Apr 12, 2024 - News

Texas pets are feeling allergy season

Illustration of a tissue box with the opening in the shape of a dog bone

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

More pets in Texas, particularly dogs, are being treated for itchy skin and allergies.

Why it matters: Seasonal allergies can be terribly uncomfortable for our furry friends and can snowball into secondary issues, including skin infections.

By the numbers: Pet insurance company Trupanion reports a 60% increase in allergy claims for insured pets in Texas in 2023 compared with 2019, with the data growth adjusted and measured on a per-1,000-pet basis.

  • And insurer Nationwide says allergies top the list of health conditions that prompt vet visits.

What they're saying: It's hard to say whether allergies are indeed more prevalent or whether we're just "better at finding it and our pet owners better at seeking treatment," says American Veterinary Medical Association president Rena Carlson.

Between the lines: Skin problems in pets are "absolutely the No. 1 issue we see with allergies," Carlson tells Axios.

  • Allergies can also show up in the ear canal, which "is actually just an extension of the skin," she says. And with environmental allergies, the itchiness can appear seasonally.
  • Other major reasons a pet could be itching: a parasite-related skin problem or a food allergy.

💭 Jay's thought bubble: I have indeed noticed my partner's dog, Roxy, has been a bit itchier lately, though I chalked it up to her losing her winter coat in the warmth of spring.

  • This is a good reminder to check with her vet to see if there's anything more we can do to give her some relief.

The bottom line: If you suspect your pet has allergies, take them to the vet immediately, Carlson says.

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