Is your kitty or pup still scratching that itch?
It's not unusual for your pet to have an occasional itch from time to time. One of the major causes of itching is fleas, and if you've found these pesky insects, you've likely started them on flea and tick control [Mote: if you haven't, do so! You're pet will thank you!]. What happens when the itching doesn't stop, though?
There are many reasons your pet could still have an itch. Fleas, mites, and fungal infections are some of the reasons, and your veterinarian can rule out these causes for you. Sometimes, though, scratching and hair loss can be caused by allergies.
Allergies are an inappropriate overreaction of the body's immune system to an outside substance. In dogs and cats, the itching and hair loss associated with allergies is called atopic dermatitis. They can be allergic to insects, pollen (grasses, trees, weeds), dander, molds, and foods just like humans. In addition to skin reactions, your pet can have excess mucus and water eyes as well. Pets can also become allergic to certain ingredients in food such as soy, corn, or beef. They can occur seasonally (very often in spring), or can occur year round.
If you think your pet may have allergies, he or she will need to see their vet for an evaluation. There are many treatments available for your pet, including medications, Aryurvedic herbs, and special diets. Your vet can devise a plan to determine what Rex or Sheba is allergic to through a process of elimination, and recommend a treatment accordingly. If your pet requires medications, whether for life or on a seasonal basis, she will need regular check-ups to ensure her treatment is working and how her body responds to the medication. Also, since some diseases can also cause hair loss, it is good to keep your pet up to date with lab work to ensure the hair loss is not occurring due another syndrome that could be mistaken for allergies.
So if you pet can't seem to keep that paw down, or keeps needing a tissue, take him to a vet.