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09 Apr 2006

allergies - always scratching prednisilone works what about long term effects
I have two labs (brother and sister) the male has a problem with allergies. He scratches all the time and the vet put him onto steroids, antihistamine and antibiotics. once course of medicine is finished it starts all over again. The female also scratches but not as bad. they both have problems with their hips and the steroids also help that. What is the alternative to steriods. Has anyone had any success with anything else. They don't have flies and are treated with frontline and washed and dipped regularly.
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Expert
CyberVet
cybervet

01 Jan 0001

Please read my many replies on cortisone and allergies in previous questions, you can find these in the archive. Once again, allergies are never cured. Do not expect them to go away or stay away simply because a course of treatment was prescribed. The treatment is prescribed to suppress allergies. As long as the allergy is there (usually a permanent) treatment will be necessary. In many patients this can only be done with cortisone (in the case of environmental allergy). As long as the dose is correct for the patient and the interval between treatments as long as possible (say every two or three or four days) the side-effects may be minimal or absent.

It is extremely important that you continue absolutely flea control.

If you have not tried strict application of a commercial hypoallergenic diet, this should also be introduced. In some cases, cortisone may then even be withdrawn.

Dr Malan van Zyl
Veterinary Specialist Physician
Cape Town
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