Does Your Australian Shepherd Have Allergies? - Aussie University

Does Your Australian Shepherd Have Allergies?

Does your Australian Shepherd have allergies? Most symptoms are associated with dermatologic problems but some can lead to chronic respiratory issues if left untreated. 

Here are common allergy symptoms found in dogs:

Frequent Sneezing

Compulsive scratching/itchiness 

Periodic chewing on the same or different body parts or area

Skin irritation/ fur loss

Runny eyes

Swelling of the face, ears, lips, eyelids or earflaps

Red inflamed skin



Chronic ear infections

Constant licking


Dog allergies can present in many ways. Here’s how you can give your Aussie some relief.


Most allergies develop in the second year of life for dogs. Australian Shepherds can get all kinds of different allergies. They can even have sneezing fits, just like people do. Canine allergies can also be characterized by a range of other symptoms, including scabs or other skin complaints, itchy ears, regularly rubbing body parts against the ground, walls, furniture, etc. If you suspect that your furry one is experiencing allergies, you should take him or her to the vet right away. Some allergies can be serious and even minor ones can cause a good deal of uncomfort. There are a number of veterinary treatments that may be prescribed for dog allergies. 


A few common types of allergies:

Contact allergy-grass, plants, dust mites, pollen

Flea allergies- many dogs are highly allergic to flea bites

Food allergies- including different types of proteins 

Inhalant allergies- allergies that` are inhaled

Molds- basement exposure


The best way to rid your dog allergies is prevention. For example, if your dog is allergic to a certain type of dog food, all you have to do is stop feeding it to them. If your vet can figure out what your Australian Shepherd is allergic to, then it’s a simple matter of removing the allergen.

About 90% of allergic pets can be effectively controlled with the following treatments: 

Avoidance- while it may be impossible to completely eliminate all the offending Agents many can be reduced with minimal effort on the part of the owner. You can use it in conjunction with other treatments such as;

Keeping your Aussie out of the room for several hours while vacuuming

Use a plastic cover over your Aussies bed

Wash their bedding regularly in very hot water

Avoid letting your little guy or gal sleep on stuffed furniture

Have un-carpeted floors in your house

Run your air conditioning during hot weather days

Keep your Aussie out of basements and freshly mowed lawns

Avoid dusty pet foods

Use a humidifier/dehumidifier and clean it regularly

Don’t keep large numbers of houseplants around


Luckily, there are a number of ways in which Aussie owners can provide natural allergy relief to their beloved furry friends. 


  • Coconut Oil and Oatmeal baths are the most popular ways to ease irritation.
  • CBD for dogs can offer up many allergy fighting benefits to our Australian Shepherds as well and a huge bonus…CBD can promote healthy skin and coat.


Depending on what kind of allergy your Australian Shepherd is suffering from, your vet might prescribe your dog anti-histamines. It is a proven fact that these are effective in only 30 percent of all canine allergies cases.It can be a relatively cheap and safe way to help your pup. 


Some dogs respond well to Omega-3 fatty acids. They’ve been found to reduce the effects of chemicals, such as histamines, that a dogs body releases in response to allergies. Make sure you consult your vet as they will be able to recommend a suitable dose. 


In cases of severe allergies, your vet might prescribe your Australian Shepherd cortisone. This can come as a cream, tablet or injection. It is effective but it is a strong medication with a long list of side effects so it should only be used on a short term basis or when completely necessary. 


A number of topical treatments, such as shampoos and soaks, can provide relief for your Australian Shepherd if they are itching or have other skin irritants. These types of treatments work right away but only offer short term relief. 


If your dog suffers from an allergy to something that is impossible to avoid many vets will suggest immunotherapy. This is a kind of treatment that gradually desensitizes your dog to the problem allergen. Ones its been determined what your pup is allergic to, a special injection is prepared and given by a vet either monthly or weekly. Gradually your dog will build up a tolerance to the offending allergen and it will no longer cause a reaction. While it can be costly and lengthy process, it has a success rate of about 80 percent. 


For a severe allergy, steroids can reduce inflammation and offer relief from the symptoms. It is important to note that these are corticosteroids, which are different from anabolic steroids that are used for illegal performance enhancers …don’t expect your dog to get ripped! While effective, steroids are strong and come with a long list of unwanted side effects as well. That’s why they are only used in serious cases and on a short term basis. 


At the end of the day, allergies are no fun for our pets. If you are one of the 50 million Americans who suffer from allergies each year, you know just how awful it can be. They can be especially awful for our Australian Shepherds because they aren’t able to understand its source. It’s very important to make sure that your Aussie does indeed have an allergy and not a different ailment going on. The major way to differentiate allergies from dog influenza or a “cold” is the itch factor. Once the allergy has been confirmed, you can cooperate with your vet to effectively treat the allergy in a safe way or try some of the natural ways on your own.


Hi there! My name is Erica and I am absolutely in love with Australian Shepherds. These pups have been a big part of my life for as long as I can remember, and I have learned so much about them over the years. I am now excited to share all of my knowledge and experiences with you through my writing for Aussie University. When I'm not typing away, you can find me out and about with my own Aussie crew, exploring all that nature has to offer or participating in fun dog-centered activities. I can't wait to connect with all of you fellow Aussie lovers out there!

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