Dog Food Allergy
Food can be a leading cause of allergies in dogs. Just like humans, dogs too are prone to suffer from various kinds of allergies caused from the food that they consume. Either one or more ingredients present in the dog food can be the reason for the allergy in your pet.
Some of the common food items that could cause an allergy in your dog included:
- dairy products
It’s these allergy incitants that are most frequent in ready-made pet food.
Proteins, lipoproteins, liposaccharides can provoke an allergic reaction. Artificial preservatives and flavorings included in dog food also can be a cause for food allergies. The reaction to food ingredients is conditioned by their size. Allergy can be caused by the molecules with mass more than 10 kDa.
Dog food allergies make about 10% of all types of allergic reactions to which these animals are susceptible. But it is almost impossible to identify this disorder at its early stage without serious clinical procedures.
You can recognize a food allergy by carefully observing your dog and its behavior. An itchy and inflamed rear end is one of the main symptoms of a food allergy. Other symptoms include ear infection, chronic diarrhea & gas, skin irritation and constant paw licking. Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds, Dachshunds and Cocker Spaniels, are some of the dog breeds that are most prone to be infected with food allergies.
Increased exposure to the ingredient responsible for the allergy will intensify your pet’s suffering. Finding the ingredient that is causing the allergy and removing it completely from the dog’s diet is the best solution to cure this kind of allergies.
Tracking the ingredient that is causing the allergy is not an easy task. You may have to find dog foods with dissimilar main substances and try out each of these foods with your dog. Use food items with a different mix of the main ingredients for this purpose. Keep a track of the ingredients and observe any allergic symptoms in your dog. This will take some time, and it is not an easy task by any means. Trial and error is the only way to single out the ingredient that is causing the allergy in your pet.
However, if your dog have frequent allergies despite changing of dog food preference, then, it will be advisable to opt for a hypoallergenic dog food. It is composed of all natural ingredients with minimal or no preservative component, making it appropriate for highly sensitive dogs.
Sometimes allergy symptoms may be hard to distinguish from a regular dog illness especially with an untrained eye. During these circumstances, it is advisable to consult a veterinarian. An allergy diagnosis will confirm if your dog needs a hypoallergenic food. The culprit to be blamed for causing the allergy is usually determined as well with the help of a veterinarian.
What is Hypoallergenic Dog Food?
Dog food manufacturers have come up with an effective solution to this common predicament among pet owners. These companies have ventured into the production of hypoallergenic dog food in order to combat these allergic reactions. When a dog is put on hypoallergenic dog food for a certain period of time, the allergies are likely to subside and completely disappear thereafter.
The high demand for hypoallergenic dog food is triggered by the rising cases of dog food allergies worldwide. The production of hypoallergenic dog food does not use ingredients that have a high chance of provoking an allergic reaction. These food items are manufactured using natural ingredients, and no artificial coloring or preservatives are used in the manufacturing process. They are also devoid of any fillers: made of meat by products that could cause an allergic skin irritation in your dog. In addition, the method of hydrolysis is used in the production, which allows to split proteins into subcomponents that do not cause any harmful reactions.
Many hypoallergenic dog food brands actively advertise that they are designed to eliminate all common allergens that cause an issue among pets. Buying allergenic food items from a credible company is the best way to guarantee the safety of your loving pet. There are several renowned brands of hypoallergenic pet foods manufactured by the stalwarts in the pet food manufacturing industry. These brands are safe and always advisable than any other brand that is quite new to the industry.
While analyzing the brands, make sure that you take the overall nutrition into consideration. The basic dog nutrition facts can be accessed through the web, and you will be able to make comparisons with some of the reputed brands to see what brand is best for your dog. The Internet will help you to get reviews on various brands of hypoallergenic food manufacturers. There are some good brands that are quite inexpensive compared to others. This will help you to allay any fear of the pricing factor of this kind of foods.
Here are some food brands for dogs with allergy:
- Hill’s PD Canine z/d – food for dogs with acute food allergy;
- Eukanuba Dermatosis – dry food for dogs with inflammatory skin diseases;
- ROYAL CANIN – Hypoallergenic DR 21, HP Hypoallergenic and so on;
- ADVANCE Dermatosis Limited Antigen – medicated dog food;
- Happy Dog – medicated food for dogs having problems with skin and hair;
- Pro Plan HA Hydrolyzed – prophylactic food that prevents allergy development.
Whenever the allergy is very severe enough to threaten the physical appearance and life of your dog, then, prompt for hypoallergenic dog food as soon as possible. Consulting the veterinarian will guide you in choosing the right hypoallergenic food. Or keep on reading the next topic about how to choose the best hypoallergenic food for your dog.
Choosing Hypoallergenic Dog Food
The first thing you should look for in hypoallergenic dog food is a list of the ingredients in the types of foods being reviewed. A good hypoallergenic dog food will be made up of a small number of ingredients. These ingredients should be all-natural and recognizable (not multi-syllable chemicals). Because the list of ingredients in these specialized dog foods are so small, it is unlikely that they will contain the allergy causing issue.
Additionally, when dog food is made up of only a few ingredients, it will be easier for you to isolate an ingredient that causes a problem in the event your dog does not respond well. This will help you choose a better brand in the future.
It may also be made up of some unusual ingredients. For example, buffalo and rice, venison and rice, rabbit and rice are frequently seen combinations. Occasionally, you will see very offbeat ingredients such as millet or kangaroo. Fewer and unusual ingredients are less likely to trigger allergic reactions.
Look out for ingredients that may trigger immune system reactions, such as yeast, soy, wheat, corn, beef and dairy products. These ingredients are ubiquitous, and many dogs have already formed negative immune system reactions to them. Lesser ingredients to be cautious of are lamb, chicken and fish. Remember that the more commonly an ingredient is used in a food, the more likely the development of allergy symptoms.
When selecting hypoallergenic dog food, be sure to sort out a small selection of highly rated hypoallergenic food brands. Compare them carefully in terms of ingredients, price and user ratings. Be sure to read all comments and pay close attention to those that describe symptoms similar to those your dog experiences. Double check with your veterinarian if in doubt when choosing the right hypoallergenic food brand for your dog.
To fully ensure that they can work effectively, it is important that all family members are reminded not to feed any food scraps from the table to the dog. This is another way to ensure that you are actively eliminating all food products that could be causing the problem.
Once you have found a food that does work with your pet, you can simply feed this to them on a permanent basis. It is up to you whether you want to try adding new foods back into their diet and see if they cause an allergy, or whether you just feed them the hypoallergenic dog food only.
Dog owners are advised to change the hypoallergenic food whenever they notice any signs of food allergies. This is quite rare, and the situation will completely recede when your pet get used to the hypoallergenic food. Finding and sticking to the best brand of hypoallergenic food is the most appropriate solution to overcome this kind of situation. Make the transition now and save your pet from food allergies for good.
If you are able to prepare dog food at home, here are some homemade hypoallergenic dog food recipes you should check.
If Hypoallergenic Food Does Not Help
You may choose the very best hypoallergenic food after rigorous research and find that your dog still exhibits allergy symptoms caused by over stimulation of the immune system by an allergen. Symptoms may include excessive scratching, licking and chewing, rashes on the skin and occasionally vomiting and nausea.
When this is the case, you must visit your veterinarian to find out if your dog’s problems are caused by something other than food. For example, you dog may have flea allergies or environmental allergies. He may be allergic to the fabric of his bed or the type of wash you use when you bathe him. Your vet can run tests to determine if something other than food is to blame.
It may also be the case that your dog is not actually allergic to the food you give him. It may be that he is experiencing a food reaction, or he may be intolerant to some types of foods. Food intolerance, such as lactose intolerance, occurs when an animal or human’s digestive system is simply not able to process a certain type of food. Symptoms of food intolerance include flatulence, bloated stomach, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and other signs of digestive problems.
Using hypoallergenic dog food will not only prevent the development of allergic reactions but also avoid many diseases connected with decrease in immunity.
A dog that is suffering from allergies will be an unhappy pet indeed. Take the time to discover why they are not doing well with their foodstuffs and put them back on the road to recovery and happiness. Providing quality care to your dogs is a rewarding task for them; choose only the safest dog food around!