Can Pets Have Allergies?

You’re not the only one suffering from allergies this summer! Your pet may be experiencing uncomfortable seasonal allergy symptoms as well. 

Your pet needs appropriate medical care to prevent and minimize the discomfort that develops due to seasonal allergies. Here’s what you should know to keep your furry friend comfortable during allergy season and beyond.

Signs Your Pet Has Allergies

Pets experience allergies a bit differently than humans. Rather than the respiratory tract symptoms that people experience, dogs and cats are prone to skin irritation and inflammation called allergic dermatitis. 

You may notice your pet struggling with very itchy skin and the following symptoms: 

  • Scratching excessively
  • Biting and chewing certain spots
  • Rubbing against vertical or horizontal surfaces to stop itching 

Unfortunately, this itch and scratch cycle causes your pet’s skin to become even more inflamed and tender to the touch. Your pet will eventually experience hair loss, scabbing, and open sores on the skin if his allergies are not treated. 

How to Treat Your Pet’s Seasonal Allergies

There are many steps you can take at home to fight your pet’s allergies. First, give your pet weekly baths with a grain-free shampoo. This helps to wash away allergens on the coat and skin. Baths are best for dogs who spend time playing outside every day. 

It’s important not to over-bathe your dog and cause dry skin, so try supplementing full baths with foot soaks. Soak your dog’s paws each time he returns inside. This will reduce the amount of allergens being tracked into your house and spread through the indoor environment. 

Other at-home preventative steps include carefully vacuuming and cleaning the places in your home where your pet spends the most time, using an anti-inflammatory diet that is low in grain content, and adding omega-3 fatty acids into your pet’s diet to decrease inflammation. 

Of course, taking your pet to his vet is another essential step to fighting seasonal allergies. Your experienced and compassionate vet at Affordable Pet Hospital in Tampa, Florida. will help you identify which supplements, enzymes, diet choices, and other changes will help your pet enjoy the most relief possible. Call Affordable Pet Hospital today at (813) 991-9898 to make an appointment.

The Dangers of Rat Poison to Dogs and Cats

Rats are some of the worst and most unwanted rodents, especially within your home. If you discover that rats are scuttling around your property, you may need to use rat poison to eliminate the infestation. 

Rat poison, also known as a rodenticide, is a chemical product formulated to kill rodents like rats. The chemicals used in rat poison are effective against rats, but unfortunately, they are also highly toxic to dogs and cats.

Even worse, rat poison often carries an attractive flavor in order to trap rats. As a result, it’s common for pets to accidentally ingest rat poison and become very sick. Make sure you understand the risks of rat poison and how to help your dog or cat recover if he becomes poisoned. Read more

Why It’s Important To Have an Emergency Vet Lined Up

When it comes to health and safety, our pets are just like us. Even if they’re generally healthy, dogs and cats are still vulnerable to unexpected illnesses and accidents. 

So how should you react when your dog gets a hold of a bag of chocolate, or your cat suffers a broken leg? An emergency vet is the best specialist to handle these frightening emergencies. 

What Is an Emergency Vet, Exactly?

An emergency veterinarian is a trained specialist who provides medical care to animals, usually when there’s no time for planning beforehand.  Read more

How To Do a Social Distancing Vet Visit

The coronavirus pandemic has made common errands more difficult, including your pet’s regular visit to the vet. Fortunately, it is possible to enjoy a socially distanced vet visit and get your pup or cat the care she needs. 

Ask About Curbside Care

Just like clothing retailers and grocery stores, veterinarians have adapted to the times by offering curbside services during the pandemic. You may be able to drive up to the clinic at the time of your appointment and wait for a staff member to examine your pet from the comfort of your vehicle.  Read more

Common Minor Pet Health Issues That Can Be Addressed During Telemedicine

Telemedicine has been a standing practice amongst general medical providers, but most people don’t think about using the service for their pets. Some health conditions can be diagnosed and treated with discussion and observation of symptoms without an exam, just as telemedicine for humans. Often, the routine visits you make to your vet can be handled over the phone or by video chat. Here are a few of the most common health issues that can be addressed during veterinary telemedicine appointments.

Chronic health management

If your pet requires ongoing treatment for a medical condition, it may be possible to handle follow ups and prescription refills without a physical examination. The vet will ask you a series of questions to determine effectiveness of current treatment and may make additional recommendations. Read more

The Future of Telemedicine in Veterinary Practices

Let’s face it. There has long been a need for telemedicine in veterinary practices. There are a lot of pet owners out there who are unable to get out easily or at all, and telemedicine when possible can be a huge blessing for such home-bound people. Unfortunately, it took the pandemic to make it clear that telemedicine definitely has its place in veterinary medicine, just as it does in other types of medicine being offered to patients across the country.

But will these telemedicine trends stick around? Probably, but some things are going to have to be ironed out first. Read more

Behavioral Changes that Point to Physical Health Issues

Did you know that your pet is talking to you all the time? You may not always be able to understand them, but your pet knows what they need, and they will try to tell you as their caregiver. If you write off their behavior as quirkiness, you might be putting off an important health issue. Here are some behavioral changes that will tell you that you need to take your pet to the vet.

Changes in eating habits

Is your pet suddenly refusing to eat? Pets do get bored with their food, and sometimes they will refuse to eat because they miss one of their humans or other emotional distress. But often your pet’s refusal to eat their food has more to do with their stomach and potential digestive problems. You should get your pet checked out any time their appetite changes. Read more

Your Pet’s Wellness and Vaccination Schedule

You love your pet, and you want them to lead a long, healthy life. If you want to keep your dog or cat around as long as possible, you should make their health and wellness one of your top priorities, but how often does your pet really need to go to the vet? What shots do they need and when? Here’s what you need to know.

The First Year of Life

During the first year of your pet’s life, they should be seen by the vet about once a month. The vet will be able to use these frequent visits to track your pet’s growth and progress and address any concerns quickly as they arise. Read more

How to Protect Your Pet from Ticks While Camping

If you like to take your pet camping with you, you need to take some additional precautions against fleas and ticks. The methods you use for flea and tick prevention at home may not be sufficient to prevent ticks while camping in the woods, where ticks are everywhere. There are some very good ways that you can help protect your pet from ticks.

Flea Collars

Even if you normally use an oral medication or once-a-month topical application, it doesn’t hurt to throw a flea and tick collar on your pet when you go camping. This can give them an extra layer of protection and discourage ticks from going to the most common places — like inside ears. Read more

How to Naturally Cut Down on Fleas in the Home

More and more people are becoming eco-conscious and looking for ways to cut chemicals out of their lives. The truth is that fleas have been a problem for millennia, and the chemical combinations most often used today are less than a century old. Do you think the people of the past just put up with them? There are a lot of natural home remedies for fleas, but thanks to eco-friendly manufacturers there are also some great products that take out the guesswork. Here are some options.

Dawn and Vinegar

Bathe your pet in Dawn dish soap and rinse with apple cider vinegar. This will kill the fleas on your pet, but it will not repel them. This is only the first step. You’ll have about a day, maybe two, to get the rest of your home treated. Although Dawn is not necessarily “all natural,” it is well established as an eco-friendly product. Read more