Okay, he is black with a dusting of gold. I’d like to say that this coloring is natural and not provided by Mother Nature in full spring regalia. However, if one were to look at his watery eyes, they would see the tell tale signs of an allergy to pollen. Yes, even the cat.
Pets in recent years have become four legged children and are a beloved part of our culture. Easy to see by the 48.3 billion dollars Americans spent on their pets last year. Most of this hefty price tag is from the cost of veterinarian medicine. Aside from cost, there are other reasons to turn to holistic medicine first to take care of your pet’s health.
Non-seasonal allergies in cats and dogs generally show up in their skin first. Patches of hair falling out, incessant licking or scratching, flaky skin, increased shedding are all possible symptoms of allergies, along with loose stool or diarrhea. If allergies are a constant source of trouble, chances are they are not seasonal. Animals are often the red-headed step children when it comes to what they are fed. (It is hard enough to know what to feed humans and we have stricter regulatory codes.) If your pet suffers from allergies, it could be they are allergic to their food. Switching to foods with less processed meats, no corn meal or wheat may clear up Fluffy and Fido’s allergic reactions. Adding supplements like Omega 3 fatty acids to alleviate inflammation can also help.
Sometimes finding the cause of the allergen is a process of elimination. Limit their exposure to toxins: flea and tick medications, vaccines, and common household agents like laundry detergent to see if they could be the cause.Watch for when they have an allergic reaction to see if the allergen is based on outdoor pollens, grasses or insects. Many cats and dogs are allergic to fleas and have reactions to the flea’s saliva when bitten. Also be aware of what type of reaction they are having. Hay fever affects dogs and cats much in the same way it does humans: coughing, sneezing, watery eyes and wheezing.
If your pet suffers like mine from pollen, there are some simple tips to make you both happier. Monitor the pollen count. Keep your pet indoors or take them for shorter walks when the count is high. Wipe down cats and dogs with a wet towel to capture allergens before they enter the house. This also helps cats from ingesting pollen as they groom themselves. Vacuum often to keep the home as pollen free as you can. A teaspoon of local honey twice a day, may keep the doggie doctor away. This will desensitize them to the pollen in the area. And if none of this helps, a trip to the vet may be worth the visit.