Dog allergy: triggers and treatments


What is a dog allergy?

Similar to allergy to cats, dog allergy (also known as dog hair allergy) is one of the animal hair allergies. The hair is not the cause of the discomfort, but certain proteins that are in the dander, saliva or urine of the animals. The hair only ensures a faster spread of the allergen. In a dog allergy typical symptoms of allergy such as itching and runny nose. The symptoms can be treated by medication, in the long term also helps a hyposensitization .

Since dogs are one of the most popular pets of Germans and they are constantly encountered in everyday life, it is difficult for those affected by an allergy to avoid the allergen. Incidentally, the same allergens are found in all dogs, but they are strong or weak depending on individuality and race. This means that allergy sufferers may develop symptoms when in contact with a German shepherd, but not when in contact with a dachshund.

It is often thought that allergic reactions are more likely to occur in breeds with short hair than in dogs with long hair – but this is not proven. For this, the dog allergens are generally considered less aggressive than the allergens in a cat and did not spread so quickly through the air.

Symptoms of a dog allergy

Symptoms of allergic reaction are similar to hay fever . In case of an allergy, an affected person often reacts with the following symptoms:

  • itching
  • Bleeding and / or burning eyes
  • sniff
  • Sneezing and coughing
  • sore throat
  • Skin redness and swelling
  • Shortness of breath (in severe cases)

The complaints usually occur immediately after contact with dogs and can therefore be assigned to the dog allergy relatively quickly, for example the house dust allergy or the nickel allergy relatively quickly. With a prick test , antibodies to the respective allergen can easily be detected by the doctor.

More information: What helps with an allergy to dogs?

An allergy to dogs can be causally treated by hyposensitization. For example, cortisone-containing ointments and antihistamines help against the symptoms. And while it may not be easy, allergy sufferers should try to avoid contact with dogs as best they can – including not touching any dog’s objects (such as toys or a blanket).