Meet Our March Pet of the Month!
Owned by Jill Mansfield
Hi! My name is Pretzel and I'm a miniature long-haired Dachshund. I was named after the first Dachshund in my mommy's life. I was born almost 8 years ago in Perry, Oklahoma and came home with Mommy 9 weeks later. I can't believe I have such a great life. My days are spent napping in Mommy's lap, eating, playing with all my toys, and protecting our household from intruders. Oh, I forgot to mention that I also shred toilet paper and eat inedible materials dropped on the floor. When I was a baby, my long fur was really pretty and Mommy spent a good deal of time brushing me and making me more adorable than usual. But, then the problems began. I itched terribly and scratched so much my skin would become irritated. Mommy and Dr. Kathy tried many approaches and finally decided allergy shots were by best bet. I feel pretty important that in addition to Dr. Kathy (she's my favorite), I have my own dermatologist. Dr. Kathy supplements my shots with antihistamines and occasionally prednisone. However, the shots work very well for me. Achieving success with allergy shots involves a trial-and-error process to find the right dosage and schedule. Dr. Kathy has been so wonderful and patient with me to find this balance. Mommy and I highly recommend this type of allergy testing and the injections to keep me healthy and beautiful. I'm careful never to let Mommy know that I realize I'm a little high-maintenance.
Allergies affect a huge number of cats and dogs across the country, but especially here in Oklahoma. The most common types of allergies are environmental and food. Environmental allergies inpets are similar to allergies in people. They could include just about anything, such as weeds, grasses, trees, or molds. This may sound crazy, but cats can be allergic to DOGS, dogs can be allergies to CATS and both of them can even be allergic to.....you guessed it, PEOPLE! Food allergies are most often allergies to the protein source (chicken, beef, etc.) but could also include grains or dairy products.
In most pets, environmental allergies cause a pet to be excessively ithcy. Some of the signs of an itchy pet include scratching with the back legs, chewing on the body, excessive grooming (in cats), or licking the paws excessively. In other cases, allergic pets may have frequent ear infections of peristent problems with their anal glands.
Food allergies can cause a pet to be ithcy, too. Some pets with food allergies vomit frequently or have soft stools or diarrhea.
If you suspect that your pet may have allergies, you should schedule an appointment with one of our doctors. Here at Osage Animal Hospital, we can help you figure out the best plan of action for your pet. In some cases, allergy testing is indicated, while in other cases we may recommend trying a special diet first. For mild allergies, we may start with a medical regimen suited for your fur-baby that will help them deal with their allergies before more advanced testing is needed.
We are so happy that Pretzel and her Mom decided to pursue allergy testing and then allergy immunotherapy ("allergy shots'). Now, Pretzel keeps her beautiful hair coat all year long and can enjoy spending her days with her Mom without the annoying itching!