Increase in Flea Allergy Dermatitis in Dogs and Cats

Published by I Love Veterinary

Updated on

I Love Veterinary blog is reader-supported, and we may earn a commission from products purchased through links on this page, at no additional cost to you. Learn more About Us and our Product Review Process >

A recent research study, conducted by Benfield Pet Hospital for their State of Pet Health Report for 2018, had its focus on skin allergies in domestic animals. Their highlights show a significant increase in FAD ( flea allergy dermatitis ) in the past 10 years, more precisely 67% increase in cats and 13% increase in dogs. The experts say that the overall prevalence is still fairly low.

Flea Allergy Dermatitis in Dogs and Cats
Photo by Jared Belson

According to Emi Saito, a senior manager at Banfield’s veterinary research programs, flea allergy dermatitis was diagnosed in 170 out of 10 000 cats that were seen in their hospitals last year, compared to 102 out of 10 000 in 2008. For dogs, these numbers are 154 dogs diagnosed with flea allergy dermatitis out of 10 000 seen in their hospitals last year, compared to 137 dogs in 2008.

Their report says that the increase in flea allergy diagnosis is due to the increase of domestic animals infested with fleas. This is happening because with all the climate changes the fleas are getting more and more resilient and the classic anti-flea spot-on or collars for their prevention have less and less effective. Fleas are a no more seasonal issue and they are becoming present everywhere (outside and inside) all year-round. Another factor that should be considered, even if we keep our pets inside all the time, is that we, the humans, can bring fleas into our home on our clothes and shoes.

The first signs for flea allergy dermatitis that you should look are skin irritation. These signs can vary from tiny red dots (aka the bite marks) or even bigger red spots if the reaction is more severe.

For some domestic animals, one bite from a flea is enough to provoke a reaction from the immune system. If you suspect that your pet might have flea allergy dermatitis contact your veterinarian.

Read the original article “Banfield: Flea allergy dermatitis up 67% in cats, 13% in dogs in past 10 years”.

If you liked this article, read “Most common external parasites in dogs and cats” on our blog.

Sharing is caring!


Project dedicated to support and help to improve Veterinary Medicine. Sharing information and raising discussions in the veterinary community.


pedialyte for dogs

Pedialyte for Dogs: 2024 Updated

8 min read

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Drop your email below to join I Love Veterinary squad and enjoy regular news, updates, exclusive content, new arrivals and more!