Allergy Symptoms In Dogs
If your dog is experiencing symptoms like itchy ears and skin or stomach issues, theres a good chance your dog may have a food allergy.
Allergies in dogs are usually genetic. When this issue is triggered, its because the dog came into contact with whatever it is he or she is allergic to. Environment can affect your dogs allergies but a genetic predisposition is almost always the root cause.
According to pets webmd, 10% of all allergy cases in dogs are food allergies. Studies are still being conducted to determine just what causes some dogs to express the trait of food allergies.
How Much Does It Cost To Get An Allergy Test For A Dog
Allergy tests are not reliable for food allergies, but they can be useful for figuring out whether your dog has an environmental allergy. Your vet might recommend blood or skin testing if they believe your dog is allergic to pollen, dust, or other environmental allergens.
So, how much does it cost to get an allergy test for a dog? The price for an allergy test varies between clinics and the number of allergens tested, but you can normally expect to pay around $200 for a skin test. Skin tests are usually done by a pet dermatologist rather than a veterinarian.
Blood tests, on the other hand, can be done by your vet. Despite being the easier route as you dont need to hunt down a specialist, there is evidence that implies that skin testing is a more reliable option. Blood tests typically cost $200 to $300.
Provoke And Pick Out Allergies One By One
With your dog safely back on their prescribed diet, its now time to test ingredients one by one.
Remember that doggy digest we talked about earlier? Thats an excellent resource to keep handy as you challenge and assess individual ingredients.
Heres how it works: first, youll offer the ingredient and then youll play the waiting game. Sometimes your dog will start itching within hours other times it will take between 3-5 days. We recommend monitoring for a minimum of two weeks. If, after the two weeks, there are no signs or symptoms of a food allergy, move on to the next.
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How Much Slippery Elm Should I Give My Dog
Dogs take slippery elm in different amounts.
Many dog owners give their dogs 100 milligrams per 10 pounds, and many inflammatory conditions require giving slippery elm multiple times daily.
Its always best to talk to your veterinarian before giving any medication to your pet. They can give you the right dosage based on your dogs needs, health, size, and age.
Can Dog’s Eat Cooked Lamb
Yes! Cooking lamb for dogs is an excellent choice because lamb is often a protein source that a lot of dogs may not have encountered before. That makes this simple homemade dog food for allergies recipe a great option for pet parents who are looking for a healthy dog food recipe with very few ingredients.
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What To Do If Your Dog Has Developed A Food Allergy
If your dog appears to have developed a food allergy, the next step is to identify which food or foods are causing your dogs health issues. To accurately diagnose what food is causing your dog to experience an allergic reaction, you must use a method called the elimination diet. To successfully create an elimination diet, you must stop feeding your dog their normal diet and start them on types of food they have never had before. If your dog has had kibble with chicken, beef, salmon, etc, you will have to find a different kind of meat-based food to give them. You may have to spring for an exotic diet until you can identify the problem foods.
If you dont want to find an exotic protein option, you could switch to a customized diet like those found from Hungry Bark. The customized and limited-ingredient diets available from Hungry Bark let you monitor exactly what ingredients are going into your dogs body. Once you know exactly what is in your dogs diet, you can assess the improvement in their symptoms and overall health in order to move forward from there.
Once your dogs food allergy symptoms improve, slowly introduce old foods that are suspected to have caused the health issues, one at a time. If your dog has a symptomatic reaction, which can take a few days to a few weeks to appear, then you know he or she has a food allergy to that specific ingredient.
Most Common Food Allergies In Dogs
While it has become common to watch out for the signs of life-threatening food allergies in young children, it still comes as a surprise to some dog parents that their four-legged companions can also suffer from food allergies.
Just like in humans, a food allergy occurs when a dogs immune system mistakenly believes a specific food is harmful. The dogs immune system responds with antibodies, which triggers a series of dangerous symptoms.
Many seemingly random symptoms can be signs of a food allergy in a dog. These include:
- Chronic ear inflammation
Other symptoms more closely mimic symptoms seen in humans with food allergies, such as:
- Skin rash
- Chronic gas
If you notice any of these symptoms in your dog, it is extremely important to have them checked out by a vet to determine if the symptoms are indeed signs of a food allergy.
The more the dog is exposed to the allergen, the more severe the reaction will become. Even if your dog is only irritated by the symptoms initially, they could be life-threatening the next time they eat the problem food.
Kinds of foods to watch out for
Dogs can be allergic to nearly any specific food ingredient. However, there are certain meats and grains that are more likely to cause an allergic reaction in your dog. These include:
If your dog is allergic to one ingredient, shes likely allergic to other ingredients as well.
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How To Figure Out What Your Dog Is Allergic To
Skin allergies and food allergies are common in dogs, but figuring out the specific thing they are sensitive to can be difficult. When a dog is allergic to something, it can cause many unpleasant symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting, and excessive scratching.
This obviously isnt very nice for your dog, so youll need to find out which ingredient your dog is intolerant to as soon as possible. Lets take a look at some ways to help you determine your dogs allergy.
Dog Food Allergy Symptoms
Sneezing. Ear infections. Chronic Diarrhea. Restlessness. Dog food allergy symptoms run the gamut from skin reactions to gastrointestinal troubles to behavioral issues. Below you’ll find a full list, broken down by category, to help you identify whether your pup might be suffering from a food allergy or intolerance. Note, it’s estimated that about a quarter to a third of dogs with a food allergy also has an environmental allergy, which “has similar and at times indistinguishable, symptoms,” says Shmalberg.
Most Common Signs of Food Allergies in Dogs
These are the signs you’ll see most often with a food allergy, says Shmalberg, starting with the single most common symptom: itching.
Rarer Symptoms of Food Allergies in Dogs
These symptoms aren’t as common as those above but may occur in some dogs.
- Nasal discharge
- Secondary urinary tract infections
- Weight loss
Dog Behavioral Issues from Food Allergies
The symptoms below are also rarer, and usually secondary to or linked to discomfort from symptoms listed above.
- Frequent scratching of self on furniture, owner’s legs, etc.
- Frequent shaking ears or scratching ears
- Biting at paws, rear end, and/or tail
- Withdrawal or reduced interest in playtime
- Anorexia, or disinterest in or refusal of food
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What Are Food Allergies
Canines who develop allergies to foods can experience uncomfortable itching of the skin as well as chronic conditions such as ear infections, gas, and wheezing. An allergy is the immune system of the body responding to a perceived threat, in this case, an ingredient in the diet of the dog. In order to reliably determine which allergen is affecting your pet, an elimination diet may be recommended. This can be time-consuming, but is necessary in order to deduce which ingredient is causing the reaction.
A food allergy is an over-reaction of your dog’s immune system to an unwelcome protein that is present in a particular ingredient of their diet.
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What Is Actually In Your Dog’s Food
WAIT! BEFORE YOU GO on about your day, ask yourself: Is the dog food you’re feeding your best friend really the best food out there? At its core, theres an unhealthy meat dependency in pet food. Most of the time, meat in your pet food means: Bad ingredients. Bad practices. And bad health.Learn more about clean protein dog food…
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Genetic Predisposition To Dog Food Allergies
Wondering whether your dog might be predisposed to food allergies or intolerances? Certainly there’s some evidence that if a parent has an allergy, their offspring is more likely to inherit it. So in that way, genes do play a role. But what doesn’t seem to be a factor is a dog’s breed. In fact, science has never confirmed that any one breed is more at risk for food allergies than another. “It can happen in any breed and in any dog,” says Shmalberg.He also notes that some breeders and owners may have the view that deviating from the ancestral diet of certain breeds might predispose to allergies. For example, Huskies are accustomed to fish diets in their natural habitatso could feeding them poultry lead to an allergic reaction?
In short, no. “There is no evidence to support that theory. Most dogs seem pretty adaptable to a range of foods,” says Shmalberg. The age or sex of the dog also appears to have no relevance to food allergies or intolerances. Some vets do report that food allergies have been found in dogs less than 1 year old. So even young puppies can be affected .
Here are the top 10 breeds most frequently Googled along with the term “food allergies” or “dog food allergies”:
Keep in mind, food allergies can happen in any breed, and, of course, some breeds may be searched more frequently just because they’re more popular in general.
Seek Help From A Vet Or Speak To A Pet Nutritionist If It Is Too Much To Handle
The above tips can be useful for any pet owner who experiences a potential dog allergy reaction towards food. . Remember, switching food quickly is counter-productive! Also, if you have a persistent dog scratching issue and feel that it is too overwhelming, consider seeking professional help immediately. Please seek advice from a nutrition-trained vet or a pet nutritionist. We have written a short article on common veterinary or pet nutrition treatment and testing for dog food allergies, such as elimination diets and hypoallergenic dog food. You can read up here to get a quick understanding of what may happen inside a clinic.
About Pawmeal Team
We love our pets and want to share our experiences and stories with you. Together, we took a pet nutrition specialist course to understand our pets’ diets better. We also make fresh, gently cooked food that can let your pet become healthier, happier and live longer. Our cooked food helps keep picky dogs excited and interested longer than other foods.View all posts by Pawmeal Team
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Red Brown Or Bronze Nail Beds
This is easiest to observe in dogs with white nails, such as white bully breeds, Dalmatians, Boxers, Bulldogs and Spaniels.
What It Looks Like: You may notice that the base of your dogs nails are red, even bloody-looking. This is the sign of an inflammatory immune response. Your dogs white nails should be white, with a pink quick. A red, brown, or red-brown nail bed base indicates that something is up. Nails may be sensitive and your dog appears to itch or lick them often.
What It Means: Food allergy.
But First! Rule Out Foot injury , thyroid disorders.
Because this is systemic, youll want to conduct a food-elimination diet to identify the trigger food. Keep the space between your dogs toes clean and by using a cotton ball soaked in witch hazel.
Common Foods Causing An Allergic Or Sensitive Reaction
Often, a reaction to food results from overexposure to an ingredient. If your dog is reacting to an ingredient in their food, theres a good chance its the protein in their diet thats problematic. And its not just meat thats under scrutiny some veggies contain protein, so they’re not automatically safe.
The top offenders are commonly found in dog food:
Beef Fish Chicken Eggs
While dogs can be allergic to plant-sourced ingredients like corn, wheat, soy, and grains, theyre actually less common allergens than many people believe. So, simply switching to a grain-free dog food wont likley cure their symptoms.
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Dog Behavioral Issues From Food Allergies
Food allergies can result in a dog having behavioral issues.
This can be a result of overfeeding or reactions to the chemical in the food.
The behavior can be in any or all of the following forms:
- Mood swings
It is essential to understand that food allergy influences a dogs behavior. A sudden change of behavior should prompt a quick response.
Itchy Skin Red Underbelly And Dull Coat
Together, these signs can indicate an allergy. Your dog itches constantly without relief, possibly causing hair loss in the affected patches.
What It Looks Like: Skin underneath the hair is red or pink, dry, and inflamed. No relief with baths, conditioners, or over-the-counter allergy medications. Excessive, near-constant scratching.
What It Means: Environmental allergies or food allergies.
But First! Rule Out
Shampoo residue on your dogs skin is a leading cause of contact dermatitis, and often resolves by switching to a milder shampoo and rinsing thoroughly. Try this trick: Shampoo your dog, and rinse him until you think you are done. Then, rinse two more times to be safe!
Shampoos containing artificial colors , sodium laurates, phthalates, mineral oil, and fragrances can all cause irritation. Try switching to a species-appropriate, all natural rinse for your dog, such as ones that contain apple cider vinegar or coconut oils.
Pollen Allergy: Your dog may also have a pollen allergy: try wiping him down with a cool, damp cloth every time he comes inside to eliminate exposure to pollen.
Fleas: Make sure your dog does not have fleas, as flea allergy dermatitis will also cause irritated skin.
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How To Help Prevent An Allergic Reaction
Unfortunately, theres no cure for allergies. You cant prevent your dog from having allergies.
However, there are things you can do to help keep their symptoms and discomfort under control.
First, you have to identify the underlying cause, be it seasonal, food, flea, etc. From there you can help your dog avoid those allergens.
Carvalho explained that sometimes a prescription diet could be necessary along with using flea/ectoparasite control all year round. Pet owners should also keep an eye out for and treat any itches so that they dont lead to inflamed and infected skin and ears.
Because good health for your canine companion is always in season .
Diagnosis Of Food Allergies In Dogs
The symptoms that your dog will be showing due to an allergic reaction will prompt your veterinarian to collect skin scrapings from any affected areas for cutaneous cytology. Cutaneous cytology is the microscopic evaluation of the skin cells to look for problems like mites, yeast infections, or signs of disease. When these are not found on the dermal cells, then a food allergy may be suspected. In order to confirm the allergy, an elimination diet is usually implemented. An elimination diet usually involves changing the dog’s food to either a reduced ingredient commercial food or a diet of bland human food, such as a boiled protein and a simple carbohydrate like rice.
- Cow hooves
- Flavored medications or supplements
- Flavored plastic toys
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Recovery Of Food Allergies In Dogs
Allergies to foods are not curable, but symptoms usually cease if the allergen is removed from the animals diet. Any exposure to the allergen can cause a relapse, so care must be taken in the type of treats and flavorings you use for your dog. Unfortunately, if your canine has had an allergic response to one type of food they are more likely to develop an allergy to the ingredients in the replacement diet over time as well.The approach to combat this situation varies within the veterinary profession, with some doctors advocating that your pet remain on a single source of food, while others maintain that a steady rotation of three of four novel protein foods is optimal.
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Food Allergies Average Cost
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