Food allergies are quite common in dogs, and they could lead to serious repercussions for the animal. Food allergies are perhaps the most common, and usually occur when your dog develops a heightened sensitivity to a specific ingredient found in their food. It’s important for you to first figure out what’s causing the allergy before you think about removing it from their diet.
Apart from food allergies, you should know that dogs are also susceptible to allergies in their environment. Some dogs are susceptible to irritants found in the environment, and it’s important that you figure out the symptoms of an allergy. Meanwhile,finding the best food for dogs with allergies is important.
Symptoms of an Allergy
When your dog is under a year old, it’s going to be difficult for you to figure out the signs. Usually, the allergy signs manifest once the dog reaches its first birthday. However, you should know that symptoms tend to develop in dogs of different ages, and it’s important that you pay attention to the problem.
For starters, the most common symptoms of an allergy include gassiness or itching. If your dog develops reddening skin, it’s probably due to an allergy. Diarrhea and vomiting are also signs of a serious infection and need to be treated properly. You need to figure out what’s causing the problem and then work on it.
Dogs that usually suffer from food insensitivity are usually allergic to plant-based ingredients or proteins. The main cases are the proteins and other nutrients found in the dog’s food. For instance, many dogs have an allergy to corn, dairy, beef, and wheat.
It may seem a bit weird, but you should know that the signs of food allergies do not appear right away. Instead, you will notice your dog suddenly showing a response, or an allergic reaction to the problem. It may confuse you as well, because the dog’s reaction will be to a food that it has been eating for quite a while.
Diagnosing the Problem
You might want to take your dog to a vet to determine the cause of the problem. Allergy testing is an essential part of eliminating the problem, but if you don’t go for that, you might have to think about putting your dog on an elimination diet. Elimination diets are generally quite simple, and might be recommended by your vet.
If your vet recommends an elimination diet, they are going to recommend a special kind of hypoallergenic food that you need to feed your dog for around two to three months. While giving your dog the hypoallergenic food, you will have to simultaneously eliminate all other foods from the dog’s diet.
If there are any other ingredients found in the dog’s food that are causing the allergy, eliminating these foods will help you take care of the situation. It’s also critically essential for you to understand that you have to give your dog only hypoallergenic food; this means you can’t give any kind of treats to your dog as well.
Ten weeks are more than enough to ensure that the dog’s body adjusts conveniently to the new prescription food. After a while, you will have to take your dog to the vet who will evaluate its health and give you an idea about what’s wrong. If there is an allergy symptom that clears up due to the problem, the vet may recommend that you give the same food to your dog again.
Best Foods to Give
Prescription dog food is generally a wise idea. However, you can’t just buy this off the counter. It’s important for you to make sure that you take the dog to a vet to get an appropriate prescription for the dry food that you can feed your dog. Obviously, this is a more expensive option, mainly because it contains specialized proteins.
Making sure that you work with your dog closely to give it prescription food is very important. This is necessary because it will help you ensure that your dog remains free of any kind of allergic symptoms. Some of the most common dog foods that are given based on prescriptions include:
Limited Ingredient Foods
Apart from this, there are certain foods with limited ingredients as well. These products limit the amount of proteins available, and also limit the amount of carbohydrates, bringing them down to just one. When you are looking for limited ingredient foods, it’s recommended that you check for the seal of approval first.
It should be approved by the Association of American Feed Control first. This should also have a claim that says the dog food is “complete and balanced.” There are some popular dog foods that contain limited ingredients, such as:
Limited ingredient dog foods are generally readily available and you can easily find them at your local store. It’s recommended that you visit your vet first and figure out the best foods that are suitable for your dog.
Balancing Your Dog’s Diet
It’s very important for you to pay attention to what you feed your dog. Giving the animal less expensive or subpar foods is a terrible idea, and will harm the animal in the long run. The dog is going to suffer from problems such as hip dysplasia if they are not given a proper and healthy diet. You need to make sure that you sit down with a vet to determine how much to feed your dog, and what kind of foods you should give.
Once you have a better understanding, you can then buy several brands and see which one works best for your dog. It’s highly important that you pay attention to the dog’s overall health and response to different foods. If your dog doesn’t like something, it might be a wise idea to see why it’s reacting this way. Similarly, gauge your dog’s response to different food items. Find out whether any kind of food leads to an allergic reaction or not.
You can mix and match different foods and then figure out which one is the best option. These are just a few things that you should know about giving your dog a proper and healthy diet.