Allergic skin disease. 4 Ancilliary Treatments
This data sheet contains a range of management strategies that will help
some dogs with allergic skin disease. It is not intended that you read this list
and apply them all to your pet, rather we may have recommended some of
these to you during your consultation, and this is a reminder of what you can
do. Much of the information is touched on briefly in this data sheet, but is
covered in more detail elsewhere in this series.
Management strategies that may be appropriate for chronic allergic
Flare factors are things that may affect your pet that whilst not the main cause
of disease, can make things worse.
- avoid flea flares. As mentioned in sheet 3 use good insect control.
- dietary trial for dogs with non-seasonal allergies. Dietary allergens can
cause flares in atopic dogs. Food allergens may develop with time so we
may need to repeat a dietary trial if it has been a few years since the last
- Implement house dust mite control measures. House dust mites are a
common cause of problems in allergic pets. Synthetic, impermeable raised
beds can be useful. Also you can try mite proof covers for any bedding.
Washing bedding once a week in ‘house dust mite wash’ may also be of
benefit ( the latter mentioned products are available from many
Improving skin and coat hygiene and care
This list covers some things that can generally improve coat condition and
increase your pet’s resistance to symptoms of skin disease recurring.
- Bath with a non irritant shampoo. QV wash, and bath oil can be
soothing for dogs ( available from pharmacies). The bath oil can be
made up in a spray bottle and applied to your dogs skin. Be careful
where you do this as it can make the ground very slippery.
- Dietary supplementation. Some essential fatty acids can help the
skin. They do this in two ways. Firstly they can improve barrier function
(see allergic skin disease 1: causes and diagnosis Figure 2). Secondly
they can have a mild anti-inflammatory effect. The doses required are
high, and will take at least eight weeks to show any effect. We can
discuss which are the best products to use, and in what quantity. For
convenience we will often use a liquid form applied to the food.