Skin conditions are quite possibly the most common reason for people bringing their pets into our animal clinic. It can be a scary experience to be petting your furry family member and find a mysterious bump or lump or to see them constantly scratching a mysterious itch. We know their health is a matter of great importance to you, it is for the staff at our animal clinic as well, that’s why here at Southern Hills Veterinary Hospital in Tulsa, we provide expert dermatology services to help diagnose the problem and determine the best treatment for your cat or dog.
There can be a variety of causes of your pet’s itchy skin including pesky fleas or mites, but one of the most common is due to allergies. These can be broken down into three main categories:
- Environmental – This includes inhalant allergies including pollens, animal dander, house dust mites, and other environmental irritants.
- Contact – These allergies derive from anything your pet has come into contact with. This can include their bedding or grass that they’ve rolled around in.
- Food/Medication – The most common food allergies in cats and dogs develop due to proteins found in dairy products, beef, and wheat. They can also develop allergies from newer medications. Signs of food allergies include constant scratching, dry skin, and/or rashes and hives.
Each case is unique and must be approached differently for optimal treatment. There are a variety of techniques that our veterinarians may recommend to help treat itchy skin. There are many high-quality prescription shampoos, ointments, and lotions that have been known to help.
Another option is changing up their diet. Surprisingly, Iams Kangaroo and Oats has been successful due to the fact that pets are not accustomed to kangaroo and therefore their bodies haven’t developed an allergic response. Omega fatty acid supplements and short-term steroid therapy are other options that may be recommended.
While the majority of the lumps that we treat at our animal clinic end up being benign, we understand the fear that comes with the unknown. Our veterinarians will diagnose the nature of the mass by collecting cells from the lump and send it to our laboratory so that we can know exactly what it is.
The most common masses that we see are skin tags, warts, and cysts, which can be removed immediately with very little pain or stress for your pet.
If the mass ends up being malignant or cancerous, a larger and more complex incision must occur. Following the procedure, we recommend having a pathologist ensure that the cancer has been removed and that the chances of cancer spreading is minimal. Depending on the situation, we may refer you to an oncologist to discuss the appropriate steps to take next.
No matter what may be causing the itchiness in your pet, or what the nature of their lump or bump may be, you can rest assured that the health and wellness of your pet is our top priority. The entire staff at Southern Hills Veterinary Hospital in Tulsa is dedicated to the animals that we see and will treat them as one of our own. We offer a comprehensive list of animal care services, so if you’re having concerns about the health of your pet(s), would like to schedule an annual exam, or would like more information about our animal hospital, then contact us today!