What is Atopic Dermatitis?
Atopy is an itchy skin disease where the animal is allergic to inhalant allergens, or substances, in the local environment. These “aeroallergens” are believed to access the body through contact with the skin. These allergens can trigger severe pruritus, or itchy skin.
In dogs, this response is often hereditary and some breeds are more affected than others. Dogs often present with a history of chewing their feet or rubbing their face on the ground. Their belly and arm pits are often red and inflamed and where the chewing and rubbing has been extensive, secondary wounds and infections may be present. The coat is often greasy due to secondary contamination by certain yeasts.
More often than not the ears are also affected. In many cases scratching the ears is the initial symptom prompting the visit to the vet.
What is our treatment process?
Diagnosis is based on a detailed history and an elimination of any other causes such as fleas and diet. During the consultation our vets may perform ancillary tests to check for mites, bacteria and yeast.
Based on their finding our vets will formulate a treatment plan that is best suited to your pet. Allergies cannot be cured, only managed. Our aim is to reduce your pet’s exposure where possible and to treat the symptoms as they occur.
If you think your pet may be suffering from Atopy, please contact one of our staff members at Sydney Animal Hospitals.