Our family dog Annie has been exhibiting the following signs of dog allergies:
- facial itching
- foot chewing
- belly itching
Rather than this being a minor annoyance for Annie or us as owners, this was starting to effect her overall health.
The more she licked, the more hair she ate, the more she coughed. The more she chewed, the redder she got, sometimes to the point of bleeding.
Suspect one to this dog allergy dilemma was her diet, as dog allergies brought on by food are a prime cause to the distress our dog was in.
In fact dog allergies are one of the itchiest conditions known to dogs.
Processed food proteins, fillers and assorted colorings are all further processed inside their bodies. The immune systems may recognize some of these now changed or combined proteins as the foreign invader that needs to be attacked by the immune system. While other evidence of inflammation may appear in area such as the GI tract or other organ, it is the skin that suffers the most.
Many people assume that a change of diet is what will bring on an allergic reaction. The fact is that food allergies take time to develop. In fact you may have been feeding the very food that is causing the allergies for years without any sign of trouble.
In order to get to the bottom of the food allergy mystery you will need to set about a hypoallergenic diet that can be fed to your dog over a set period of time. This will determine whether or not it is, in fact, a food allergy or another cause.
If your pet recovers after the hypoallergenic diet is fed then a 2 weeks resumption of the original diet should be fed to validate the cause as the offending food. If in 2 weeks time the original food causes a new bout of itching and scratching then food allergy diagnosis might be assumed as a cause.