Anaphylaxis in Dogs
Anaphylaxis is an emergency condition that occurs when an animal reacts adversely to a particular allergen. In extreme situations, this reaction can be fatal. The condition is fairly unpredictable, as almost any substance can potentially cause a reaction. The expected outcome is often good if the reaction is caught early and treatment administered.
The condition or disease described in this medical article can affect both dogs and cats. If you would like to learn more about how this disease affects cats, please visit this page in the PetMD health library.
Symptoms and Types
Symptoms of a severe allergic reaction include shock, trouble breathing, vomiting, urination, and trouble controlling their bowels. The onset can be quick, often within minutes of exposure to the allergen.
Virtually any environmental or ingested substance can cause anaphylaxis in dogs. Causes may include insect stings, drugs, or food. If the animal comes into contact with a severe allergen, their body typically reacts in a severe way to the exposure. The reactions can be localized or throughout the entire body of the animal. A serious trauma can also cause this type of reaction.
A dog's reaction to an allergen is rapid, and there are no current tests to determine whether a dog will be susceptible to a certain stimulus. However, some skin allergen tests can be done for many common allergens if believed they are at the root of the problem. A severe reaction is considered a medical emergency and often requires hospitalization.