Hi everyone! I have a dog who is three years old with seasonal allergies. For the past two years, she's been getting benadryl (OK'd by her vet). When her allergies started this year in early March, we started to give her benadryl again, and she's been fine up until now. The poor thing is so itchy! She's 64 lbs, and I give her one benadryl three times a day. We have her yearly checkup coming up in a few weeks, but just wanted to see if anyone else on here has a dog with allergies, and if so, what you do to help ease the itching. I'd rather not give her steroids...unless really necessary.
I have one dog thats got that allergy, and once a year, a trip to vet for a shot, cures the whole spring/summer/fall...vet did say, you can not give this shot very often, I beleive its a steroid shot, but, she doesn't scratch, bite and chew/ and the licking intense....its works wonders...I am not a fan of going to the vet for shots, but I can say this one particular issue the shot works wonders, its like night and day, the before shot and after..
Much luck to you and yours, and welcome to the site, you will meet wonderful people here and recieve many suggestions.
I have an itchy baby too. 4yr old Beagle. I just had him allergy tested last month.
In March he had an especially bad episode that resulted in a very bad rash and an eye infection due to the allergies so my regular vet said I should take him to the doggie dermatologist. We have a fantastic vet hospital in our area w/ all kinds of specialists. But it can be pretty pricey.
The first app. I had was a consult, where the doc did some basic tests for yeast/bacteria. I also was giving mine Benedryl and found out the amount I was using wasn't enough. My baby probably weighs 10-15 pounds more than yours but she told me to give 2-3 , 25mg benedryl up to 3x day. The 1 25mg pill wasn't doing anything. So I would suspect that 1 pill for yours at 64lbs probably isn't enough, maybe 2 pills. But of course run that by your vet. Also the fish oil capsules i was giving him(the people kind) weren't high enough either. The fish oil works in combination w/ the antihistamine(benedryl) to reduce the inflammation and itchies.
The fish oil i was was using had 180mg EPA, and 120mgDHA per cap. the fish oil i got from them has 540mg EPA, and 350mg DHA per cap. And for the weight of our pups the bottle says 60-90lbs give 2 caps orally once a day. I can still buy the people kind after I'm done with the bottle from the vet but I just have to look at labels and get a higher amount. The people kind is much cheaper of course.
OK, so after the first visit she also put him on 2 antibiotic meds. for his skin problems, 1 was an antifungal and the other antibacterial. I already had the Malaseb shampoo which is FANTASTIC for itchy pups. So she gave me Dermal Soothe rinse off conditioner also. These 2 can be found online much cheaper then at the vet also.
And we set up an app. for his testing one month later. The dog can't have had any kind of steroid medication 6-8wks before the allergy test or it's basically wasting money as it can mess up the test. And mine had been given a steroid med for his eye infection a few weeks before, hence waiting the month.
For the test he had to be dropped off early and stayed for most of the day, they test them for 55-60 known allergens. And they are rated on a scale of 0-4, 4 being the worst. My boy is allergic to A LOT. Many grasses, weeds, dusts, molds, wools etc.. AND CATS, LOL.... I couldn't believe he was allergic to cats.....too funny. Thank god I don't have any....but we do have feral ones around the neighborhood.
So now i start the allergy shots. This can take up to a year to see any benefit, but it can help up to 75% of dogs. The shots are basically the things he is allergic too, they formulate them according to his allergies and you start out at a very low amount. I have 3 bottles, each stronger than the last. These 3 bottles will last 6 months. Then I just get another bottle at the highest amount. It's a strict schedule with the shots, such and such an amount every 3 days, then 10 days then 20 days depending on your pups situation. The shots are basically like people getting an immunization shot for diseases, etc. where you are giving them very small amounts of what they are allergic too and hopefully they will build up an immunity to them. Of course during the shots you have to be aware of any side effects and they will alter the meds as needed, or keep you on the lower dosage longer etc.. I had an older diabetic pup, he's passed on now (I still miss him :( so the shots aren't a problem for me. But for needlephobics i would think that could be an issue, :O
I also have a Basset Hound who is a very yeasty boy, but the Malaseb shampoo and spray, and the Dermal Soothe rinse are all he needs thankfully. He also gets fish oil too.
The allergy consult and testing with all the meds came to about $1200 for me. All depends on your pups problems and the area where you live I suppose. But I have no 2 legged children so these are my babies and i would probably max out all my cards if needed for them, LOL..... OK....that's not so funny.....(knocking on wood).......
ANYWAY.......If money is an issue (like when isn't it?) or you just want to try this first and see if it's enough for your pup, I would buy the Malaseb Shampoo and spray, and also the Dermal Soothe Rinse, I think I got mine at Amazon.com. The Malaseb spray & shampoo was a package deal, about $20 I think, I got 2 of those and then the Dermal Soothe Rinse I think is about $15. And also the fish oil combined w/ the benedryl. Maybe that's all you need.
WHEW.....sorry so long.....hope it helps your baby.
OH...coconut oil too....There was an artical in the dog journal about it. It's a natural anti-fungal. Good for people too. But you need to buy the better virgin stuff, not the really cheap stuff in the supermarkets, that's just for cooking. Anyway, you can give some in their food, very small amount at first as too much can cause the poops and stomach upset....maybe just a teaspoonful at first. You can also rub it in directly on hot spots/itchy areas. Works great...but is very yummmy so they tend to want to lick at it. Nothing wrong with that but not good for the hotspot,LOL.....
Wow! Thank you guys for all the great info! Since I have an appointment with her regular vet in a few weeks, I might just try to increase the benadryl dose and give her fish oil for now. That way, I'll be able to see if it makes a difference before we see the vet. If not, we'll ask him what he recommends. I'm just a little wary of the steroid shots, since I've heard it can have some negative side effects. But I also do not like seeing her so uncomfortable, so if worse comes to worse, I might have them give her a shot...or maybe take her to a dermatologist.
I know for a fact that it is pollen allergies, though, as she does not have any issues in the winter. It starts early spring and then gets worse around this time of year.
Is the Mylaseb shampoo and spray prescription? I'll look into the coconut oil too!
No prescription needed for the MALASEB shampoo and spray, also the DERMAL SOOTHE rinse, you can buy online.....just google it. Amazon was the best price I found at the time i think. Just read the directions as these shampoos/conditioners have to be left on for 10 minutes or so before rinsing. The spray (they have wipes also) is great for in between baths.
My boy has allergies all year, so doing the immunization shots for him is the best approach for now, along w/ the benedryl, fish oil etc... These are NOT steroid shots. it's just slowly giving him the allergens he's allergic to, to build up his immune system and he'll hopefully become less allergic over time.
For seasonal allergies, like the other poster also, they tend to use the steroid shots if all else fails. They do have something newer called ATOPICA, it's in pill form and is NOT a steroid. This helps with "atopy", which is skin allergies to pollen ,dust etc... you can google and look into that med also. It seemed very promising for pups with more seasonal stuff. And you don't have to give it everyday after the initial dose. Ask your vet about it maybe.
Old fashioned Oatmeal bath soaks can help with the itchies too, like all that Aveeno stuff. My diabetic boy that I had was very itchy and yeasty, the diabetes made it worse and I use to give him oatmeal soaks and rub the oatmeal cream on his feet and belly to help soothe it. Just have to watch w/ too much licking it. The more "natural" stuff is best but pricier. You can even make your own soaks and a paste out of regular oatmeal too. Doesn't matter if they eat that, lol...
Take care and Good Luck, hope your baby feels better soon!! Tons of licks & smooches from my furbabies to yours ; )
Oh....forgot to say my dermatologist said basically 1mg of benedryl per pound. So at 64 lbs, I would think 2 pills which would be 50mg. 2-3x day ( every 8-12 hours).Of course need to watch for any side effects. Usually makes the pups a bit sleepy which is normal, but can also go the other way and make them a bit "antsy" or excitable, which i think means maybe a bit too much. And make sure it is just the plain Benedryl (diphenhydramine Hcl) with no other added ingredients. Store brand is fine.
I'm not very good with meds myself so of course I don't like to give them to the pups, but she said the antihistamines are quite safe in general. And it helps him so much.
pet allergies are very hard to deal with. they process the drugs differently so you have to give a huge dose of benadryl to see any response. We tried all the following with our dog...benadryl, chlortrimeton, atarax, prednisone (worked great but I hate the steroid thing too and we don't want to do it again), oatmeal baths, fish oil, genesis spray, etc so now we are on to allergen injections. This is the third summer he'll be getting them...(first summer, no response, second summer some response and this year is looking better too). The injections are easy and he handles them fine. But they are costly and don't always work. Good luck!
p.s. the genesis spray works good but it is also a steroid. since it is sprayed on the skin they don't absorb as much or have as bad a reaction as prednisone.
Try an oatmeal bath. I know your dog is larger but my Boston terrier had horrible allergies. His paws would swell and his lips and eyes would crack and bleed. I had so much testing done and he was always on Benadryl. Benadryl always seemed to make him drowsey and I hated seeing him this way. I then heard on the radio to give your animals with allergies oatmeal baths like you would give yourself if you had chicken poxes. I went to Walmart and bought Avenno Oatmeal bath, that your sprinkle the packet into your bath tub. After one treatment my Boston Terrier looked and felt 100% better. It was so simple and was I so mad for going to the vet and spending all kinds of money on allergy testing, ect..... Try this, it works!
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