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How to Prevent and Manage Seasonal Allergies in Dogs and Cats

As we step into spring, the allergy season kicks in, affecting both humans and pets alike. With increased pollen in the air and more time spent outdoors, it can be tough to take in fresh air without experiencing discomfort. Your pets also suffer from springtime allergies, and it's essential to know how to keep them safe. Taking preventative measures is the key to ensuring your pet’s comfort during this time. Keep reading to learn how to prevent seasonal allergies in dogs and cats.

Understanding Seasonal Allergies

small mixed dog sitting on a floor with very red skin from allergies

It's interesting to note that pets with allergies tend to have a genetic predisposition to develop inflamed and itchy skin as a reaction to environmental allergens. The disease process is quite complex and affects multiple organ systems including the immune system, skin, and nervous system. When environmental allergens enter the skin, they move to the lymph nodes, causing the release of inflammatory cells that stimulate nerves and promote inflammation and itching. According to Merk Manual, Some breeds are at an increased risk of developing allergies compared to others:

  • Dogs: Chinese Shar-Peis, Wirehaired Fox Terriers, Golden Retrievers, Dalmatians, Boxers, Boston Terriers, Labrador Retrievers, Lhasa Apsos, Scottish Terriers, Shih Tzus, and West Highland White Terriers

  • Cats: Domestic shorthairs, Devon Rex, and Abyssinians

Common Allergens

Seasonal allergies are produced by several different allergens of various forms. The following are common seasonal allergies:

  • Pollen

  • Dust mites

  • Various plants

  • Various grass

  • Insect bites

  • Ragweed

  • Cedsar

Signs and Symptoms

While signs and symptoms of seasonal allergies in dogs and cats may vary between each pet as well as the severity of the allergy, the following symptoms are common ones for standard allergic reactions:

  • Excessive grooming

  • Itching

  • Scratching

  • Watery Eyes

  • Paw Chewing

  • Skin Irritation or Hotspots

  • Sneezing

  • Ear Infections

  • Respiratory Problems

  • Excessive Shedding

Preventive Measures and Treatments for Dogs and Cats

a golden retriever laying on the floor with his head in a person

While there is no one-and-be-done treatment for allergies, there are certain preventative measures you can take as well as ways to manage the condition for chronic allergies. By implementing these measures, you can aid your pet in giving them a better quality of life by reducing the pain that allergies cause.

  • Limiting Outdoor Exposure During Peak Pollen Times: Just like humans, dogs and cats can suffer from seasonal allergies triggered by pollen. Limit outdoor activities, especially during peak pollen times, which are typically in the early morning and late afternoon. Opt for indoor play or short walks during these periods to reduce allergen exposure.
  • Keeping Indoor Environment Clean and Allergen-Free: To reduce allergens at home, clean regularly and vacuum carpets and furniture with a HEPA filter. Wash your pet's bedding weekly and consider using allergen-proof covers. An air purifier with a HEPA filter can also help remove allergens from the air, providing relief for your pet.
  • Allergen Avoidance Strategies: The prevention of allergies in dogs and cats can potentially be achieved by limiting outdoor exposure during heightened allergy times. Maintain a clean, allergen-free environment by vacuuming regularly, washing bedding, and using an air purifier.
  • Grooming Routine: Maintaining a regular grooming routine for your pets can play a vital role in preventing and easing seasonal allergies. This includes frequent baths using appropriate products and regular brushing. To keep your furry friend fresh and clean between baths, you can opt for HICC Pet® Freshening Grooming Glove Wipes that are infused with fermented coconut. These wipes effectively remove dander, moisturize the skin, and clean allergens from the fur, making them an excellent choice for maintenance.
  • Diet and Nutrition: Preventing allergies in dogs and cats can involve dietary changes and supplements, like hypoallergenic diets or omega-3 fatty acids, known for their anti-inflammatory properties. These adjustments can support the immune system and alleviate allergy symptoms.
  • Supplements: Adding certain supplements such as omega-3 fatty acids can greatly assist in the management of seasonal allergies in dogs and cats. It can effectively reduce the inflammation from allergies which in turn helps the skin be less reactive to those allergens.
  • Veterinary Care: Regular veterinary check-ups are essential for preventing allergies in dogs and cats, offering opportunities to monitor symptoms and discuss treatment options. Allergy testing and treatments like shots or medication can be recommended by your vet to manage symptoms effectively and improve your pet's quality of life.
  • Flea Medication: With warm weather during peak allergy season comes fleas. Dogs and cats have the potential to have an allergy to flea saliva which can leave them miserable. Ensuring your dog or cat is always properly dosed with a fea medication can greatly improve their quality of life.

Pets who are in distress and pain from their allergies with excessive scratching and biting should be sent to the veterinarian for a stronger treatment.


Spring may have sprung but so have seasonal allergies. Seasonal allergies can run rampant for dogs and cats causing a variety of painful and irritating symptoms such as excessive itching and biting, red skin, hot spots, and watery eyes. While they are more common in certain breeds, any dog or cat can get seasonal allergies. By being able to understand the nature of these allergies, you can take proactive steps to prevent the impact of allergens as well as better manage them. To keep our pets healthy during spring and avoid allergies, we need to take preventative measures and be attentive to their needs.

This article only represents the author's personal views, and some contents refer to the Internet.

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