Thursday, October 22, 2015

Food allergies in dogs

Allergies are fairly common both amongst humans and dogs, and just like a human, a dog can develop an allergy at any age. The most common dog allergy is against flea bites, and the second most common is inhaling allergens such as pollen or molds. Dog food allergies come in on a close third place.
In order to develop a food allergy, a dog must be exposed to the same food ingredient for a couple of years or more. Most dogs are between two and six years old when food allergies are first noticed.
What causes food allergy?
An allergy is caused by the immune system responding to something it believes is foreign. It is a defense mechanism that would normally protect the body, but instead causes an over-reaction to harmless substances met in everyday life.
When it comes to dogs and food the immune system most often reacts to a protein, and the most common triggers are beef, milk and other dairy products, chicken, eggs, soy, corn, and wheat.
What are the symptoms of food allergies?
Symptoms of food allergy include excessive scratching and itchy skin. A dog with a food allergy can scratch until they lose all hair in an area, and the skin is often red and irritated. This is particularly common on the ears, groin, and belly. Some dogs with food allergies lick or chew on their paws, get repeated ear infections, and/or rashes. Stomach problems are also often connected to food allergies.
How do you treat a food allergy?
To treat a food allergy, the dog needs to stay away from eating the problematic ingredient. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to find the problematic ingredient. The idea is to eliminate potential causes of the problem through feeding the dog something completely different from what he or she has eaten in the past. The new food – and nothing but the new food – has to be fed for two to three months to give enough time for the method to work. This means no treats or tastes of human foods, which can be frustrating for both dog and human.
Once the dog is symptom free, one ingredient can be added back at a time to see if the immune system reacts.


  1. My mom has had bad allergies her whole life, but not food allergies. Thankfully none of us pets have any allergy problems. We feel bad for pets who suffer from them.

    1. Thank you for coming over, Emma. Allergies in pets are hard enough for people - and we can talk about how we're feeling and make choices to avoid things. Must be rough on a cat or a dog. :/

  2. Unfortunately there are many not only people but pets who have an allergy and that's why they cannot taste many products. In general we can have an allergy of everything, I've read about it in that's why I think that it's very useful information and everyone should know it!

  3. Skin allergies are so common in dogs, even those that stay in the house and less outside. My dogs have skin allergies before and she kept on scratching and licking her paws (she's a poodle). With the prodding of my vet, we eliminated various food and bathing products to see where she is allergic to. It turned out that she is allergic to chicken and pollen! So, I eliminated chicken from her diet and makes sure she has some kind of protection when we go out to play. While surfing the web, I stumbled on this site that tells a lot of info on dog skin allergies. Here's the link

  4. Be aware of the food allergies and treatment for that..Dog bite