Fleas are inherently annoying parasites that cause itching. Many dogs also suffer from a flea allergy: flea allergy dermatitis (FAD). The animals react to the saliva of the fleas with severe skin problems. Read here about how you can help your animal.
For dogs suffering from a flea allergy, the bites of the tiny insects are even more unpleasant than for their healthy counterparts. The symptoms that a flea bite causes typically are exacerbated by an allergic reaction. The result is an excruciatingly itchy rash.
Recognize flea allergy in dogs: This is how it manifests itself.
The highly intense itching causes your flea-allergic dog to scratch and bites excessively. Signs of an allergic reaction to the parasite bite also appear on the skin:
● Crust formation
Hair loss at the bite site can also be a consequence. If you observe these symptoms or flea feces on the dog’s coat, you should visit the vet. Otherwise, your dog will keep scratching its skin, which can become inflamed.
Flea saliva allergy dermatitis: How the vet makes the diagnosis
If you suspect that your dog is suffering from a flea allergy, you can have it checked by a veterinarian. He will first look to see if your dog has fleas. He uses a flea comb to brush out the flea droppings and possibly some of the tiny parasites. If he discovers signs of flea infestation and allergic symptoms in your four-legged friend, flea saliva allergy dermatitis diagnosis is obvious. An allergy test can bring certainty.
Does your dog suffer from flea allergies? You can do that.
It would help if you always fought fleas – regardless of whether your animal is allergic or not. Contact your vet for this. For example, he can prescribe parasiticides in sprays or bath additives for your dog. These drugs kill fleas. The vet can recommend skin-soothing shampoos for the skin problems caused by the flea’s saliva. The vet immediately treats open and sore spots on the skin to avoid infection. To do this, he applies an ointment with anti-inflammatory agents, such as glucocorticoids.
Unfortunately, flea allergy dermatitis (FAD) cannot be cured – only the veterinarian can alleviate the symptoms. In addition to parasiticides, skincare products, and ointments, there is the option of desensitization. The veterinarian administers small doses of the allergen to your dog to achieve a habituation effect. Unfortunately, flea allergy desensitization doesn’t work that well.
There is only one sure way to avoid an allergic reaction: your dog must avoid the allergen, i.e., flea saliva. However, this is not easy. Nevertheless, try to protect your four-legged friend from fleas as much as possible. Regular washing of dog blankets, sleeping places, etc., is an essential part of this.