7 Natural Home Remedies for Cat and Dog Allergies

At least 10 percent of cats suffer from symptoms caused by flea, environmental and food allergies.

If your cat or dog is scratching, losing hair or developing a rash, it may have pet allergies. Try the following home remedies to help alleviate pet allergy symptoms from flora, food and fleas, or ask your veterinarian for advice.

More people are turning to natural remedies for both themselves and their pets. While nothing can replace the expertise of your local vet, there are many natural remedies to combat common cat ailments. Below you will find several popular holistic methods — all of which can be done from the comfort of your own home.

1. Get rid of plastic food dishes.

Hot spots around the face can be caused by plastic food bowls. Throw out your plastic food and water bowls. Plastic tends to develop tiny cracks that can harbor bacteria, which cause reactions in sensitive dogs and cats.

Pets that are sensitive to these plastic food bowl bacterial allergens often develop puppy acne or feline acne and a rash or pimples around the lips and chin, and sometimes even around the eyes or ears.

Replace plastic with stainless, glass or ceramic food bowls and keep them meticulously clean, including washing them in the dishwasher at least weekly.

2. Do not use tea tree oil to treat skin conditions in pets.

Tea tree oil causes nasty contact allergies in pets, up to and including neurological reactions. Never put human acne medications on your pet. Human skin is much more acidic than pet skin, and using any human skin or hair products on your pet — including shampoo — can cause contact irritation.

Natural remedies for hot spots and allergies include Epsom salts. The healing properties of Epsom salt have been known for generations. Gentle soaking of just about any infected area of skin with Epsom salts — including feet, feline acne, hot spots and more — once or twice daily, discourages infection, reduces swelling and promotes healing. Epsom salts are available at any local pharmacy.

To apply, use a folded cloth applied gently to the affected area. If the hot spots are under the feet, soak feet in a saturated solution by adding as much of the Epsom salts to a warm/hot bowl of water until no more will dissolve. Soak for five to 10 minutes. Do not let your dog drink the water.

3. Get creative with treats.

Use little, white marshmallows as treats for food-allergic dogs. They’re low calorie, and dogs love them.

4. Add a complete oil to your pet’s diet.

A simple way to treat dry skin and dandruff is to add a complete oil to your pet’s diet. Corn, safflower, peanut and sunflower are examples of oils that contain all the essential fatty acids. Your cat can take about half a teaspoon with each meal.

Dogs can be given one to three teaspoons with each meal, depending on size. But remember that more is not better since oils are quite fattening, and some dogs can develop pancreatitis if fed too much fat.

5. Soothe itchy skin with an oatmeal soak.

A mixture of oatmeal and water can be rubbed onto the dog’s skin to help relieve dryness and soothe itchiness. The oatmeal should be left on the skin for approximately 10 minutes and then rinsed off with warm water. Baby food oatmeal makes a great, inexpensive soak.

6. Wipe allergens off of your itchy dog.

The simple act of wiping the dog or cat down with a wet towel when they come in from outside can really help decrease percutaneous absorption of allergens.

7. Treat hot spots with equal parts Listerine, baby oil and water.

Put all three in a spray bottle, and massage a small amount into the skin three times daily. Clearly, caution is indicated and veterinary supervision is a must.

8. Hairball Central

Never mind that these little “surprises” are disgusting to look at, but some cats scatter them around the home like a minefield. And doesn’t it always seem that you only step on them while you’re barefoot? Shaving your cat might be a tempting idea, but we don’t recommend it. Have you ever seen how pathetic a wet cat looks? A shaved cat will look much the same. Instead, step up the grooming routine and try a less drastic remedy for those pesky hairballs. Brush your feline friend daily and then thoroughly wipe down its fur with a moist towel.

You can also help your cat pass the hairballs by giving it a little petroleum jelly or butter to eat (butter may be better, as far as kitty is concerned). Just half a teaspoon for a few days will help. No more, no less. Of course, a diet high in fiber and exercise is another solution to your hairball problem. So get on it, kick off your shoes, and make your home a hairball-free zone again.

9. Attack of the Bladder Cat

Cats, especially male cats, are susceptible to bladder/urethra issues and blockages. If your cat has had such problems, unsweetened cranberry juice may help prevent a reoccurrence. This is because cranberry increases urine acidity which means less chance of blockages or infections.

So try adding cranberry powder to your cat’s food, or cranberry juice to her water. If your cat is finicky, try a syringe of juice daily straight into your cat’s mouth or give her a cranberry capsule. However, consult your vet or the expert at the local holistic pet store for advice on the proper dosage.

source: askmdtoday.com