It’s not unusual for your dog to have a certain food allergy. However, it is a lot easier to track them in people, as they can describe the symptom to the last detail, but if you’re a parent to a four-legged friend, this is where it can get a bit troublesome.
To us, dog and animal people, the second situation is much more painful as we cannot know for certain if something’s happening in our dog’s body (unless you have a super breed that speaks, which would be quite great!). So, it can happen that the body of your dog mistakenly believe a certain type of food is bad for them, so the immune system can respond with antibodies which can cause serious symptoms.
Let’s take a look at the symptoms and the most common food allergies in dogs:
The Most Common Symptoms
If your dog ever experiences something of the following, make sure to get them checked by a vet as it is very probable they have a certain food allergy:
- Poor coat quality
- Chronic ear inflammation
- Obsessive licking
- Chronic gas
- Chronic diarrhea
1. Dairy products
Just as people, some dogs can be lactose intolerant and cannot eat anything that’s dairy. Even though this is more of an intolerance than an allergy, it can be manifested with gas, diarrhoea and vomiting. As far as dairy products are concerned, there is one tricky thing – a dog can be actually allergic to them and it is very important for you to distinguish allergy from the intolerance.
If you happen to notice any itchiness, redness or related symptoms, make sure to take the dog to the vet. Lactose intolerance is always followed by digestion problems such as diarrhoea or vomiting.
Since eggs are very rich in protein, it can happen that your dog becomes allergic to the amount of protein in them, more specifically in the egg yolk. Luckily, avoiding eggs is not a difficult task; you just have to make sure to check the labels on the dog food to make sure there’s no danger for your furry friend.
One of the most prominent symptoms of an egg allergy in your dog is the appearance of bald patches, but the allergy can manifest in other ways, as well.
Since proteins are common allergens in dogs (as in the former situation), beef can also happen to be a bit problematic for your dog. If you’re feeding single food to your dog for a long time, they can develop a certain intolerance or allergy to that food. Beef allergies are, for this reason, very common, as most of the dog foods contain beef.
In order to avoid this, make sure to feed your dog different kinds of meat – the best option would be to feed your dog beef, pork and chicken and to rotate the meats as much as you can.
As already mentioned, constant feeding of a certain food can lead to intolerance and allergies, and since, just like beef, many dog foods contain grains, it can easily happen that your dog becomes allergic to them. If you notice itchy and dry skin or hair loss, make sure to get your dog checked for a grain allergy.
Since it can be quite tricky to find completely grain-free dog food in the stores, you might have to prepare the food yourself. Fortunately, there are certain brands that will do the trick, such as the grain-free Ivory Coat dog food. Strict control is always the best treatment and even though this can be a long process, once you discover the allergen it will be easier for you to treat it properly.
5. Chicken and lamb
Even though it’s just plain chicken, the same rules here apply as for beef. Even though dog foods are most commonly made out of beef or chicken, lamb is somehow regarded as a “safe haven” for all those dogs with meat allergies.
However, just as with other meats, your dog can also be (or become) allergic to lamb as well. The rotation of meats in your dog’s diet is the best precaution for this.
Even though feeding soy to dogs is very common, many would argue that this is not the best choice. Soy can cause many health problems that are bigger than allergies, including reproductive and growth problems, and liver and thyroid diseases.
Since soy is among the top 3 genetically modified crops grown, it would be for the best to avoid feeding soy to your friend.
Dogs are really the treasures of this world, and probably the kindest beings walking the earth. We should all (especially if we are the owners) make it our imperative to take the best care of them that we can.
Making sure our dog is not allergic to a specific food is just the start. We don’t want them suffering, do we?