How to Treat Hives on a Dog

By Mary Lougee

Immediate hypersensitivity occurs as an allergic reaction to an inhalant, something in your dog's environment or food. It manifests itself in an intense, itchy rash, called hives, or urticaria. The allergic reaction causes red, swollen areas to appear on your dog within minutes or hours. The hives are usually on his legs, eyelids, neck, back or flanks. If hives occur from a bee sting, your precious pet may experience swelling around his face and lips, resulting in anaphylaxis, which can lead to death. As soon as you see hives on your dog, get him to the veterinarian immediately to determine the course of treatment, which may be antihistamine or corticosteroid injections.

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Follow your veterinarian's directions when giving your canine friend antihistamine pills or applying it in a spray form to your pet. The dosage and frequency will depend on your dog's circumstances and diagnosis.

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Use hydrocortisone spray as prescribed by your veterinarian on your dog's hives. This type of spray decreases itching so he does not continue to scratch and eventually cause the lesions to become infected.

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Administer the amount of Milk of Magnesia to your dog as recommended by your veterinarian for food allergies. Milk of Magnesia will coat his stomach to lessen the effects of hives and decrease itching.

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Give your dog a bath in cool water with the addition of aloe vera, or tea tree oil as directed by your vet. This decreases the redness, swelling and itching of hives.