Contrary to the belief, food allergies are not so common in dogs. Your dog can be allergic to food if it’s scratching its body or tail constantly, shaking its head restlessly, and shows signs of ear infections and diarrhea. However, these signs can be due to other causes that may have nothing to do with food. Read on to know what causes food allergies in dogs.
A food allergy in dogs most commonly triggers by specific types of proteins. These proteins are predominantly available in dairy products like soya, eggs, chicken, lamb, and beef. Every time you feed your dog any of these foods, the antibodies in them react adversely with the antigens called Dog Erythrocyte Antigen. This reaction leads to dogs showing symptoms that need immediate attention.
Dogs are not born to allergic to specific proteins; they develop an allergy when the same food is fed repeatedly. Your dog cannot break down the same protein, and the immune system mistakes it to be harmful.
Though gluten comes under proteins, they’re a group or a family of seed storage proteins found in various grains, including wheat, corn, oats, rye, and barley. While these are powerful sources of carbohydrates, allergies developed are not as common as in the case of meat and dairy. However, some dogs can develop an allergic reaction to wheat or any food product that contains gluten.
When your dog is allergic to gluten, it’s probably a delayed reaction. Your dog cannot absorb the nutrients that are vital for optimum health. It leads to malnourishment even though you’re feeding him good quality food.
At times dogs are genetically predisposed to allergies. The type of food doesn’t matter, but contents in the food cause allergies. Most dogs are also allergic to more than one type of food at a time.
4. Environmental Factors
The environment plays a significant role in determining the extent of an allergic reaction to a specific type of food for a particular dog. All dogs don’t show allergic reactions to the same type of food, and it greatly varies depending on their environment. The immune system development happening in the first few weeks of their life determines how their system reacts to a particular trait.
If your dog is treated with antibiotics while it was a puppy, it can lead to potential health ailments later in life. This is due to the changes antibiotics makes in the gut, the largest immune organ in the body.
Now that you know what causes food allergies in dogs ensure that you avoid giving them that food and take them to the vet as soon as possible.