Does Your Pet Suffer From Allergies?

Allergies are common, but complex. Determining if your pet has an allergy, and to what, requires a thorough history, clinical exam and multiple tests.

- Flea Allergy Dermatitis (FAD) results from an allergy to a protein in flea saliva, which comes into contact with the pet when the flea bites. Dogs and cats with FAD may not have a large flea burden – even a few fleas can cause itching in these animals. In dogs, red, irritated skin and hair loss over the rump, tail base and thighs may be seen. Cats may also be affected on the head. A diagnosis of FAD is usually made based on the location of the lesions and the itch resolving after flea treatment. Evidence of fleas or flea “dirt” (faeces) can help the diagnosis, but they are not always easy to find, particularly in cats who groom themselves so well. FAD can be managed by ensuring the pet is on a regular flea preventative, and that the pet’s environment has been treated for fleas, to minimise exposure.