In a one word answer…yes. Yes your dogs diet can cause allergies. The thing to keep
in mind though is that dogs do not have the same allergy symptoms as we do. They do
not get stuffy noses, bad coughs or water eyes. Dogs react to allergies with skin
problems such as itching, chewing, and their coat taking on a poor quality. Some dogs
even suffer from chronic ear infections as a result of allergies.
While allergies can be caused by many things, we are going to discuss the food allergies
that some dogs seem prone to. Food allergies do not come to surface as fast as they would
with us. In fact you could be feeing your dog the same dog food for years and see that
just recently they started having allergies symptoms. Once the symptom comes to
surface though, that is it. Food allergies usually show themselves with itchy skin, anal
itching, ear inflammation, and rubbing their face on the carpet. I have never personally
owned a dog with allergies but have seen dogs with allergies that spend a good twenty
minutes scratching the skin off of them when their allergies act up. They were so bad,
they actually had bald patches on their coat from how fast and furious they scratched.
Keep in mind that dogs are not allergic to brands of dog food, but rather the ingredients
that are in your dogs food. The most common food allergies are beef, pork, chicken,
milk, soy and corn along with a few others. If you buys a brand of dog food with one of
these ingredients, and find your dog is allergic, and then you buy another brand with the
same ingredients you are going to find your dog is still allergic. Here is yet another
reason why it is so important to read the labels of your dog food!
The first step to figuring out if it is your dog’s food that is causing your dog to suffer,
take away your dogs food and feed them only a diet that consists of things that your dog
has never eaten before. This should be protein and starch. You can try lamb or rabbit
mixed with rice. Do not give them anything else during this trial period. Do not give
them any treats, bones, table scraps or even chew toys. Keep them on this diet for a
few days. Once the symptoms start to improve, go back to the original food for a few
days and make a note of what you were given your dog. You know now they are not
allergic to it. If they symptoms return, your dog is allergic to something in the food.
The next thing to do is to return to the test diet and add one new ingredient a week to rule
out allergies. For example try chicken one week and if the symptoms get better, you
know it is not chicken. The next week try beef and if the symptoms return then it is safe
to say your dog is allergic to beef. Try this though with all ingredients because your dog
could be allergic to a number of ingredients in their food.
Once you find out the culprit or culprits, you can look for food that does not contain the
ingredients you know your dog is allergic too. One of the best choices with brand dog
foods is food that is made with lamb and rice. Both lamb and rice are consider
hypoallergenic as long as it does not consider wheat, or corn. Corn is not digestible to
If you are feeding your dog the Raw Dog Diet, you would still follow the same steps to
find out what they are allergic to and then just cut out the offending ingredients from their
diet. I know this sounds like a lot and time consuming. It can take a while to discover to
cause of your dogs allergies. But in the end it is worth it for your dog and you will end a
lot of their distress.
You can always take your dog to the vet for an allergy diagnoses. They will perform a
series of physical examinations and tests to determine what your dog is allergic to. While
this is a quicker way to get to the bottom of the mystery, it can also be a costly one plus
studies have shown that blood tests do not always show food allergies. The food trial diet
is the best way.
Another thing to keep in mind is that no matter what the cost of your dog food, your dog
could still develop allergies to it. Granted there are more reports of the cheaper brand
food causing more allergies because of the fillers that might be included in those brands,
but your dog has just as much of a chance of being allergic to the premium dog food as it
does with the cheaper brand food. Dogs also do not grow out of allergies.
If you notice your dog suddenly itching a lot, or chewing at their skin first check for fleas
and if you find none, they more than likely have food allergies and you should begin the
food test diet right away.