Dog Allergies

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dog allergiesIt is believed that over 25% of all allergies seen in dogs are caused by the food they consume. After flea bite allergies, food allergies are the second most common cause. Many people are lead to think that the introduction of a “natural” or “organic” will prevent potential food allergies in their dogs. While it may be a healthier alternative to other choices, it may still lead to allergic reactions.

Food allergies can affect animals of both genders male and female, whether they have been castrated and neutered or not makes no difference. There is no specific age for an allergy to appear in a dog. They can show up as early as three months and up to twelve years. Studies have shown that most dog allergies occur when they are two to six years old.

There is a difference between food intolerance and a food related allergy. The latter is a true allergy and can manifest itself with symptoms of skin problems and itching and are associated with canine and feline allergies. Severe food allergies can result in vomiting or diarrhea animals and loss of weight.

Various studies have acknowledged that some ingredients found in store bought food are more likely to trigger an allergy in dogs than others. The most common offenders to dogs are dairy products, beef, wheat, eggs, chicken, soybeans and corn; these are common ingredients in dog foods and are proven to be the most problematic. Most pet food ingredients contain grains such as wheat and corn which cannot be fully digested by most dogs. The undigested food particles may accumulate in the dogs digestive tract setting them up for allergies at a later time.

It can sometimes be difficult to detect if your dog has a food allergy and not a environmental exposure allergy which may cause related symptoms. The most common sign is itching of the skin, which may include recurrent ear infections, hair loss, excessive scratching, hot spots and skin infections. These can be treated with antibiotics but can often recur after treatment has ended. Dogs with food allergies often have increased bowel movements, studies have shown a non-allergic dog has 1.5 stools per day compared to a dog with food allergies can go three or more times a day.

Seek out higher-end dog products from suppliers who advertise a holistic approach to dog health. While holistic dog food is more expensive, they may save you money later in reduced vet bills and will probably prolong the life of your best friend . . . your dog!

About the author: David Fox is a long-term dog enthusiast and personally owns 6 dogs at his home in California. He converted his dogs to a more holistic diet a few years ago and believes his dogs are healthier and happier as a result.

Related Posts: Pet Allergy, Pet Allergies and Dander Allergy.

Atopy in Dogs, Environmental Allergies

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