Atopy in Dogs. What is this?

by admin on March 27, 2013

GROOMING DOG BLOG PHOTOWhat exactly is Atopy?  Atopy is an itchy inherited skin disease, like allergies.  Atopy  is contacted through the air by absorption via the respiratory tract or contact via the skin.  The triggers of Atopic reactions are called allergies.

The most common allergic reaction for dogs is through flea allergy dermatitis.  Atopy in dogs is the second most common allergic reaction.  Although many dog parents use antihistamines to combat this issue, it’s not very effective.  And can make for a drowsy dog.  Your vet is well equipped with advise on this topic.

Vets have concluded that Immunotherapy is the best form of treatment for Atopy.  What is Immunotherapy and when and why should I consider this?

1.  Immunotherapy is shots given to a dog with severe allergies that can’t be contained by topical medications or pills. This treatment requires a series of shots to be given by a vet to your dog, so they can find the itching culprit.  Just like in humans, when we get a series of tests done for our allergies and have allergy shot in order to help us maintain a healthier life.

2.  Immunotherapy is not suitable for dogs that have food allergies, which is important to know.

3.  This type of therapy requires the owner to be prepared for a long periods, where shots are given to their dog.  The vet will asses the frequency of the shots.  This treatment could range from 3 to 6 months.

4.  After the dog becomes more resilient to the irritant, the vet might lessen the shot regiment.  You should always keep a close eye on your dogs progress.  In the beginning of the treatment, they can itch more, which would be normal. Your vet is injecting culprit allergies in to the dog’s system.  However, if you feel distress over this, contact your vet always for a discussion.

5.  Are  there any serious side effects with Immunotherapy?  No,  (see #4), however the dog could develop an allergic reaction at the injection site.

6.  There is a high success rate with this type of therapy, which is good.  Just note that this is a long treatment process and you should always discuss additional treatment in conjunction with this protocol with your vet. This particular technique is effective in 60 to 80 percent of atopic dogs.

7.  It may happen that your dog doesn’t respond well to this type of treatment.  This is where you and your vet will have that discussion concerning other options.

I hope you found this blog topic helpful.  Follow me on facebook:  Alanna Chasin aka The Dog Buddha.  Sign up for my blog, it’s easy! Find my photo and follow the prompts.

Hugs and Licks. Until next time.







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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Loren Blumberg March 27, 2013 at 8:39 pm

Very interesting topic, I have not encountered such a thing with our animals in the past. The information is much appreciated!


admin March 29, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Thank you Loren for the read. Glad you liked this 1. We have had this issue here at daycare with extreme itching. Cheers!


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