Dogs and humans, when it comes to dog allergies, almost sail on the same boat. But when it comes to protecting our fur babies against any kind of allergies, extra precaution needs to be taken. Different breeds have a different level of seriousness when it comes to allergies.
Those who have Labradors often complain of stomach allergy or Skin allergy at most, while those who have German Shepherd often complain of environmental allergies the most. To deal with your dog’s allergy, it is important to understand the root cause of the same.
Understanding Common German Shepherd food allergies
Dogs are quite suspectable to any kind of allergic reaction than anyone can think of. When it comes to Breeds like German shepherds, well, they tend to be extremely sensitive. It has been estimated that one out of every seven dogs from this breed has severe allergies.
Whether it is a food allergy, environmental allergy, or skin allergy, the signs, if noticed, should not be ignited at all. Sometimes they may turn out to be serious. The allergies that canine gets can be quite tough on the body.
German Shepherd may experience physical discomfort like itchiness, but some symptoms might look like flu. The best way in such a case to care for the German Shepherd is to avoid the irritants altogether. Understanding how the fur baby reacts to specific allergens is the very first thing to do.
How To Tell What Allergy Your Dog Has?
If there are no signs that an allergy shows well, it is not an allergy but something else. That is why you can rest assured that allergy will not be life-threatening if it shows the signs and the proper treatment is started too.
As per the type of German shepherd allergy, some causes and even indications may vary. Irrespective of this, there is, of course, a way of telling what exactly could be the allergy that your fur baby is likely to have.
Symptoms to not ignore
When it comes to food allergy, there are some common signs that often German shepherds may show. The primary one would begin with the digestive system. Some cases affect even the skin. Listed are some signs that a German Shepherd may create as a food allergy.
- Swelling in the throat, lips, face, and tongue
- Vomiting, Nausea
Food allergies are one of the common types that are highly found amongst the German Shepherd. It probably can be when they are given chicken and eggs regularly, the protein intake in the body increases due to which such a problem happens. It may have some more severe signs than the normal one.
Different Common Allergies in German Shepherds
Fleas Allergies in German Shepherd:
There is not even a single breed that doesn’t get affected by Fleas. When it comes to your fur baby, a German shepherd, it is better to make up the mind for fleas to be quite common. But there is a high possibility that your dog may have an allergy to such a problem. It not just gets affected by the bite but also the saliva of the flea may result in some allergic reaction.
If the flea bites the skin of the dog, the immunity system kicks in to fight against the threat. This eventually leads to more red spots, which get inflamed. There are some cases where dogs even start losing their fur if they get bitten. If all, there will also be a particular spot where the itchiness will be more just the way regular flea bites could be. When it comes to German Shepherd well, it can be a disaster.
Steps to eliminate fleas from German Shepherd:
The best way in such a case to protect your dog against the reaction is by keeping the yard, home, and even another area around the home flea-free. There are so many products of pest control that can be used inside the home. It can be effective.
Besides, to make sure fleas don’t bite your pup, it is better to speak with a vet who can offer the right prescription as a preventive measure. A pill should be given once a month that makes sure your dog stays flea and tick-free.
Other options like over-the-counter topical solutions, regular bathing, and even scrubbing your pet are important. Some common sports like belly, genital area, and tail may have most fleas gathered, which needs to be cleaned with extra effort.
It is better to use applications that may not damage the skin or fur of the dog but only kill the fleas and ticks.
Grains Allergies in German Shepherd:
This is another type of common allergy that should not be ignored. Different grain-free kibble products can be found in the market today. Earlier, grain was a low-value product. There are still so many cheap brands that make use of grain as a filler. However, the fact is grains are not important for the fur baby. Options like wheat, corn, and even soy can be quite the offenders. That is why it is better to give your dog a better dietary supplement.
Grain doesn’t have any kind of healthy calories. It is better to offer the German shepherd grain-free dog food. German Shepherds who must have earlier had taken grain and showed allergies must have resulted in red and itchy skin. These are just some of the physical symptoms along with which some dogs even face the problem of chronic diarrhea. It is the time when you must change the dog food entirely.
Dealing with the allergy against the grain:
- First, it is important to stop all kinds of food that have grain present in it.
- It is important to bring the dietary changes in the German Shepherd food plan.
- Food that has ingredients with vitamins, antioxidants, minerals can be the best option to choose. It should not come with any kind of additives or artificial ingredients.
- The over counter applications and lotions should be applied to the affected area so that inflammation will get reduced to a great extent.
Environmental Allergies in German Shepherd
German Shepherds face this common allergy the most, due to which there are some skin troubles that they go through. This could be more like pollen-related allergy, which is quite common. The dog’s immunity system considers pollen to be a threat, which is why it tries to fight back using an allergic reaction. This often happens in a season like fall or summer.
Some signs should not be ignored if such an allergy seems to be the problem. This includes frequent biting on the body, scratches, and even chewing. If any of such signs are noticed, then this is possible that your dog has got an allergy. There are also signs such as hot spots, flack skin, and even dandruff and sores to not ignore.
Dealing with it:
This problem is not something to be taken lightly, but firstly, a close watch on the symptoms should be followed to deal with it. Whether it is the eyes or ears that are getting affected the most, it is important to note down all the issues.
If there is any other sign like teary eyes or smelly ears, it could be a possible sign of the painful infection that must also be brought under control.
It is better to speak with a veterinarian immediately after any signs are noticed, and the right prescription should be started.
Protein-Based Food Ingredients Allergies
Along with grains, some German Shepherds may also have trouble eating proteins. Talking of which beef and chicken have a high content of proteins that may act as the common allergens. However, most of the manufacturers ideally create two meat types of food. That is why it could be quite challenging to look for a recipe that doesn’t have these contents.
Dealing with protein-based food allergy:
Some limited ingredients in dog food can work the best. They are designed especially for allergy sufferers and are available easily in the market. Many brands simply use wholesome ingredients to avoid any kind of allergic reaction. This often can work with formula so that your dog gets only the unique protein sources.
Portions like fish, lamb, and bison can be the best source to be added to your dog’s meal plan. It gives much of the protein that your dog requires without any kind of other worst effects.
The allergy signs are quite like the previous one. If the dog shows any signs like irritated skin or chronic diarrhea, quick action should be taken.
Pollen Allergies in German Shepherd:
As said earlier, one of the environmental allergy pollens can trigger some health issues in your German Shepherd. It is quite rare in dogs, but it should not be ignored if the problem arises. Usually, German shepherds are the ones who often get allergic to such problems. Since this can be genetic, it often gets passed on to generations.
It is also important to understand that pollen allergy can worsen if not treated on time. Many signs may appear when a dog starts turning to be an adult.
Sometimes, such allergy can reappear at the season times, and since it is in the air, extra precautions need to be taken.
Dealing with Pollen allergy:
Firstly, it is important to understand that pollen is an airborne substance that usually is created by the tree.
If Shepherd inhales it, then the immunity system to a great extent gets compromised, so it is important to visit the vet periodically.
There could also be possible signs such as the runny nose and red itchy skin that should be treated as it appears for which ointments are available in the market.
Some chances of severe allergic reactions like Atopic dermatitis are high, which usually flares up if the dog gets exposed to pollen. That is why the right medication and supplements need to be provided so the signs can be alleviated.
Dust Allergies in German Shepherd:
Just as pollen causes allergy, the chances are high that even dust may create the allergy and result in Atopic Dermatitis if inhaled. Dust is a blend of substances that may vary, and hence there are high chances of getting allergic reactions.
Usually, the airborne dirt particles and dust mites can turn out to be worst. It may result in difficulty in breathing, asthma, and even rash skin.
Dealing with dust allergy:
Dust cannot be avoided, but if it is important to restrict your dog at some point, exposure of your dog to it should also be put to a limit.
It is also important to keep the home clean always, and if you have a German shepherd pup, he should be kept far from the dusty areas at home.
Common areas like attics, basement, and even storage sheds are more susceptible to dust. When it comes to cleaning the home, it is better to keep the dog well separated from these areas as a preventive measure.
Cleaning Products Allergies:
If you have been using some strong cleaning chemicals at home, it is important to understand that dogs are likely to get triggered by allergic reactions. Vet advise in such a case must be taken.
There is a problem called Contact dermatitis, which is a condition that takes place when the dog creates any physical contact with the body irritant which the body doesn’t agree with.
Since cleaning products are quite common and have strong chemicals present in them, it is important to take preventive measures to avoid such a problem.
The preventive step that can be taken:
- It is better to visit the pet clinic and purchase the better cleaning products that have been designed considering the issues of a pet in mind.
- To protect the dogs from facing such problems, natural cleaners should be options.
- There are environmental cleaning products that don’t have any harsh chemicals. They are sage and don’t cause flare-ups.
Dealing with Common German Shepherd allergies
It is quite clear that many allergies can happen to the German Shepherd. This can be caused due to many things. Even if allergies are treatable, but not all of them need to get cured. But it is better to avoid the allergens as much as possible.
The treatment for the allergy entirely depends on the type of problem that must have had happened. There are general ways to treat allergies which could either be environmental management or medications.
Getting rid of the allergens from the surrounding of the dog is important, and if the problem is quite severe, both options should be chosen.
If your dog has got any kind of skin allergy that usually happens because of a flea bite or due to a food allergy, then food should be changed while the flea control program should be followed. This way, the risk of flea eradication can be helpful.
It is important to avoid giving your German Shepherd any kind of commercial food. Since most of them usually have ample grains, it is better to avoid them to control the risk of allergies. Amongst grains, rice is one of the safest options, but soy can be quite harmful. Besides, corns and wheat can be common allergens too.
Another reason why commercial food should be avoided is that it contains preservatives and additives as well. The best way to control food allergies is by controlling what is being given to your furry baby. That is why any food which has suitable substances that are healthy should be checked first with the vet and then given because often they are opposite to what they claim to be.
The table scraps should be banned entirely for the German Shepherd as some substances in the human food could be the problem.
Some allergens could be medication such as antihistamines and steroids. These medicines have some severe side effects, such as drowsiness, and that is why it is better to avoid them.
Those whose dog has been dealing with pollen allergy should avoid taking dogs for long walks. Avoid walks in the early morning or late afternoon is advised.
Once the dog comes from the wall, it is important to use a wet towel or like it and wipe the dog so that it gets removed entirely if there is any pollen stuck.
While dealing with environmental issues, it is always advised to wash your dog’s bed using hot water. Vacuuming regularly is also helpful.
Elimination of the diet function
German Shepherd is likely to have food allergies, and hence the elimination of the diet states what food can your dog is likely to be allergic to.
There are times when you may want to treat your dog with some special food; otherwise, on a regular basis, the food that the vet advises should only be given. However, such a process cannot always work quickly; hence, it is important to give it sometimes.
The signals of improvement can only be noticed after six weeks or sometimes more as the body is trying to filter out all the proteins.
Other Treatment Options
Other than the preventive measures stated above, there are some treatments options that, of course, after consulting the vet, will be much clear. But also, few treatments can at least slow down the allergy signs, such as over-the-counter treatments, sulfate-free shampoo, application of Coconut oil once dry and itchy skin, and antihistamine prescriptions that can always be the best choice. There is also Immunotherapy which is an efficient way of preventing allergies. This is provided so that German Shepherd can get used to such an option.
Frequently Asked Questions
What can you give a German shepherd for allergies?
Some of the best shampoos come with anti-inflammatory products such as tea tree or aloe vera oil. It can give your fur baby more of a calming effect. Besides, there are also topical creams and hot sprays that are inexpensive and useful to deal with dog allergies.
How do you tell if your German Shepherd has a food allergy?
There could be some common signs of food sensitivity such as diarrhea, Gastrointestinal signs, itchy coat, Poor skin, or foot infections.
How long does it take for a dog to react to a food allergy?
If it is a skin issue like a hive, then the problem may pop up to nearly 24 hours post the dog eats the food they are allergic to. In case there is a food allergy, then the problem is likely to occur to the stomach as well within few days and can grow if the right action is not taken on time.
What are common food allergies in German shepherds?
The allergies in dogs usually are because of proteins, and they are from beef, dairy products, chicken, eggs, gluten, and soy. Since most of the pets usually eat such food, the antibodies often react using antigens, and signs appear.
German Shepherds is one popular breed. Besides, they are known to be not just intelligent but also loyal and courageous for good reasons. They have got thick fur coating which offers better protection. But sometimes, the coat can get suspectable to creating skin issues. Being a parent to a German Shepherd is not easy.
But it is always better to stay informed about what possible allergies, be it skin or food allergies, can happen and how they can affect. Whether it is environmental irritants, parasites, or food, there are some preventive steps that every fur shepherd’s parent should take so that they have a comfortable life.