Spring is For the Birds

I don’t mean it in the normal sense of the phrase, but literally. Birds are lucky enough to not be afflicted with the dreaded allergies of this time of year.

Some dogs aren’t so fortunate. Every spring and summer, Sir Frederick is cursed with the dreaded itchies. He licks his paws until they are red and sore, also known as hot spots. This just makes him want to lick more.

Fred’s opinion of the itchies

We first brought him home in April 2010. Spring had sprung, and while we were dealing with his severe food allergies, we were also battling the itchies. We tried the Booties approach.

“Haha, I already lost one, suckers!”

He hated them. But worse, the darn things wouldn’t stay on. We found random purple feet throughout the house, and could hear him silently judging us.

I remember when I started feeling the effects of allergies. I never gave them much thought, other than the empathetic murmurs to my friends who couldn’t stop sneezing. I worked with a girl who sometimes had to call out because of her attacks.

Years later, empathy has turned to sympathy, because I feel the pain. Isn’t it awesome how our bodies can just change and start developing issues we never had before? I went to an ENT, who informed me I’m allergic to house dust and grass. So I don’t want to go outside . . . but I can’t really go inside for relief either? A friend suggested I invest in a quality bubble.

I don’t think they make bubbles for dogs. We started Fred on Benadryl, but like most medications, he built up a tolerance. The vet suggested Zyrtec, but for now we are trying a prescription. So far, it seems to be working well. However, it’s frustrating to constantly correct a dog for something natural like licking.

“Nope, not coming down. You guys are mean.”

Still, we must be diligent. Even if he is doing something simple like bathing, he has a tendency to perform such acts on the bed or couch. This produces a lovely wet blob, and I can already tell you can’t wait to come over and sit on my couch.

“I iz embarrassed by my itchies.”

Poor Fred. With severe food allergies on top of the itchies, he’s a lot like his mama; allergic to the inside and the outside. But I would still take his life in a heartbeat, because that dog is more loved than some children I have encountered.

*Note ~ Please, always consult with your vet before starting your pets on medications. Animals can have allergic reactions or stomach/liver issues, just like humans.*


8 thoughts on “Spring is For the Birds

  1. K.B. says:

    I love the staircase picture! Meanies! Poor Fred.

    Did you just find out about the grass allergy? I remember reading that you had a hard time smelling it last time you walked the dogs.

    • Jen Hurowitz says:

      Isn’t he a trip? He should have been an actor. I found out last year about the allergies, but now that pregnancy has given me “dog nose” (no pun intended) the grass just smells even grassier! I get nasty post-nasal drip and headaches with the occasional dramatic sneeze. It could be a lot worse!

  2. “silently judging us” HA! He does look cute in his (3) booties, though, though I can imagine what a pain that would be. Poor Fred. Our cat suffers from allergies as well. It used to be just in the fall, but now it’s spring as well and this year winter didn’t provide much relief. Or she’s become neurotic and just itches and loses hair out of pure habit.
    Hope he finds some relief soon. I know it’s really hard finding just the right cure for allergies.

    • Jen Hurowitz says:

      I’m pretty sure Fred is always judging us for something! He has a very brooding, serious face. Your poor cat! Having an uncomfortable pet is so hard. I wish we could explain to them what is going on. The prescription we have now seems to be working, but we still have to correct him, a lot. But, he is in his crate all day and can lick to his heart’s content, and he doesn’t have any hot spots!

  3. talleygilly says:

    Love this. I am looking forward to the upcoming “Tales of Golden Boy” picture book from you . . .all these great photos of Fred and your witty captions 🙂 – it would be divine!

    • Jen Hurowitz says:

      What a good idea! My husband is the photographer, so he can take all the shots and I’ll work on witty captions. 🙂 It’s not hard to imagine what Fred is thinking because he is quite expressive.

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