Dog Food Allergies: Symptoms, Causes, And Treatment

You probably heard a lot about allergies before. Maybe you even know someone who carries around an epi-pen all the time. Indeed, food allergies are one of the most common hypersensitivity reactions found in humans and dogs.

Food allergy develops as some allergen enters the dog’s body and provokes the immune system. The allergen works as a foreign body. Hence, the body recognizes as an intruder and groups up against it to eliminate the allergen from the body. 

As a result, all those reactions you see are because the immune system is blasting off against the food that works as an allergen. 

This is the most effective way to avoid such reactions to prevent the reaction from happening in the first place. For this, you need to know what foods initiate hypersensitivity in your dog. As your poodle grows and you feed them all kinds of food, you will eventually realize what foods they do not respond to well.

For your ease, here is a list of common food allergies for you to stay cautious when feeding your dog these kinds of food. 

What Are Common Food Cause Allergies in Dogs?

Once you know what foods cause allergies, it will become easier for you to regulate and monitor what goes into your dog’s tummy. The foods that are listed below have been reported to evoke an immune response. 

Proteins 

By far, protein has been the biggest culprit in developing allergies in dogs. If your furry dogs feed on a lot of protein almost all the time, there are high chances of them developing allergies later in life. 

Proteins mean meat and a few vegetables, but high amounts are found in meat. Chicken, lamb, pork, beef are all high protein sources, and you should avoid giving your dog any kind of pet food based on protein. 

Dairy Products

Dairy products are another food allergen your dog may become hypersensitive to. Milk and other dairy products will cause hypersensitivity reactions in your dog at any age and in any breed. 

Dogs can really be allergic to more than one ingredient. Other common elements include soy, wheat, rice, and fish. 

What Symptoms Can A Dog Develop?

Various symptoms can occur in an allergic dog. Fortunately, allergic reactions produce symptoms that are not hard to tell that have happened due to allergies. Unlike many other diseases in dogs that present with vague symptoms that often lead nowhere, one can tell right away when a dog suffers from allergic reactions. 

Some of these symptoms include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Redness
  • Severe itching 
  • Scratching ears
  • Biting themselves
  • Breathing discomfort
  • Clear fluid discharge from nose
  • Teary eyes
  • Inflammation 
  • Hives
  • Swelling
  • Incessant sneezing 

How Is Food Allergy Diagnosed?

Food allergies are often not easy to diagnose. You or your dog’s vet may not have any clue of what may have aroused a reaction in your pet. There is no definitive test that determines that a dog is allergic to certain types of food. 

However, what a vet can do is to find out foods that irritate your dog. It means they will have to continue feeding them regular food to observe what triggers the reaction. This is called an elimination diet. 

A vet feeds a dog some foods and keeps crossing the list of foods that do not trigger an allergic reaction. This way, the list will taper down to foods that do cause hypersensitivity in the dog. 

The trial includes feeding your dog one pure source of carbohydrates and one type of protein for 12 weeks and reverting to giving them the same food that probably provoked your dog’s immune system. 

It is crucial to stay highly vigilant during this period and not feed your dog anything out of the trial food to prevent the experiment from going wrong. 

What Is The Treatment For Allergies?

The best-proven treatment to help with allergies is changing the diet. If any ingredient causes allergies, simply stop feeding it anymore. This is the definitive treatment for your dog, and anything outside may not be as helpful as a diet without allergens. 

Apart from diet, medications also keep allergic reactions under control to an excellent extent. It is hard to patrol like a police officer around your pet and forbid them from eating something triggering.

In any case, a dog develops a reaction; you can always give them medications to subside the symptoms. Your vet will prescribe you some medicines that will suit your dog and show immediate results. 

Are There Any Long-term Effects Of Allergies?

Dogs don’t die from mild allergic reactions. On the other hand, they may even suffer from severe reactions that can be fatal. 

Most cases of allergies in dogs are mild, but that should not keep you from being extra careful. Allergic reactions significantly affect the way your dog lives. Imagine scratching all day or having runny eyes or nose that prevents them from playing or sleeping is troublesome. 

Long-term allergy symptoms will also challenge your dog mentally. You may even notice a few behavioral changes and observe that your dog is irritable almost all day. It will rip them off a quality life, and they may struggle to live a regular life when allergies keep them busy. 

Final Word 

There is no perfect kind of food for dogs with allergies. Sensitive dogs end up having allergies one way or another. What you need to do is to beware of what products your dog eats. Every product may have some amount of ingredients your dog is allergic to. 

Just make sure you don’t buy food containing allergens, and your dog will continue to be a happy and lively furry friend of yours. 

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