Atopy is a disease causing itchiness in dogs, particularly around the feet, face and belly. It often gets worse over spring and summer. There are three components to the disease, all of which must be treated individually.
Unfortunately, atopy is a lifelong condition, so the focus is on controlling it rather than curing it. The aim is for your dog to be as comfortable as possible, whilst minimising side effects of treatment.
Your dog needs to be treated for its itch if you observe any of the following:
Because there are three components of the disease, there are three aspects of treatment:
1. Improving the barrier dysfunction
- Bathing with cool water then moisturising immediately (Alpha-Keri Lotion)
- Moisturising shampoos (Epi-Soothe)
- Omega 3 and 6 fatty acid supplements
2. Controlling the allergy
- Avoidance (grass, dust mites)
- Topical treatments – steroids (prednisolone), natural remedies (PAW calming gel)
- Oral treatments – steroids (prednisolone), Atopica (cyclosporine)
- Antihistamines (chlorpheniramine), Trental (pentoxifylline)
- Allergen-specific immunotherapy – this requires referral
3. Treating secondary infection
Here you can find information and advice about common problems and diseases. Please remember, though, that this information can't replace a visit to the vet!