Allergic dermatitis due to flea bites or DAPP is a skin disease suffered by animals, both dogs and cats, that are allergic to flea saliva. Flea saliva contains more than fifteen different substances that can cause allergic reactions in animals. It is not necessary for the animal to be infested with fleas for dermatitis to occur. The bite of a single flea is capable of producing a severe allergic response and prolonged reactions if, in addition, the animals scratch themselves.
Flea bite allergy in humans
Just like animals, humans can also be affected by flea bites and can also suffer from an allergic reaction to flea saliva, known as flea allergy dermatitis . Dogs and cats are commonly identified as hosts for fleas, but rodents, birds, and small furry animals can also carry them.
What are the symptoms of flea bite allergy?
Flea saliva allergy creates extreme itching, irritation, swelling and causes the dog to scratch, lick and even bite the affected area. In addition, your hair could also fall out. This allergy occurs especially in parts of the body such as the beginning of the tail, the abdomen, the thighs and the inguinal region. It is not necessary for the animal to be infested with fleas for dermatitis to occur. The bite of a single flea is capable of producing a severe allergic response and prolonged reactions if, in addition, the animals scratch themselves.
What can you do?
The first thing you have to do is implement flea control , not only on the animal, but also in its environment: bed, carpets, as well as in your own home. Environmental control is very important, using products that eliminate adult fleas and prevent their growth and reproduction. Regarding the products to be used on the animal, it is better to use products that are applied topically, such as shampoos, pipettes and insecticide collars . There are other products that act systemically, but it is better not to use them, because they act once the flea has already bitten, so they do not prevent allergic dermatitis. If there are more animals at home, these must also be treated so that there are no reinfestations of fleas among them. Second, you will have to control the pruritus, that is, the itching and hives in the area. Your veterinarian will advise you on the best treatment for your dog, which may include both antihistamines and corticosteroids. Remember, it is much more effective to avoid contact with the allergen and you will achieve this by using shampoos, pipettes and insecticide collars.