Dogs can have allergies. Sometimes, these allergies are caused by the food they eat while other times it could be due to allergens in plants, animal dander, insects and pollen. In most cases, the allergies have similar symptoms such as scratching, itching, and rashes which might make it difficult to know whether they are caused by food or other allergens.
The best option is to visit the vet who can conduct tests and find out the cause of the allergies and then advice you appropriately. In case your dog has food allergies, then you may be required to give your dog hypoallergenic food.
Here is how hypoallergenic dog food helps your pup with allergies.
1. Helps you to figure out which food is causing the allergies
Food allergies in dogs are usually caused by proteins from plants or animals such as beef, chicken, rabbit, pork, dairy products, soy, and wheat. Your pups may have eaten the food for a while without developing reactions, and then all of a sudden the allergic reactions appear. Here is the problem. If you want to know which food is causing the allergies, you will need to conduct experiments with different diets. The task can be a tedious one and it may also take long before you figure out the food causing the allergies to your dog.
To make it easier, you can start giving your dog hypoallergenic food and you will notice a change as the allergy symptoms start to diminish. It comes in three categories; limited ingredient in which many ingredients of dog food are removed; novel ingredient which has new ingredients that may never have given your pup before and veterinary or prescription diet which has ingredients prescribed by a vet.
The recommended hypoallergenic meals that will help to figure out the allergens are limited ingredient and novel ingredient foods. The prescription diet is recommended if your puppy extremely serious allergies.
2. Reduces the Discomfort
If your puppy has food allergies, it will exhibit symptoms such as itching, rashes, inflamed skin, diarrhea, and nausea. These will surely give it an uncomfortable time and a lot of suffering. Nobody wants to see their pet go through that kind of suffering.
However, when you give your pup hypoallergenic dog food, the symptoms will reduce. For instance, if you use novel ingredient diet, you are now feeding it with food it may not have eaten before such as ostrich and kangaroo meat, so it may not be allergic to it. If you feed it using limited ingredient food then most of the allergy-causing ingredients are eliminated from the diet and your puppy will not have allergic reactions to the food.
3. Provides the required nutrients
Hypoallergenic dog food consists of ingredients that a puppy or a dog needs while eliminating those that are harmful. Just like humans, dogs should be fed with foods that contain important nutrients that will ensure their growth.
For instance, a limited ingredient diet can contain only one type of protein that will not cause allergic reactions to your puppy and easily digestible carbohydrates. It will have no by-products of meat, gluten free, no additives, no food preservatives, no flavors, and no artificial colors. Therefore, your puppy will only be getting the essential nutrients that are safe and natural without getting allergic reactions.