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Laguna Hills, CA 92653

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The Causes and Effects of Pet Allergies

Pet allergies can cause a variety of symptoms, ranging from mild irritations that respond to animal dermatology to life-threatening reactions. Our veterinarian in Laguna Hills, Dr. Kerolos, can help your pet recover from an allergic reaction and avoid future allergy problems.

An allergic reaction is the result of the body's natural immune response to any triggers seen as potential invaders. Many of the triggers that set off pet allergies are in fact completely harmless, but the symptoms produced by the allergic reaction may not be. The itchy, swollen skin that frequently results from an allergy not only makes your pet miserable, but it may also compel him to scratch, bite or lick the irritation obsessively. Eventually this attack on the skin causes open wounds that allow bacteria to enter, setting the stage for localized or systemic infections. Many of the animal dermatology cases seen by our veterinarian in Laguna Hills call for allergy testing and treatment in addition to relief of the immediate symptoms.

One of the most difficult aspects of treating pet allergies is figuring out exactly what your animal is actually allergic to. Pet allergies tend to have many of the same common triggers as humans allergies, such as food, environmental pollutants, airborne molds or pollen, and substances that irritate the skin on contact. But many of these triggers cause similar or overlapping symptoms, most notably skin problems. For instance, food allergies may cause skin redness on an animal's ears, face, abdomen, tail and/or feet -- symptoms you might normally associate with an external environmental irritant such as poison oak or airborne pollutants. Food allergies may also create digestive issues including gas, diarrhea, weight loss, and vomiting. The confusing array of symptoms can make it impossible for you to tell precisely what triggers are bothering your pet.

Allergy Care from Our Laguna Hills Veterinarian

The smartest strategy in the fight against potential allergy is to bring your pet to Trinity Pet Hospital for an evaluation. Our veterinarian in Laguna Hills will ask you about your pet's indoor/outdoor lifestyle, past incidences of allergic reactions or other health problems, and your pet's current diet. (Even small changes in pet food ingredients can introduce new allergens, or your pet may develop an allergy against an ingredient that never troubled him before.) We can prescribe an elimination diet that employs different proteins and carbohydrates until we have eliminated the allergy symptoms. If your pet has been exposed to an outdoor irritant, our animal dermatology services can ease the pain, swelling, and itching. Once skin testing reveals the allergen at the heart of the problem, our veterinarian in Laguna Hills can administer allergy shots to reduce your pet's hypersensitivity to it.

Contact our Laguna Hills veterinarian to schedule a consultation for your pet's allergy problem. From animal dermatology to nutritional counseling, we can provide the right solution!