Veteriner in Charlottesville reveals common food allergens for dogs and their symptoms

Food allergies are one of the most common allergies that dogs suffer from. Some breeds of dogs such as Boxer, Springer Spaniel, Dalmatian, German Shepherd, Miniature Schnauzer, Retriever Cocker Spaniel, Coolie, and Lhasa Apso have a higher susceptibility to food allergies. A food allergy is caused when the dog’s immune system overreacts to a perfectly healthy substance and produces antibodies against it.

Usually, dogs’ immune system usually reacts to complex carbohydrates or proteins and produces antibodies against them. If your dog is allergic to certain foods, it can affect its health and quality of life. Therefore, being a dog owner it is important to learn about the potential food allergens and their common symptoms.

Most Common Food Allergens for Dogs

1) Beef

  • Beef is largely composed of protein or amino acids, fatty acids, and some vitamins. Beef is a healthy and staple food for dogs which is why it is featured in many dog foods. However, consistent feeding of beef can lead to the development of a beef allergy. The protein in the beef does not agree with most dogs. The best way to avoid an allergic reaction is to feed your dog a varied and balanced diet.

For e.g. beef, chicken, and lamb can be fed alternatively each week. But don’t feed the same meat each week.

2) Dairy

  • Some dogs can be allergic to the lactose in the milk. A dairy allergy manifests itself in the form of itchy skin and rashes. Some dogs may be allergic to lactose, while others can be lactose intolerant. The symptoms of lactose intolerance manifest through gastrointestinal problems such as gas, vomiting, or diarrhea. Having a lactose allergy is more serious than lactose intolerance. Hence if your dog develops itchy skin or rashes then, quit feeding them dairy products.

3) Wheat

  • Carbohydrate is the major component of wheat. Even though it is a healthy source of energy, some dogs might be allergic to wheat and other grains. If your dog is allergic to wheat, ask your vet to recommend some alternative sources of healthy carbohydrates for your dog.

4) Eggs

  • Protein in the egg yolks is the major culprit for a dog allergy. Raw eggs are not the most favorite food for dogs but eggs can be present in multiple store-bought dog foods. Hence, you may unknowingly feed them eggs which can cause an allergic reaction. To avoid such an incident, read the labels on each food item and avoid picking the ones that may feature eggs as a component.

5) Chicken and Lamb

  • food allergens for dogsChicken and lamb are full of nutritional proteins. However, in some cases, the dog’s immune system may conceive the protein as a dangerous substance and trigger an allergic reaction. Common symptoms of protein allergy are the appearance of rashes, hot spots, changes in skin color, and itchiness.

Lamb is considered a much safer and more nutritious source of protein. It has been considered a good alternative food for dogs that are allergic to more traditional foods. However, be vary. Lamb can also instigate an allergic reaction. Feed lamb in small portions and monitor your dog for any allergic reactions.

6) Soy

  • Soy is an edible bean with high protein content. It usually does not agree with dogs and can cause various health problems such as liver disease and a dysfunctional reproductive system, apart from causing allergic reactions.

To learn more about your dog’s nutritional requirements, contact the experienced vets at Autumn Trails and Veterinary Center. We provide services in Charlottesville, VA, and nearby areas. Call us at 434 971 9800.