Monday, 6 December 2010
Inhalant allergies are common in more than 15% of purebred dogs (Thornton). Dogs suffer from inhalant allergies caused by pollen, mold, and other aeroallergens. Dogs show signs of an allergy by scratching, chewing, or licking and sometimes rashes or hive may appear, usually diagnosed as Atopy, a condition when a dog has a predisposition for developing antibodies to environmental allergens (Duval). The allergic reaction that occurs with allergens is due to Immunoglobulin IgE. When a dog is exposed to the allergen again, the IgE antibody binds to the allergen and histamine is released (Duval). Histamine causes the red, itchy irritation of the skin leading to licking and scratching. We compared the clinical charts of dogs admitted to the Coulter Animal Hospital for allergies with the aeroallergen indices recorded for a decade at the West Texas A&M University. We assessed the effectiveness of the Luna-Air Oasis InductACT air purifiers that were placed in the main air duct of the clinic. Ten microscopic slides adhered with double sticky tape were placed around the main exam room of the clinic before the purifiers were turned on. Next, slides were placed the same spots after running the purifiers for one week. Slides were stained with 2% safranin, mounted with Gelvatol emulsion, observed with a Bx-51 Olympus microscope equipped with digital camera, Image Pro Plus software. The Volatile Organic Compound capture tubes were used before and after running the air purifiers to assess the capacity of the air purifiers in reducing the VOCs in the clinic. The capture tube was inserted into a suction pump and allowed to run for 55 min. at a flow of 250 ml/min and a Volume of 27.74 L. The indoor temp was 71o
F and 27% humidity. Experiment was replicated thrice by running 3 sets of VOC tubes before and after running the air purifiers. Aeroallergen data analyzed from collected slides indicated a gradual reduction in bacteria and mold population in the indoor air after running the air purifiers. The VOC composition in the indoor air increased initially, that got reduced finally after running the air purifiers for one week. We also found significant correlation between the aeroallergen index and the frequency of inhalant allergy cases among dogs.
*Duval, D, Giger U. (1996). Vaccine-associated immune-mediated hemolytic anemia in the dog. J Vet Int Med 1996; 10: 290-295.
*Thornton, K. C. (2006).Dog Gnawing, Scratching, Licking and Biting Can be Due to Allergies.
Web link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10810970/