Dog Food Allergies – Myths and Facts

Posted July 27, 2021 by in Lifestyle

Owning a dog means you are obligated to watch over your pet’s health and general wellbeing. The responsibility involves the dog’s grooming and the choices you make for your dog’s food. Food is the leading cause of many health complications in your dog’s immune system if not monitored well.

Dogs react differently to food, whether it being beef, lamb, soy, grains, chicken, or any other type of food. Not all dogs can be receptive to food in all categories listed above. Some dogs are prone to intolerance to a specific food or ingredient used in premium dog food.

To provide optimal health to your dog, it is necessary to understand the myths and facts regarding dog food allergies discussed below:

Myths

The following are common myths associated with dog food allergies and counter facts to debunk the myths subsequently.

Gastrointestinal Symptoms is a Sign of Dog Food Allergies

It is common to assume that gastrointestinal issues like vomiting, gas, and diarrhea are common dog food allergy symptoms. This assumption is mainly based on the intestinal tract, most affected when an allergic reaction occurs with your pet.

Fact

There are several signs and symptoms to watch out for when dealing with dog food allergies. Apart from gastrointestinal issues, the following are some symptoms to look out for; itchiness and scratching, bald patches, skin inflammation, rashes, infections, wounds, and bleeding due to scratching.

Coughing, wheezing, and constant head shaking are also among the symptoms associated with dog food allergies.

Same Food for Years

Most pet owners are quick to mention that their dog has been feeding on the same food or premium dog food for years, so an allergy because of the choice of food cannot be a subject of discussion in this case for them.

Fact

It is essential to understand that dog food allergies develop over a long period. Consistent feeding of your dog with the same food for years can eventually trigger an immune reaction; especially, when the dog’s system senses that such ingredients or food are unwelcomed in their system.

For an allergic reaction to occur, the dog should have been fed the same food for a prolonged time, leading to the immune system releasing antibodies to fight such unwelcomed food and immediately triggering an allergic reaction.

Soy and Grains are Common Food Allergens

Soy and grain are among the types of dog food possible to trigger an allergic reaction in dogs. Soy has detrimental effects and should be avoided altogether.

Fact

Indeed, soy and grain or corn are some of the food associated with dog food allergies but not the main and common allergens. Beef, wheat, dairy, and chicken are the top dog food with immense allergies. For instance, chicken allergies in dogs can be so severe if not identified and treated early. To learn more about chicken allergy in dogs, please find more information here: https://whatthepup.spotandtango.com/chicken-allergy-in-dogs/

Therefore, be mindful of beef, wheat, dairy, and chicken when dealing with dog food allergens, and do not limit yourself to soy and corn alone.

Switch to Any Food to Avoid Allergies

If you find out that your dog is intolerant or allergic to the dog food you have fed them, for instance, you can switch to other dog food brands to avoid allergies.

Fact

Instant switching to a different dog food brand cannot be the solution you need to cure dog food allergies. Consulting with your veterinarian is the most appropriate thing to do when you witness symptoms of food allergies. Take your dog to the vet for blood tests, analysis, and diet recommendations.

Switching to other dog food is not ideal because most dog foods have the same ingredients. It is likely for your dog to be exposed to the same elements they were allergic to initially. Consulting with a vet will give you great insights on how to approach dog food allergies. 

The appropriate response to dog food allergies you will get from your vet will be placing your dog under a specific diet, like hypoallergic proteins or novel proteins. This type of protein will be new to the dog’s system and easily digestible. 

Once the dog’s health improves, try reintroducing the initial diet. If the allergic reaction comes back, then sticking to the vet recommended diet indefinitely and alternating this with homemade meals will be more probable moving forward.

*Photos by Valeria Boltneva