Ever wondered why is your dog acting strange? It seems allergic. It seems disturbed. Does not feel hungry. It is mostly scratching and very aloof. Also throws up and has a bad stomach too? You then decide to take your dog to a vet who writes off all major diseases and instead, tells you that your dog is allergic to food and has a food reaction.
How to tell if your dog is allergic to food?
Like any normal human being, your dog may have food allergies, may be intolerant to certain types of foods or simply be uncomfortable due to environmental factors.
A food allergy is basically genetic, combined with a reaction to food. It can be caused by many reasons and one of them is processed or the dog food, that can totally compromise a dog’s immune system.
What is causing Food Allergies?
The main cause of an allergy is basically your dog’s genes. Allergies take time to develop. When these allergies are paired up with externals factors, they explain your dog’s allergies to food.
One reason may be prolonged consumption of processed food that helps these allergies eventually mature. According to various researches, the main step is to carefully observe some allergens. Everything that your dog eats; beef, egg, vegetables or dairy (also known as the allergens) can have a negative impact on your dog’s health.
You have to keep a check on your dog’s diet if you want to save it from the possibilities of a food allergy.
The ‘Hows’ of Figuring out Food Allergies in Dogs
A food allergy has the least number of occurrences among other allergies, easily gets mixed up with further air-borne allergies and so, takes time to diagnose. According to most veterinarians, food allergies are either gastrointestinal or skin related.
As a dog owner, you should know the root causes and be able to gauge the following symptoms to battle it all out.
Itchiness and Scratching – 1st sign to tell your dog is allergic to food
When a dog suffers through regular itchiness, rashes or bald patches, know that something is terribly wrong. Itchiness is a very common symptom of a food allergy amongst dogs. Other common symptoms are:
- licking their paws
- having itchy anal or
- scratching their whole body.
If these symptoms are left unchecked, they can seriously turn lethal.
One of the ‘hows of detecting an allergy’ is a frequent break out of ear infections. The constant head shaking or scratching are signs of a food allergy. An untreated ear can eventually make your dog turn deaf.
Vomiting/ Abdominal Pain
Abdominal pain that leads to vomiting is one of the signs of food intolerance among dogs or in some cases, a reaction to food allergy. If it frequently vomits then you need to check your dog’s food intake. Your dog’s body cannot process a lot of things just like us. You must always evaluate their food ingredients to make their life much better.
Diarrhea is common in a food reaction
Diarrhea is a common disorder caused by food intolerance. An upset stomach or soft stools are a strong symptom of a food reaction. Like us, your dog’s food intake needs to be monitored. It is common sense to stop giving the food that your dog usually takes to rule out any of these troubles.
Red Eyes/ Eye Discharge
One of the other symptoms is when your dog’s eyes turn red, has water oozing out along with a problem of them keeping their eyes open. The mucus or the discharge coming out of their eyes, is a source of persistent discomfort and indicates a possible attack on its basic allergic genes.
No seasonal changes
If the above symptoms are consistent despite seasonal changes, it certainly is a food allergy and not connected to the environment.
Slight to no medicinal impact
A food allergy is linked to your dog’s diet. The number of medicines that your dog takes will have no weightage till you make amendments in your dog’s diet. The allergy may stop for a short period of time but will re trigger as soon as the dog eats the same food again. To avoid that, you must sit with your dog’s vet and brainstorm on the ingredients that need immediate elimination.
Drowsiness or Lack of Interest
Although extremely rare but consistent drowsiness and lack of interest may be termed as one of the outcomes of the symptoms of a food allergy. For a happy dog with a better life quality, concentrate on the triggers that come with food allergies.
There are no hard and fast rules for when the allergies start developing. Food allergies may occur in dogs as young as a 1-year-old puppy or as old as an eight-year-old dog. For a dog to attain a healthy life; focus on its diet, observe its behavior, provide it with relief and eliminate all those allergens that may trigger the allergic reaction.