Dog allergic to grass! Any experiences of this?

(27 Posts)
honeyroar Sat 15-Aug-15 21:52:51

Our new rescue has been itching the last few days, and has been diagnosed as most likely being allergic to grass. Slight bore really as we live on a small holding in the Peak District and have hundreds of acres of footpaths and fields on our doorstep. We have never had to walk on a road with our other dogs. The vet says we must avoid grass, especially long grass, and that she will need to be on piriton forever.

Does anyone have any experience of this?

ceres Sat 15-Aug-15 22:25:28

Our staffie was allergic to grass....and 1001 other things! He was on piriton daily and if you give it with evening primrose oil it makes it more effective.

We tried pretty much every remedy from apple cider vinegar to aloe Vera gel. Tbh he was always an itchy dog despite our very best efforts. He used to chew his paws raw if allowed - we used to put baby socks on him with Velcro straps to secure, we would put the aloe Vera gel on before putting his socks on. I used to use diluted apple cider vinegar to wipe him down with after a walk to try and remove some of the allergens.

Good luck!

honeyroar Sat 15-Aug-15 23:43:41

Thank you. Someone else mentioned evening primrose too. The only good thing is she is tiny, so can be easily carried for a while. We're going to have to take up agility or something that's indoor exercise! Gutted for her though. She's a rescue, had a hard life, and just started to enjoy hurtling around our fields with the other dogs.

Wolfiefan Sat 15-Aug-15 23:46:07

Stupid question. Is it definitely grass itself? Could it be a grass seed or plant that isn't out all year round?
Pondering allergy testing for dogs!
Wash feet after walk? My mum's dog needs this if walked over fields but local park fine.

honeyroar Sat 15-Aug-15 23:59:27

The vet thought it could possibly be detergent, but her blankets are brand new. It also ties in with the fact that she's got itchier and itchier all week, which coincides with her being outside more and off lead in the field as she's settled in to her new home.

Yes we will have to wash her feet etc, but she's only Jack Russell height, so a lot of her touches grass that is anything other than newly mown! I'm going to have to be one of those people that carry dogs round in a bag!

Wolfiefan Sun 16-Aug-15 00:01:37

Or get a doggy pushchair?!
grin
Dead envy at small holding in the Peak District. Off topic I know!

Adarajames Sun 16-Aug-15 00:14:48

What are you feeding her? Wheat / other grains / sugar beet allergies all give similar symptoms, so avoid foods with these in and may hit find it helps. Raw feeding would be even better of you can, can improve all sorts of allergic conditions

Adarajames Sun 16-Aug-15 00:15:33

Should've said the allergies cause such symptoms and are surprisingly common in dogs, much more so than people think

Freezingtoes Sun 16-Aug-15 00:18:29

Our dog developed an allergy last year and it took ages to clear with anti fungal shampoo, steroids and cream. She would nibble at her paws until they bled. This year, as we saw the same thing happen again we have been quite careful about keeping her off the grass as much as possible. We attach her to a very long lead on our decked area if she is sitting out and walk her on the lead. We also were advised to shampoo her paws every few days and walk her with the shampoo on then rinse it off. Warm water in a watering can works best! If she is nibbling I treat the area with some steroid cream left over from last year and sprinkle some tea tree oil on if she won't leave her paws alone. The shampooing seems to stop the itching.

The itchy season seems to last through July and August and although it is a faff we are managing it better this year.

We have a lab, tying her up at this time of year is also to stop her eating apples from our trees with dreadful results but that's another story!

I hope this helps a little, not sure I would be using anti histamine all year round just yet.

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 16-Aug-15 08:16:40

Allergy testing is easily available and it is possible to get a desensitising vaccine made if specific allergens are identified.

LumelaMme Sun 16-Aug-15 08:20:51

Do you have woods near you? Dense woodland is low on grass and that might be an option.

honeyroar Sun 16-Aug-15 14:18:12

Thanks, v interesting reading. I don't think it's food related (but will bear in mind) as the vet said it was a textbook case (paws, bare bits, belly etc) and it's got worse the longer she's been out in the fields.

I'm wondering if a barrier cream/grease that I use on the horses for mud rash or put on their legs for xc may help? The vet is coming back Monday, so I will ask.

No, we don't have much woodland. But I got my head round it a bit last night. There are a lot of tracks I can still walk her on, there is hope.

landrover Mon 17-Aug-15 00:50:13

Try Purina hypoallergenic food, apparently food is the highest cause go allergies in dogs!

ceres Mon 17-Aug-15 08:43:06

Piriton is safe for dogs to use long term - at least that's what our vet told us.

Our dog was tested for allergies, the same test as is used for humans!

We decided that his quality of life would be very poor if we stopped his walks in grassy areas entirely so we just managed as best we could - using paw wax (we used shows) can provide a barrier, also we used to put a lightweight t shirt on him to protect his tummy and underarms. Equafleece actually do a lightweight summer bodysuit for dogs which can help provide a physical barrier to allergens. We also used to wipe him down with diluted soothing dog shampoo - it would be better to bath after walks but with four stone of bath hating staffie this wasn't possible! As your dog is small maybe it would be easier for you to bath daily, we found dermocanis high gla dog shampoo very good.

honeyroar Mon 17-Aug-15 15:37:08

I was wondering about Equifleeces already, I didn't know they do a lightweight one. Fantastic.

The vet has said to give her weekly medicated shampoo baths. We already had a medicated shampoo someone gave us ages ago from when her vets shit down. I can't remember the name as I'm not home, but the vet says it's the best one to use (it's prescription only).

I'm hoping that when I'm home I can walk the mile up a hill up a track, avoiding the grassy bits, to my friend's riding arena and let her run off the lead with the other dogs for a while in there, it's sand and rubber. She's only one, so needs to run and play too.

My dilemma is that I regularly go away for work a few days a month, and my dad usually comes round and let's the dogs run after balls in the field. My two labs are too strong for him on the lead. I'm hoping we can cope doing this with the new dog too if we use barrier creams and towel her down.

Thank you everyone for your advice and experiences. It's helped me go from eeeek! to getting my head round how to go forward with it.

goddies Mon 17-Aug-15 18:06:09

definitely a paw dip on return home and a wipe down around the face and belly.

If she's allergic to outside stuff carpets and carpet cleaning/washing products can very easily irritate also. Make sure bed is washed in denaturing allergens product.

MotherOfBleach Mon 17-Aug-15 18:17:35

I've looked after a dog that is allergic to grass pollen and flea dirt, along with various perfumes found in a lot of cleaning produce.

In the summer he itches terribly but his owner told me in the winter he's fine.

In the summer he is given weekly medicated baths, piriton daily and is mainly walked on the beach. He is fed BARF, year round. He seemed happy enough when I looked after him, despite the strict bathing/medicating schedule.

Looking after him was a right faff on. Even my own dog found it hard (probably because every time I bathed his new playmate he worried he'd be next)

I've told his owner to only ever be hospitalised in the winter in future wink

notapizzaeater Mon 17-Aug-15 18:21:33

Our dog is allergic yo the start of the long grass season (June time) he's chewing his paws for about 4 weeks then he's ok for the rest if the year. Done it for the last few years, vet said to ignore it as he isn't that bad.

honeyroar Tue 25-Aug-15 23:02:03

Just a little update on this, it's a bit late due to the site being on and off lately.

She's doing well. We've kept her off most grass. We let her in the mown hayfield first thing in a morning for ten minutes, which is our normal routine with the other dogs. I've walked them on tracks and lanes, carrying her over grassy parts. That, combined with the piriton has 90% reduced the rash and itching. We've been letting her walk through shorter grass on walks, and allowing her a ten minute blast of madness with the other dogs before we set off on a walk (she's only 18 months and really needs some off lead mad times!). We've wiped her feet and belly off after walks and brushed out her coat. She's had regular baths. I'm pleased that it's copeable. We're even going to risk taking her to Burghley horse trials on xc day, which is all on grass.

Does anyone think a barrier cream (thinking udder cream, which contains tea tree oil and other soothing ingredients) on the paws and belly would help protect her, or do you think it would just stick the pollen to her?

MiaowTheCat Sun 30-Aug-15 15:54:43

One of mine is allergic to something that's in the long grass in our local area. Not worked out quite what, but it's something that seems to be growing in the start of the season as after that his symptoms die away.

Trouble is - he's a squirrel obsessed dingbat who regularly goes hurtling off regardless and comes back with one eye swollen shut like some kind of wonky hopelessly optimistic pirate. We've had him a good while though so know when/where it's likely to be flared up and try to keep him on lead at those points (while not totally denying him a good whomp chasing squirrels - who've long since ran the opposite direction and are up a tree twerking at him and mocking him totally)

lulalullabye Mon 31-Aug-15 11:25:05

Hi, we have a lab who has allergies to ? grass. We give her and adult fish oil capsule every day and this has reduced her itching and scratching by 80%.
She only has relapses when she sheds her twice yearly heavy seasonal shed.

Mitzi50 Mon 31-Aug-15 11:34:28

Our old lab was allergic to grass and dust amongst other things. If you have good insurance ask to see a vetinerary dermatologist. Our dog was eventually given injections to desensitise her - it was a while ago, but I seem to remember it was flown in from USA - it worked brilliantly but was horrendously expensive (about £1000 10-12 years ago)

MaitlandGirl Tue 01-Sep-15 02:46:01

Our pitbull is allergic to grass but it seems to settle down after a few weeks into spring. Poor boy has bright red blotches on his belly from when he insists on commando crawling the entire length of the garden every morning.

We dose him with Piriton every morning for a few weeks then he's fine.

Adarajames Tue 01-Sep-15 04:39:06

Could also try giving local honey, works well with my hayfever

Colloidal silver can help clean and heal sore patches

TravellingToad Tue 01-Sep-15 05:12:15

Our boxer is allergic to everything under the sun including grass. We had allergy testing done and they made her a custom made vaccination and she also gets steroid shots which are a GOD SEND in controlling the rash and itch.

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