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What are Flea Collar Allergies?

Many owners like flea collars for their dogs because it does not involve putting a liquid on his back monthly or remembering to give a pill. Unlike liquids that get dispersed throughout your dog’s coat, the flea collar remains in one place while on. Yes, the active ingredient gets dispersed throughout his fur over time, but the collar which has the most potency, says in one place. This can cause multiple types of allergies to develop in your dog. Contact allergies and respiratory allergies are the most commonly seen allergy symptoms in dogs in regards to flea collars, but in the most severe cases, it can even lead to death. If you put a flea collar on your dog and he begins to act abnormally, remove the flea collar immediately and take him to a veterinarian. The sooner you get him veterinary treatment, the better his chances of a full recovery.

Flea collars have been a type of flea preventative in dogs for many years. While the quality of the flea collars may have improved throughout the years, some dogs are allergic to the ones on the market today. If you believe your dog is experiencing an allergy related to a flea collar, remove it immediately and contact your veterinarian.

Flea Collar Allergies Average Cost

From 466 quotes ranging from $200 - $800

Average Cost

$400

Symptoms of Flea Collar Allergies in Dogs

Severity of flea collar allergies in dogs can vary from mild to severe. Symptoms may include

  • Runny nose
  • Watery eyes
  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Respiratory distress
  • Skin inflammation
  • Loss of hair
  • Rash
  • Itchy skin
  • Hives
  • Lethargy 
  • Death 

Flea collars can also be toxic to dogs. If your dog is experiencing any of these symptoms or something more severe, remove the flea collar and contact your veterinarian immediately. In worst case scenarios, a flea collar can kill your dog if you do not seek the proper treatment.

Types

Flea collars are commonly used as a flea preventative due to their convenience. Certain flea collars can be purchased over the counter, but some must be purchased from a veterinarian only. 

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Causes of Flea Collar Allergies in Dogs

Different brands of flea collars contain different active ingredients. The most common active ingredient in flea collars includes amitraz, pyrethrins, organophosphates, or carbamates. Symptoms of an allergy may appear immediately, within a few hours, or within days. When you put the flea collar on your dog, his immune system thinks the ingredients in the collar poses a threat and therefore the body does what it can to protect itself. This results in your dog experiencing allergy-like symptoms.

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Diagnosis of Flea Collar Allergies in Dogs

When you first arrive at the veterinarian’s office, she will begin by performing a physical examination on your dog. This will allow her to note any abnormalities of his vitals as well as observe of all his symptoms. If your dog is experiencing any sort of coughing, wheezing, or other respiratory problem, the veterinarian may take a radiograph. This will allow her to check for and rule out another cause of the symptoms like pneumonia or bronchitis. 

Blood work will be performed to give the veterinarian a broad look as to how the internal organs are functioning. A complete blood count (CBC) and chemistry panel will provide the veterinarian with needed information for proper assessment. A packed cell volume (PCV) may also be performed to determine hydration status. If your veterinarian feels it is necessary, she may also perform a urinalysis for further evaluation of kidney function.

If your dog’s skin has a rash or is inflamed in any way, your veterinarian may take a skin scraping sample to rule out external parasites or a bacterial overgrowth. Some dogs develop skin irritation or hair loss around the neck where the collar is. This makes it quite obvious the collar is potentially the problem.

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Treatment of Flea Collar Allergies in Dogs

Immediate removal of the flea collar is imperative. Depending what symptoms your dog is experiencing will determine his course of treatment. If your dog is experiencing any type of respiratory distress, he will be started on oxygen immediately. 

Some type of medicinal ointment or cream may be applied to any areas of fur loss or inflammation to increase healing time. The veterinarian may also recommend a bath with a mild detergent to remove the medication of the collar from your dog’s coat. 

An antihistamine may be given to help decrease any swelling, itching, hives, or any other allergic response your dog may be experiencing. There are other medications your veterinarian can give to help with any itching, but in reality this only masks the symptoms. If you do not remove the source of the problem, the symptoms will continue.

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Recovery of Flea Collar Allergies in Dogs

The sooner you receive veterinary care for your dog, the better his chances of a full recovery. Some dogs only have mild allergy type reactions to flea collars, but some can have severe, life-threatening symptoms. Once the flea collar is removed and as much as the medication from the collar washed from your dog’s coat, the veterinarian will treat the symptoms and offer supportive care. If you sought out veterinary care quickly, the prognosis of a full recovery is good. If you have any doubts or questions about the use of a flea collar on your dog, discuss it with your veterinarian. Together you will come up with the best flea treatment plan for your dog.

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Flea Collar Allergies Average Cost

From 466 quotes ranging from $200 - $800

Average Cost

$400

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Flea Collar Allergies Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

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American Bully

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Five Months

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Unknown severity

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9 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Redness

My dog has a red rash looking thing under his flea collar

Sept. 28, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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9 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. Many OTC flea collars can cause skin irritation, and they don't tend to work very well. If he is developing a rash, it would be best to take the collar off and call your veterinarian to see what flea control options they recommend so that this is no longer a problem. I hope that all goes well for him.

Oct. 5, 2020

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Terrier

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Three Years

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Unknown severity

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2 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Coughing

Can a tight seresto collar cause a dog to cough

Sept. 27, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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2 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. A tight collar of any kind might cause a dog to cough, yes. There are many other causes for coughing, however, and it your pet is still coughing once you take the collar off or loosen it, It would be best to have them seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine your pet and see what might be causing this, and let you know what treatment might help.

Oct. 11, 2020

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Flea Collar Allergies Average Cost

From 466 quotes ranging from $200 - $800

Average Cost

$400

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