All You Need To Know About Allergic Shock In Dogs


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Allergic or anaphylactic shock occurs when allergic reactions take a serious turn and affect gastrointestinal and respiratory systems. The reaction is instant and can range from minor to severe.An allergic reaction occurs when the bodyโ€™s immune system responds to a foreign substance usually known as an allergen. These allergens can come from any source โ€“ food, water, air, earth etc. The immune system comprises of cells which attack and kill the allergens. But this also leads to a cascade of reactions that ultimately manifest to a physical form like rashes or boils.Allergic shocks can become life threatening if left untreated. Owners must therefore be cautious in the case of a sudden allergic shock. It is very important to understand the causes, effects, symptoms and treatment methods available for allergic shocks.


The following symptoms are usually associated with allergic shocks and should be taken seriously. Sometimes, more than one of the symptoms will occur simultaneously.Itching or redness at affected areaNoisy and rapid breathingVomitingDiarrheaExcess droolingLow pulseSeizuresComa


Almost any substance can be termed allergen if it compromises the immune system. From peanuts to oils to flowers, different dogs exhibit allergic shock to different substances. But the most common one comes from food. Which is why veterinary doctors often advise owners to stick to regular dog food instead of home cooked food.


Currently, no method exists that can accurately determine which dog will be vulnerable to which allergen. It comes from experience and sometimes takes a lifetime to figure out which substances cause allergic shock. In most cases, nothing will happen. In any case, a dog must be immediately rushed to a hospital during an allergic attack.


No one treatment method works for every dog with allergic shock. In most cases, a vaccine works but only after the allergen has been discovered. Epinephrine and antihistamines are also given to treat the allergy. Sometimes, vets may prescribe the use of an Epipen which is a single shot of adrenaline and can be administered during another similar attack. Close monitoring of the dog after administration of the drug is required to understand more about the cause and effect.In case of any type of allergic attack, owners must be prepared to take their dog to the vet. Often, a matter of seconds is the determining factor between a minor attack and a major attack.

Allergic shock can occur due to a variety of reasons but usually happens due to allergens. A dog owner must look for symptoms associated with allergic shocks and take necessary steps. A trip to the vets clinic is absolutely necessary before things go out of hand.

Just like humans, dogs are prone to allergic reactions too. In some cases, certain allergic reactions can be very serious and life-threatening. Itโ€™s important that you learn to identify an allergic reaction and what caused it.

What is an allergic shock?

An allergic shock can be described as an uncommon, exaggerated, and serious reaction to a foreign substance or allergen. These cases range from mild to severe, with a wide range of reactions. A severe reaction can cause your petโ€™s major organs to fail. If your dog is experiencing an allergic shock, you will notice symptoms affecting his respiratory and gastrointestinal systems. This severe reaction is known as an anaphylactic or allergic shock.Your dogโ€™s allergic reaction is triggered by a foreign substance or allergen. When this substance enters your petโ€™s body, his immune system goes into hyperdrive trying to eliminate it. The immune system produces histamines to combat the โ€œintruder,โ€ a fight that can cause extreme distress to your pet.Allergic shock requires immediate medical attention. If left untreated, it can be life-threatening. As long as your pet is treated in time, he will definitely recover.

What are the symptoms of allergic shock?

In case of an allergic shock, your petโ€™s liver is the first organ to be affected. This results in a gastrointestinal reaction. Here are other symptoms a dog can experience during an episode of allergic shock.

  • Redness
  • Itching
  • Sudden vomiting and/or diarrhea
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Seizures
  • Low pulse
  • Increased drooling
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Noisy breathing
  • Coma

There are different categories to allergic reactions with allergic shock being the most serious type. This type of allergic reaction can affect your petโ€™s major organs immediately or can take a few hours. It is imperative that you take your pet to the veterinarian immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.

What causes allergic shock in dogs?

Like us, dogs can be allergic to a variety of things. The most common substances include food, insect bites, vaccinations, and medications. As with any allergic reaction, you will know if your pet is allergic to something only after he has either been exposed to it or ingested it.This exposure triggers his immune system, leading to the release of histamines. As these histamines travel through his body, the symptoms will start to occur.

How is allergic shock treated?

If you believe your pet is in allergic shock, take him to the vet immediately. The most common treatments for allergic shock is adrenaline via injections. Hydrocortisone and antihistamines can also administered. Based on the animalโ€™s condition, the doctor may also suggest additional oxygen and intravenous fluids.If treated on time, your pet will recover from the allergic shock without long-term effects on his health. Speak to your vet and learn how you can protect your pet and prevent future allergic shock episodes.

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