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Humans aren't only ones with seasonal allergies; your pet may have them too

By Melanie Falcon, Anchor / Reporter, @Melanie_Falcon, MFalcon@wfmz.com
Published On: Nov 05 2012 05:52:54 AM CST
Updated On: Nov 05 2012 06:46:54 AM CST

Pets can get allergies too

MACUNGIE, Pa. -

When the seasons change, it's not unusual for many to feel the symptoms of seasonal allergies. But your furry friend may have the same issues.

Local veterinarians say right now they're seeing a lot of pets coming in with the same problem: allergies! Yes, even your furry friend can get them when the seasons change.

"Over 50% of all household or domesticated animals have some sort of allergy," said Dr. Nancy Soares, veterinarian and owner of Macungie Animal Hospital.

She said the changing of the seasons right now is making it a busy time for pet allergies, especially in the Lehigh Valley ,which has a high number of allergens.

The number one sign of allergies for our four-legged friend is itching. "The most common clinical signs we see in pets, both dogs and cats, start at home. They get very itchy and start to scratch," explained Dr. Soares.

She said other things to watch out for are biting at their paws, licking, chronic ear infections, or upset stomachs.

If you suspect your pet has any type of allergy, bring them into the vet as soon as possible. Your vet will be able to diagnose the allergy through an exam and lengthy conversation, or possibly testing.

Dr. Soares explained, "One of the most common that veterinary dermatologists do is something called intradermal skin testing. If you're familiar with that in humans, it's where you inject very small minute, concentrated substances into a dog's skin, and in a period of about 20 minutes time, we can tell them what they're highly allergic to."

Once they're diagnosed, she said, depending what type of allergy it is, your pooch or kitty may be given a vaccine, antihistamine, antibiotic, or topical ointment.