By: Chyrle Bonk, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
You may have noticed the last time you went to buy pet food there seems to be an explosion of foods that are considered “good for dog skin allergies” or “cat food allergies.” How prevalent are pet skin and food allergies?
The Struggle is Real
The increase in these types of pet foods comes on the heels of more and more allergies and sensitivities being diagnosed in our pets. “Helicopter” pet parenting is common. It’s important not to overreact to everything but if your pet is clearly struggling, there are some fairly simple steps which can improve your pet’s daily struggles.
The increased diagnosis rate is due to a better understanding of the allergic process, as well as the fact that common dry pet foods have used the same main ingredients for decades now and pets are developing issues over time. There’s no doubt that food allergies and sensitivities are no fun to deal with. They can lead to severe itching, ear infections, as well as vomiting, or diarrhea, and for some unlucky animals (and rugs), all of the above.
Testing and Other Options
Unfortunately, allergy tests may not identify exactly what your pet is allergic to. Once your vet has ruled out other conditions that could cause your dog’s symptoms, the most definitive diagnosis for food allergies or sensitivities is an elimination diet. This means feeding your pet a diet made from simple, limited ingredients with one protein and one carbohydrate source. You can then start to pinpoint the exact culprits of the allergen by adding in foods until your pet experiences a problem. This process will involve some trial and error, so be patient with your pet and yourself.
Since cooking for your pet is often beyond the scope of most busy lives, the best cat or dog food for allergies is a true limited ingredient diet. The fewer ingredients there are, the less likely the food will cause a reaction or problem. Since most dog and cat food allergies are connected to the protein source in their pet food, novel protein diets, like Koha Limited Ingredient Dog and Cat Foods, help to provide complete and balanced nutrition without unnecessary fillers or carbohydrates. Less fillers and carbs will offer your pet less potential allergy triggers. This is why KOHA is one of the best dog food choices for dogs with allergies.
Food allergies can be a real drag for our dog and cat and families. Fortunately, the pet food market has come to our aid and is producing many foods that are allergy friendly. Always consult with your veterinarian before making any diet changes to help with food allergies or sensitivities.
Aug 5th 2019