It’s that time of year again. Many of us humans are sniffing and sneezing thanks to all those environmental changes that come with Spring. But we’re not the only ones. Many of our poor pups are also feeling the effects! And while some might opt for pharmaceuticals to stem the flow of snot (sorry), there are other options that are natural and work really well!
We’re talking about quercetin for dogs, otherwise known as Nature’s Bendryl!
So, what is quercetin for dogs, why is it amazing for seasonal allergies in dogs, and how do you use it? If you’ve noticed you dog scratching more often than normal, licking their paws, or rubbing their faces and red eyes, you’re going to want to get some of this stuff!
But first, how can you tell if your dog is suffering from seasonal allergies?
Seasonal Allergies in Dogs
Like us, our dogs can suffer from all different types of allergies: environmental (seasonal), food sensitivities/allergies, even flea dermatitis. So how can you determine if it’s the season that’s causing the sneezing and scratching?
The easiest way to tell is the timing. If your dog seems fine in the winter, but then once the grass starts to grow and the trees start budding, things start to get bad, that’s a pretty good indication. If your dog starts itching after eating chicken, you’re probably not going to blame the seasons…
What causes the flare-ups? Allergies are caused by your dog’s immune system reacting to something in their environment. This could be grass or plant pollen, dust, mold or something else in the air. When the immune system senses one of these things, it flags them as a threat, and wants to eliminate them. Cue the itching, scratching, runny nose, and red eyes…
Related: Did you know that dogs can have an allergic reaction to many commercial cleaning products? It’s true. Ditch those chemical-based cleaners and go the natural route with these recipes!
Quercetin for Dogs
Quercetin is a flavonoid commonly found in fruits and vegetables.
With regard to allergies, you’ve probably heard about histamine, right? Histamine is released by your dog’s body when it encounters an allergen. An overload of histamine in the body can cause those allergy symptoms we mentioned earlier.
Thankfully, that histamine is part of why quercetin works so well. Research shows us that quercetin actually contains antihistamine compounds that can stop this histamine production! Beauty. Additionally, it can also help inhibit cellular activity that causes inflammation, which in turn reduces allergy symptoms.
One of the best things about quercetin, aside from those antihistamine properties, is its status as a powerful antioxidant. Quercetin can help fight free radicals, those unstable molecules in that body that increase your dog’s risk of disease!!
Because quercetin is a natural flavonoid, it is very safe to use and side effects are mainly upset tummy-related, and really uncommon.
Natural Sources of Quercetin
You can buy a quercetin supplement to get a concentrated dose, but you can also add foods that contain it right to your dog’s food bowl!
Some of our favorite sources of quercetin are:
- citrus fruits
- green and black tea (these are great as a rinse for irritated paws or itchy skin!)
**It’s also found in grapes, onions, cherries, and red wine, but we DON’T recommend these for your pet! For yourself however, add them to your own diet if you’re feeling run-down with seasonal allergies!
Quercetin is also present in herbal remedies, such as ginkgo biloba and St John’s wort.
How Much to Give?
Quercetin products made for humans may contain ingredients that you should avoid giving to your dog. If you’re sourcing a human product, do your research and read the label carefully for other additives. For this reason it’s always best to choose a product that has been made for animal use.
Two substances you might find alongside the quercetin in a supplant are bromelain and papain. These are enzymes that are often combined with quercetin to boost its effectiveness. They help suppress the release of prostaglandins, which decreases the pain and inflammation further. Both are ok for your pup.
When determining dosage of a supplement:
- Canine product – follow the directions on the label.
- Human product – Multiply your dog’s weight by 1000, then divide it by 125 to get the milligram dosage your pet needs.
This allergy season, give those symptoms the boot with a little help from Mother Nature herself!
The Veterinarious team is made up of pet owners, pet lovers, and pet experts from around the globe! We’ve banded together to create a community of like-minded pet people to give you the latest research and health advice for your beloved beast!