Dog Allergies – Shampoos, Rinses And Other Topical Treatments

There are numerous products including shampoos, rinses, sprays, lotions, creams and leave-on conditioners designed to help dogs with allergies.  These topicals contain anti-inflammatory ingredients (steroids, antihistamines, colloidal oatmeal, fatty acids, capsaicin and aloe vera) to make the patient more comfortable.  In my experience, the response to each is highly individualistic.  I see the best response in patients who have localized disease and owner’s […]

Dog Allergies – Fatty Acids

Fatty acids come in two varieties, omega-6 and omega-3.  Omega-6 fatty acids are contained in vegetable oils.  They are generally used to correct defects in the lipid barrier of skin damaged by allergies.  Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil and flaxseed, are best known for their anti-inflammatory effects.  Since most dogs with allergies can benefit from both, I […]

Dara Rybalov Wins The Cover Contest

Congratulations to Dara Rybalov, winner of the cover design cover contest.  Although I liked the artwork and creativity of all the entries, I felt Dara’s design best captured the spirit of the book.  I can’t wait to share it with you!  Coated With Fur:  A Vet’s Life will be published in April.       From a young age, Dara displayed an avid […]

Dog Allergies – Antihistamines

Antihistamines are a class of drug that decrease inflammation by inhibiting histamine release.  There are many drugs in this class including diphenhydramine (Benadryl), hydroxyzine (Atarax), chlorpheniramine (Chlortrimeton) and cetirizine (Zyrtec).  The most common side effect is sedation, dogs sleep more than normal.  This effect usually improves after a few days of therapy.  In rare individuals, the opposite […]

Dog Allergies – Treatment With Cyclosporine (Atopica)

Cyclosporine is an immunossupresant drug that is commonly used in allergic dogs.  Although the exact mechanism of action is not understood, it appears to decrease allergy symptoms by dampening the cell-mediated immune response.  The trade name for the veterinary version of the drug is Atopica.  I usually start therapy with a daily dose for 30 days […]

Dog Allergies – Allergen Specific Immunotherapy (Allergy Shots)

The best treatment for an allergic dog is to identify the cause and remove it from the environment.  I remember testing one Golden retriever and learning he was allergic to wool.  The owner got rid of the wool carpeting and wool blanket on his bed and he was cured.  Unfortunately, not all allergens can be removed.  […]