Anaphylaxis: How a Quick Response Can Save a life

Meet Maggie, an Island Animal Hospital Pet Patient Who Was Treated for Anaphylaxis!

Allergic reactions can be hard to predict, and in some cases even more difficult to diagnose. While minor allergic reactions are common for household pets to experience, there is a potentially fatal and hard to identify form of an allergic reaction to remain aware of, called anaphylaxis.

Anaphylaxis is most commonly known as an extreme allergic reaction to a specific allergen. While minor allergic reactions are common, true anaphylaxis is rare. Because of the severity of reaction that occurs, it is important for pet parents to know the tell tale signs of anaphylaxis.

Usually Anaphylaxis is Impossible to Predict.

Because anaphylaxis can occur after exposure to a variety of elements, it is hard to predict what may cause the reaction, or when it will occur.

Frequent causes of anaphylaxis include:

  • Insect bites/stings
  • Drugs
  • Environmental factors
  • Chemicals  
  • Food

Reactions to this stimulus can include:

  • Facial swelling
  • Hives
  • Rashes
  • Vomiting
  • Shock
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Excessive salivation
  • Difficulty controlling bowels
  • Death

Symptoms usually start within minutes of exposure and require very quick treatment.

Treatment for Anaphylaxis may Include:

  • Antihistamines
  • Oxygen or fluid therapy
  • Blood pressure measurements
  • Hospitalization

For pets with a history of anaphylaxis, over the counter antihistamine treatments, or sometimes even EpiPens, can be an option. Sometimes, reoccurring reactions increase with severity.

With a Quick Response, Anaphylaxis can be Treated.

It is important for pet parents to always have the contact information of a local animal hospital or emergency care facility in the case of a pet emergency, such as anaphylaxis. A quick response in case of severe allergic reaction could be life saving. Click Here (Maggie link) to learn about an Island Animal Hospital pet patient who was treated for Anaphylaxis at one of our hospitals.

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