PITtsburgher wrote:I would start with a vet visit because often there is a component of infection when they get really bad allergies. They can also talk through options like short-term steroids, a hypoallergenic diet trial, and the various antihistamines to target the allergies themselves.
The average vet (like the average MD) knows very little about providing low cost / holistic solutions to common issues and often medicines cause issues down the road. IMHO, it is worth it to wait 2-3 days and test out the anti-inflammatory/allergen free diet, rather than risk aggressively medicating and causing imbalances in other systems.
Based on what I've learned about brain chemistry, I no longer take Benedryl, Sudafed, or ANY antihistamine, for instance. I used to consider them rather innocuous, but too many neurologists see links down the road to greater disorders than just a runny nose.
Steroids cause hormonal changes that DO impact the intestinal flora - where ~70% of your immunity is produced. It is better to support the dog's immunity through cutting carbs, than to disrupt it with steroids.