What Can Cause Hives on a Dog?

Did you know a dog can get hives? You might be wondering why or how your dog got hives, or maybe you are afraid of your dog’s health. Maybe you just found that your dog is covered with hives. If so, read this article for the answers about what might cause hives on a dog.

Dogs going through allergic reactions are unfortunate. They are completely at the mercy of their owners and their skin problems because dogs can’t communicate the source of the problem like humans can. What causes hives on a dog? We’ll go over what hives are, what causes them, and tips for treating them in this blog.

What Are Hives?

Hives are caused by an allergic reaction in which the immune system releases histamine, causing blood vessels to dilate and leak fluid into the skin. This causes irritation and inflammation, resulting in welts or bumps that can appear anywhere on your dog’s body.

What Can Cause Hives on a Dog?

Hives are red, itchy bumps that appear on your dog’s skin. They can be caused by a variety of things, including allergies, infections, and parasites. Here’s what you need to know about hives and how to treat them.

Hives are skin rashes that are usually itchy and red. They may look like small, raised bumps or blisters, or they may form larger patches of raised skin. Hives can be caused by many different things, so it’s important to get your dog to the vet if you notice any symptoms.

Heather Thayer, DVM at the VCA Animal Referral Center in Wheaton, Illinois says that hives can be caused by insect bites, allergies (food or environmental), heat stroke, and even stress.

The most common causes of hives in dogs include:

  • Fleas or other parasites
  • Allergies (to food or environmental allergens)
  • Infections (such as canine distemper or fungal infections)

The most common cause of hives on dogs is an allergy to something in their environment. If your dog has been exposed to something new and has developed hives as a result, they are likely allergic to the substance. Common culprits include pollen, dust mites, mold spores, fleas, grasses and weeds (like ragweed), animal dander (like cat or dog), food dyes, and preservatives.

Other less common causes of hives include insect bites or stings from bees or fire ants; bacterial infections; parasitic infections such as heartworm disease; autoimmune diseases including autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA); kidney disease; liver disease; hyperthyroidism; hypothyroidism; Cushing’s syndrome (hyperadrenocorticism); Addison’s disease (hypoadrenocorticism); leukemia; cancer chemotherapy drugs; medications including corticosteroids like prednisone; cold temperature extremes such as severe frostbite or hypothermia.


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