Most of the time when one thinks of suffering from allergies, they’re usually talking about themselves or a child, but did you know that “furry” family members can also suffer from allergic conjunctivitis or “hay fever” as well?
Well if not…
Then you might be in for a surprise which is why we here at IndulgeYourPet decided to write an article all about allergic conjunctivitis in pets just so that folks can become more aware of the potential issue this might for your pet’s eyes, as well as shed some light on the fact that there are a host of medical issues that can potentially affect your pet.
Which is why…
If you are currently in the process of looking for a new pet or have recently adopted a brand new puppy or kitten, you may want to seriously take a look at what options you may have in purchasing a pet insurance policy on him or her so that if you find yourself being the proud new owner of “furry” little bundle of joy that just happens to suffer from allergies, you’re not going to be overwhelmed by vet bills in addition to a whole lot of sniffling and sneezing.
So, what is “allergic conjunctivitis”?
Allergic conjunctivitis is a medical term used to describe an inflammation of the eye that is specifically caused by some type of environmental factor that is acting as an allergen.
Now…An allergen can pretty much be just about anything that is foreign to the body that causes one’s immune system to reaction.
Some common allergens that could potentially affect your dog or cat (or even you) may include:
- Pet dander
- Mold spores
- Chemical scents in cleaning supplies or perfumes
Symptoms associated with allergic conjunctivitis
Common symptoms that you’ll likely encounter with a patient suffering from allergic conjunctivitis may include:
- An inflammation of the eye, eyelids and or the Meibomian glands.
- Inflammation of the conjunctiva which is the term used to describe the mucous membrane that covers the front to the eye and extends behind the eyelids themselves.
- Infected eyes will also have exhibit a watery discharge or appear “watery” (watery eyes).
One important distinction…
That should be made is that despite the fact that allergic conjunctivitis is often referred to as “pink eye”, allergic conjunctivitis is not contagious like “traditional” pink eye is.
This is because…
Allergic conjunctivitis is not an “eye infection” caused by some type of bacterial organism or bacterial infection.
Instead, allergic conjunctivitis is caused by one’s own body reacting to an allergen not to an actual infection.
This is why…
One of the first things that your veterinarian will want to do is quickly determine why your “furry companion” is having an issue with his or her eye (red eye) and perhaps even examine any “eye discharge” to rule out the possibility of a true eye infection.
To do this…Your veterinarian may order one of many possible tests to determine the cause of your pet’s discomfort.
Tests such as:
- A conjunctival smear exam.
- A skin smear exam.
- A Schirmer tear test which is a test used to determine whether or not your pet suffers from “dry eye”.
- Etc, etc…
At this point…
We always like to remind our readers that we here at IndulgeYourPet are not medical professionals and we’re certainly not veterinarians.
We’re just a bunch of folks who really care about animals and try to share what knowledge we have about animals with our readers.
That said however…If you currently have a pet that is suffering from some type of “eye condition” please don’t rely on this information or any other information that you read online to decide what you should do for him or her.
What you need to do is take your loved one to a qualified veterinarian and have him or her checked out by a professional!
Now once you do take your pet to the veterinarian, and it has been determined that your dog or cat is simply suffering from some type of allergy, the treatment will typically involve the administration of some type of eye ointment (or artificial tears) that will be used to help alleviate the current symptoms as well as a trying to develop a “game plan” on how you as the owner can try to limit your loved ones exposure to the allergen that is causing the problem in the first place.
For immediate relief, pet owners can also apply cold compresses to their pets eyes and face (assuming that he or she will allow that).
The problem is…
That sometimes there is very little one can do about eliminating your animal’s exposure to the causal agent which may mean that treatment for you loved one may be a continual process which can equal pretty expensive vet bills over time.
This is why…
at IndulgeYourPet, we typically recommend that everyone who is considering purchasing an animal at least take a few moments and explore what it might cost to purchase a pet insurance policy.
Because, you never know what type of medical issues your pet may have throughout the course of its life time and knowing that you have an insurance policy in place that could “shield” you from costly bills is always a great feeling to have!