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The word allergy is used to describe several reactions occuring in different parts of the body of the animal: on the skin, in the eyes, ears, digestive system or the respiratory tract. The types of symptoms and their intensity will vary depending on where the allergy occurs, and depending on several other factors, specific to each animal.

The main types of allergic manifestations are:
Food allergies, asthma, atopic dermatitis (or atopy), allergic rhinitis, some forms of urticaria and anaphylactic shock.

Food allergy:
Some foods or nutrients may cause, when they are not tolerated or poorly tolerated by the body, an abnormal reaction following an immunological process. This immunological response is explained by the fact that these foods are considered as foreign bodies (allergens) by the body and leads to the manufacture of antibodies. Do not confuse food allergies with food poisoning.

Note: Food allergy is always caused by a protein. Ex: Chicken protein and not chicken fat.

The allergic reaction: how’s it going?
For there to be an allergic reaction, the allergen must go into the blood vessels and always after a second contact with the protein. The animal may have ingested the food (protein) for several years before being affected.
The body reacts as if it wants to destroy the allergen, considered dangerous. In allergic people or animals, the immune system produces antibodies, also known as immunoglobulins, that attack the allergens encountered.

Atopy or environmental allergy:
The atopy is linked to genetic factors. This anomaly is the fact of possessing, producing, excessively, immunoglobulin * E (IgE) which is a variety of specific antibodies. It is the contact with usually common allergens, such as house dust, animal hair, pollen, mites, which cause the anomalous production of IgE and which triggers immediate hypersensitivity.

Often found in animals, particularly dogs, characterized by severe, seasonal itching, including mainly legs, face and abdomen. The animal will inflict trauma. And frequently there will be a link between ear infections and allergies.

What to do:
If after a few weeks the symptoms do not regress, it would be helpful to see your veterinarian. In itchiness due to allergies is usually well controlled with cortisone treatment and antihistamines.

However, cortisone does not cure the problem and the symptoms reappear when stopped. Cortisone treatments are often feared by pet owners because of the possible side effects. Natural formulas based on omega 3-6-9 may be offered at the same time to support its immune system.

Omega 3-6-9:

There are on the market formulas based on omega 3-6-9 (essential fatty acid) fish or plants (botanical). Look for omega from botanical sources for all these benefits. It is doubly convenient, it is poured on food and also applies to the skin to reduce redness and irritation. This is not the case with omega fish, which do not apply to the skin.

To note: To give 2 to 3 times a week an omega supplement to your animal is to give him a good source of fatty acids essential to his diet. This will bring him general benefits on his immune system.

@ Raymond Racicot, veterinary doctor

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