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Turn your head for a second, and they'll be up on the table pawing at your meat and three veg or digging through the rubbish looking for some tasty treats. And while eating can be most dogs' favourite activity, for some dogs, it can unfortunately be the cause of great pain and discomfort in the form of allergies.
Allergies and hypersensitivities occur in dogs around the world. And while food allergies aren't as common in dogs as skin allergies, it's still just as important to have a handle on any issues your pet might have with certain foods.
Here's a quick guide to food allergies in dogs – including what they are and how to spot them.
Perhaps the most common food allergy found in dogs is towards animal proteins, such as beef, chicken, dairy and less commonly fish, pork and eggs. Allergies to plant proteins are far less common and can include wheat, soy, rice and corn.
A dog’s skin and coat is an important part of their well-being. These plant-based Omega-6 Drops contain a good balance of essential fatty acids that play a vital role in supporting the skin barrier. A healthy skin barrier can lead to less itching, dryness and secondary infections. Most dogs get enough omega-6 fatty acids from their diet. Some dogs with dry, flaky, itchy skin may benefit from an omega-6 supplement. Your vet can advise whether this is suitable for your dog.
If you think your dog has developed a food allergy, the first person to contact is your vet. They'll help you manage your pet’s symptoms and figure out what is causing the reaction. They will rule out other more common causes of allergies, such as atopic dermatitis. Unfortunately, food allergies can be pretty tricky to pick up on. If your dog is showing signs of skin problems, your GP vet may refer you to a veterinary dermatologist to perform further diagnostic tests.
The most common method for diagnosing a food allergy in dogs is by using an elimination dietary trial - this should be performed under the strict guidance of your vet. This involves feeding your dog a specific prescription diet for at least 6 weeks until their symptoms resolve. Your vet will then recommend individual allergen challenges to try and determine which food protein your dog is reacting to.
Unfortunately, there's no cure for food allergies in dogs. But knowledge is power. The answer to ending your dog's problems is to avoid whatever is causing the reaction.