Seeing your dog covered in allergy bumps is worrisome. Allergic bumps or hives are a frequent issue in canines. In this article, I, Ivana Crnec, DVM, will cover the basics of grass allergies in dogs.

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  1. Can Dogs be Allergic to Grass
  2. Dog Grass Allergy Symptoms
  3. How to Treat Dog Grass Allergies
  4. Conclusion

Can Dogs be Allergic to Grass

Yes, dogs can be allergic to grass.

"Grass allergies, which are common in dogs, are inhalant or contact allergies that can be caused by pollen associated with grasses," says Mindy Joyner, DVM, in an article for PetMD.

Inhalant grass allergies in dogs are widespread in spring and fall when the airborne particles are dense, while contact allergies occur year-round whenever the dog touches the allergen grass.

The allergic contact dermatitis caused by grass is believed to be a “type IV hypersensitivity reaction,” explains a 2023 Veterinary Dermatology research paper.

Keeping a GPS tracker on your dog helps if there are certain areas with specific grasses you need to avoid due to inhalant or contact allergies.

Dog Grass Allergy Symptoms

Allergy bumps, medically known as hives, are the telltale symptom of a sensitivity reaction to grass. The hives are raised skin lesions with defined margins and are unevenly distributed on the dog’s body.

A 2023 Veterinary Dermatology study says, "Dogs had an inflammatory and pruritic dermatitis affecting the ventral chest, anterior-medial thighs and distal limb, areas that had been in contact with grass."

Other signs of dog allergy symptoms include:

  • Itchiness (Pruritus): Generalized itchiness or regional itchy skin on contact areas is commonly seen in dogs with grass allergies.
  • Hair Loss: The skin irritation triggers continuous itching, which damages hair follicles and culminates in patchy loss of hair.
  • Skin Lesions and Rashes: The itching and irritation result in self-inflicted injuries and rashes prone to secondary bacterial infections.
  • Nose Irritation: A runny nose (rhinorrhea) accompanied by sneezing and pawing at the nose is seen in dogs with grass allergies.
  • Red, Runny Eyes: Grass allergies irritate the dog’s eyes, making them red and runny, causing allergic conjunctivitis.

How to Treat Dog Grass Allergies

The treatment of dog grass allergies is multimodal and includes:

  • Minimizing the dog’s exposure to known offending grasses
  • Using wet wipes to thoroughly clean the dog after outdoor time
  • Hypoallergenic and soothing, oatmeal-based shampoos
  • Antihistamines, such as Benadryl® (diphenhydramine) or Zyrtec® (cetirizine)
  • Short-term corticosteroid (prednisone, prednisolone) use
  • Oral (Apoquel®) or injectable (Cytopoint®) anti-allergy medications
  • Allergy shots, also known as hyposensitization or immunotherapy

“My dog has been tested and is allergic to Bermuda. His allergy shots controlled his itch but still would get hot spots. We changed our grass to Saint Augustine and guess what, no more itching or hot spots from rolling on the grass,” explains a Reddit user.

Managing a dog with a grass allergy is costly, and having the Petcube Emergency Fund helps. It offers $3,000 for emergency vet bills and access to online vets. Use this link to get the fund with a 27% discount.


Grasses trigger allergies in dogs when their pollen is inhaled or upon direct skin contact. Hives are a telltale sign and warrant veterinary attention. The treatment for grass allergies is complex and can be expensive.

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