are many very effective preventative medications available for fleas and ticks in both dogs and cats which can eliminate this problem and also avoid the life-threatening risk of paralysis tick envenomation.

Another common issue in spring is allergic skin disease (or atopy). Dogs can be allergic to pollens and grasses just like us and this can often lead to very intense itching.

Commonly affected areas for atopy are the feet, armpits and hairless areas of the groin. Atopy can often lead to recurrent ear infections especially in dogs that like to swim. Recent advances in medical therapy of this condition have made it a lot easier to control but very difficult to cure.

Scratching can also lead to secondary bacterial skin infection which further increases the itch, leading to a vicious cycle of itching and scratching. Often antibiotics and medicated shampoos are required to bring this under control, it is imperative in these cases that the underlying cause of the itchy skin is also addressed.

Don’t wait until itchy skin causes both you and your pet to tear their hair out – call your local vet for advice about this very common problem. sydneyanimalhospitals.com.au

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