Some of your overly zealous dog owning friends might be raving to you about the benefits of dog allergy food, about how there’s dog’s health and vitality has improved immensely since they switched their dog to a diet of hypoallergenic foods. Is it really that beneficial for dogs to eat allergy dog food? Or is it just a marketing ploy to get you to pay for more expensive dog food?
What is Different About Dog Allergy Food?
The first thing to consider is what is the difference between standard dog food and dog allergy food, hypoallergenic dog food? Two main things are different, first that certain ingredients are not included in hypoallergenic dog food, the type of ingredients that would usually cause allergic reactions or intolerance reactions in a dog. I’ve gone into a bit more detail about this in the next section. And the second thing is that quality of ingredients is better as is the production process, to ensure the food is fresher, more nutrient rich and will contribute to overall health.
What Are Dogs Allergic to and How Do They React?
There are five common allergenic foods for dogs, corn, wheat gluten, potato, chicken and soy. Look through ingredients lists on canned foods, dry foods and semi-moist dog foods and you will find that one or more of these are present, in particular the grains wheat and corn in dry and semi-moist foods. Hypoallergenic foods eliminate these five key allergens and in doing so health improvements will be seen in any dog that is allergic to or has an intolerance to these ingredients.
How would you know if your dog is allergic toward or intolerant of one of these ingredients? Well try them on hypoallergenic food and see if their health improves for a start. But signs of a dog that has allergic reaction scan usually be seen in either their skin and coat, and or their digestive system. Typically reaction to allergens is dry skin perhaps with lesions, and a dull coat. Also low energy levels are common. Digestive manifestations include flatulence, bloating, vomiting, bad breath and general lack of appetite. Its not uncommon for several of these symptoms to be present in a dog that is allergic to their food.
How is Hypoallergenic Dog Food Healthier?
The process to manufacture hypoallergenic dog food is usually aimed at keeping the food fresher and purer by eliminating preservatives, artificial colors and flavors. These elements can result in bad health reactions too, so by eliminating them through the manufacturing process the food should be better for your dog.
Also good quality hypoallergenic dog foods swap the allergens for good quality proteins and carbohydrates that promote good health through more vitamins, minerals, amino acids and fatty acids. Dog foods lower in carbohydrates and higher in protein help dogs to have stronger bones and muscles, and healthier appetites while maintaining a healthy weight.
So hypoallergenic dog foods should be beneficial for every dog, no matter breed, size or allergies.