Allergy in dogs ranges from
mild to fatal. Here are some ideas on how to deal with them and how to
avoid common dog food and other allergies.
Dogs may suffer from various kinds of allergies. The food allergies are
difficult to determine, as dogs are usually allergic to only one
ingredient and not to the whole diet. So, isolating that particular
ingredient becomes a long puzzle. Traditionally, it is said that a diet
that a dog never eaten before, should be given to him as they will not
cause the allergic reaction. People used to give lamb and rice to dog at
first but since they are now part of most of the other dog foods, one
can try rich-protein diet such as ostrich meat, alligator meat, duck,
venison and rabbit along with rich-carbohydrate diet such as potato,
peas and rice. Food ingredients such as beef, chicken, milk and wheat
can be added back into the diet one at a time to see the reaction of the
dog. If food allergies reoccur then, the ingredient added last is taken
to be the culprit.
To avoid these allergies, try the following:
- Hyposensitization - Injecting minute amounts of allergen
to the dog so that a tolerance to the substance develops. It should
be tried on young dogs only, as they respond better to it.
- Rinse the ears of your pooch with white vinegar mixed 1:1 with
water, once or twice a week, to reduce infections.
- In case of inflammation in ear, use Synotic (Rx) or another
corticosteroidotic preparation to control secondary infections. Oral
corticosteroids have more systemic side effects.
- Antihistamines help to reduce ear infections too.
The best allergy test is
intradermal skin testing, which can be done by a veterinary
dermatologist or an experienced general practitioner too. It has an
accuracy rate of about 70 to 80%. Another testing method that can be
used for inhalant allergies is blood testing, which an accuracy rate of
about 60 to 70%.