Not only do humans suffer from food allergies, dogs can experience allergies to food too. Sometimes, this is caused by just one ingredient in the food eaten. However, this one item can cause considerable misery in your dog.
Allergies can occur even in puppies. If you notice your puppy behaving rather strangely after feeding, this could be the problem.
Symptoms of food allergies in dogs
Dry and itchy skin are common signs of food allergies in puppies. Your puppy may start to scratch so much that raw spots will begin to appear on his skin.
If you notice your puppy scratching too much, it is better to check his skin condition. You may need to spread his hair backward in order to see his skin if your puppy has a thick coat of fur.
Besides developing itchy skin and rashes, adult dogs are also prone to getting ear infections from food allergies too.
You may notice a swelling in the ear accompanied by an odor coming from it. A discharge coming from one or both ears may occur if the problem persists or is severe enough.
Senior dogs may throw up and experience loose stools or diarrhea when they develop allergies to the food they have eaten.
All dogs can display a mixture of the common symptoms when they are allergic to food. Most dog foods for puppies or adult dogs contain allergy triggering items such as fillers or dyes.
Identifying which food item causes allergies in your dog
An elimination diet is a great way to determine whether your dog is allergic to a certain food that he has been eating. Pay attention to the list of ingredients of the food you have been feeding him.
If you suspect a certain item is the cause of the allergy, then buy other foods that do not have that item as an ingredient.
For example, if you have been feeding him food that contains dairy, then change his diet to one that is diary free. If his allergy clear up after changing to the new diet, then you have found the cause of the allergy.
You need to do the elimination diet with each ingredient in the food you have been feeding him originally. Do this until you can identify the cause of his reaction.
You need to feed your dog the food without the suspected allergen for at least five to seven days before coming to a conclusion.
Another option is to change the brand of dog food you are buying. And, if you are using regular dog food, you may also consider changing to organic dog food. Organic food does not contain the common allergy foods that is found in regular dog food, such as fillers.
If changing to organic dog food does not help, then consider cooking whole meats for him. If this still does not help, then you will need to take your dog to the vet to test for allergies.