Is Atopic Dermatitis In Dogs Heritable? Important Questions Answered

Is atopic dermatitis in dogs heritable? Many dog owners ask this question, as it’s important to understand how the disease works and what you can do to prevent it from happening. Plus, if your dog has been diagnosed with atopic dermatitis, it can help you determine if other family members are likely to get the same condition.

In this article, we’ll answer some common questions about whether the autoimmune disease is genetic and what that means for your family pet. We’ll cover everything you need to know about atopy inheritance and how it affects dogs. Let’s jump right into the basics of this topic.

Atopic Dermatitis Is a Skin Condition

In a survey conducted by PubMed on the prevalence of dermatological disorders in Iranian domestic dogs, 17% of the studied population was found to be suffering from some kind of dermatological disorder. This means that skin disorders in dogs are a common problem. 

Atopic Dermatitis is one such disorder. As the name indicates, atopic dermatitis is a skin condition that can affect dogs of any age. However, it’s most common in young dogs, and it tends to follow a pattern of flare-ups and remissions. Because atopic dermatitis is not contagious, you won’t have to worry about spreading it to other pets or members of your family.

It’s Caused by Allergies

In order to understand why your pup is suffering from this condition, it’s important to know that allergies are caused by an overactive immune system. Allergies can be environmental or food-related. They can occur seasonally or year-round and be triggered by pollen, dust mites, mold, or even the chemicals used in certain types of cleaning products.

These days there are many ways to help manage atopic dermatitis in dogs. For example, avoiding triggers such as grass while they’re outside and using a shampoo that’s specifically designed to calm the skin down after bathing. 

But if you want to prevent your pup from developing this condition altogether, you should try medications like Atopica for dogs 10 mg, which are known to provide instant relief from itching and scratching. 

Cats and Humans Can Get It, Too

Atopic dermatitis can affect cats and humans alike. If a cat develops atopic dermatitis, he can pass it on to his human owner. Cats with atopic dermatitis may lick their paws or scratch their ears and transfer the condition to their owners. This is why it’s important for people with atopic allergies to keep their pets’ nails trimmed and take good care of them, so they don’t develop this condition themselves.

Atopic dermatitis in humans is not contagious. Because we’re not limited by our immune systems when it comes to keeping infections from spreading, there’s nothing stopping us from touching other people if we want to.

What Are The Symptoms?

The first symptom is usually irritation, itching, and scratching. This can cause the skin to become more inflamed as time goes on. Scaling may also occur, which means that your dog’s skin will start to flake off in small pieces. If you have an atopic dog, you may also notice redness or inflammation around the affected area.

The symptoms of atopic dermatitis vary from case to case, but some common signs, like itchy skin, scaling, and inflammation, are common in most cases. 

It’s Not Contagious

Unlike many other types of allergies, it’s not contagious or infectious. Atopic dermatitis doesn’t spread from one dog to another as the flu does. It also isn’t a virus, bacteria, fungus, or parasite. If your pup has this skin condition that’s causing itching and scratching around areas like his paws or face, it’s important to know that it’s not going to spread throughout your home.

Genetics Plays a Role

It is not known if atopic dermatitis in dogs can be passed down from parents to offspring, but there may be a genetic predisposition toward the condition. An article published in ScienceDaily claims that there could be a connection between the prevalence of atopic dermatitis in dogs with some regions of the dog’s genome. A dog that has one parent who suffers from this condition may be more likely to develop it as well.

The genes involved with atopic dermatitis in dogs are not fully understood, but there are several theories on how they work. The most common theory is that those with the gene variant carry an overactive immune system, and this causes inflammation when exposed to allergens such as pollen or dust mites. This inflammation then results in symptoms like scratching and excessive licking of the paws or muzzle.

Ways to Treat the Symptoms

Atopic dermatitis is a lifelong condition, but it can be managed. There are several treatment options available for your dog’s atopic dermatitis. These include topical ointments and baths, oral medications, and environmental cleaning. 

Topical creams and ointments are the most effective way to control the symptoms of atopic dermatitis. However, they can be quite expensive and may not be covered by your insurance provider. Oral medications are available if you have an especially difficult case of atopic dermatitis in your dog’s skin or allergies that have been resistant to other treatments.

Baths can help control symptoms as well. Just make sure that you don’t use a shampoo that contains fragrances or other chemicals that could irritate your pet’s skin further. In addition to bathing with these products regularly, keeping the environment clean wherever your dog spends time will also help decrease inflammation over time, so it does not become too severe.


As per Statista, the revenue generated by veterinary activities in the United States amounted to USD 45.43 billion in 2022. This means that many people are regularly visiting their vets with a host of disorders in their animal friends. 

And atopic dermatitis is one such common skin condition that affects many dogs. If you think your dog has this condition, it’s best to get him checked out by a vet right away. It’s also important for you to keep track of how much food he eats in order to prevent weight loss from occurring due to diarrhea or vomiting caused by the medications prescribed by the vet. 

If he does have the condition, then there are several things they can do to manage it and make it more tolerable for your pet. Medication and environmental control are key to managing atopic dermatitis in your dog.

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