Hi! My puppy is 4 1/2 months old and I'm noticing an increase in scratching and some nipping at himself. I have him on Nutro Large Breed Puppy (chicken). The lady at the pet store mentioned that labs can be prone to allergies to chicken. Does this sound like he may be developing them? If so, should I switch to the lamb already?
4 1/2 months is a little too young for allergies, although I suppose its possible. Yes, some dogs don't tolerate chicken very well. Try switching to the lamb. Also, make sure his scratching is not being caused by something simple like fleas. Don't pass it off as an allergy just yet. The only real way to tell if a dog has a food allergy is by an elimination diet which I would not recommend for a growing pup.
my dog has reactions to fleas. You can try to give capstar. If it is fleas - every single one of them will die in just 2-3 hours. If it is a large infestation, you will start to see them jump ship. If it is just a few, then you probably will not. If it is fleas, the scratching will intially get worse on capstar, but then in about 3 hours he would pretty much stop scratching.
If you need to "bomb"/ fog your house, then doing it right after you do the capstar is advised. Then make sure you keep up to date on the flea medicine - every 30 days. Frontline Plus is better than K9 advantix when it comes to fleas. Keeping your dog on Frontline plus will eventually break the cycle.
Sometimes just one flea bite from one single flea can cause the itch.
Also, I am not sure where you live, but it is Hay fever season in NY. It could be airborn allergies. If that is the case, whatever he is allergic to should start to get better in about a month. Usually dogs are just allergic to one airborne allergen, not all. So as soon as it goes away, your dog should be symptom free, until next season.
I think there is a much greater chance it is airborn or fleas than food allergies at this point.
If you go to the vet and they do not see fleas, they will say it is food or airborn. It can still be fleas, just that the dog is not infested. I would ask for the capstar to see what happens. It is a great drug. If drugs can be great???