A seasonal allergy in a dog

Author: VioVet
Published: Sunday 20th January 2013
Updated: Thursday 23rd January 2020

Our customer asked:-

I would like some advice as what to buy for my Patterdale Terrier that has a very itchy skin allergy. He has in the past been seen by several vets who agree it is some form of allergy. It only happens in the warmer months and occurs most years.

He gets itchy under his belly and base of tail and if left will scratch himself raw. It has occurred again in the last 2 days. He is on 2 piriton a day (as recommended by my vet last time) and some anti itch cream and also is wearing an Elizabethan collar.
Is there anything you can recommend my buying for him.

Our reply:-

It is always important to maintain good flea control in any itchy dog, though fleas are an unlikely cause for the problem you describe. It is most likely a contact allergy to something outside. Wearing a collar does prevent self-trauma, but is not a complete answer of course, because it leaves the poor chap still feeling desperately itchy I guess. There are a number of general things you can do:

Supplementing the diet with certain oils will tend to condition the skin so that it can best withstand contact allergens. A good example would be Yumega Plus.
Frequently shampooing the affected skin with an oatmeal shampoo is a help. It also helps to condition the skin, as well as removing surface allergens. A suitable example would be Coatex Aloe and Oatmeal shampoo.
Piriton and other anti-histamines are commonly tried, but are rarely very effective.
Dietary allergies are often part of the story, but not particularly in such a seasonal allergy as your dog has. It is still possible that a dietary protein is helping to tip your dog over the "allergic threshold" so trying an exclusion diet based on completely different protein sources might help. Other than that a vet would need to conduct some allergy tests, after perhaps ensuring that there is no skin infection present. Prescription medication can help a lot, but your vet would need to decide on that.

Personally I would try Yumega Plus and the Coatex Oatmeal shampoo. If that fails to help, best to go to the vet again!