Facts on Dog Allergies and Dog Food Ingredients
Allergies are very common in dogs. The most common form of allergies is from food, however dogs can also be allergic to things in their environment. If your dog is itching allergies could be a cause.
The only way of really being sure of the cause of your dogs allergies is by having a veterinarian do an allergy test. Most owners avoid this because of the cost involve and instead look for the source of the allergy by other means, such as a process of elimination.
Food allergies often show up as hot spots, ear infections, diarrhea, or vomiting. Some people only focus on treating the symptom rather than looking to cure the problem altogether. To determine if a dog has food allergies the owner must become familiar with reading dog food ingredient lists.
Dog Food Ingredient Lists
Dog food ingredients are listed from the most common ingredient to the least common ingredient. While you should pay attention to all ingredients the common allergy causers usually show up in the top 5 ingredient positions. The most common allergy causing ingredients for dogs are Corn, Wheat, Soy, Pork, and Beef. You may note some foods list “Meat Meal” which can be ANY dead animal (yes even horse, goat, and other dogs) and as such is considered a mystery ingredient, which could easily be an allergy source.
An owner concerned about their dog having allergies should avoid foods with any of these problem ingredients, instead opting for one with Chicken, or Lamb, as the key meat source. Some of these foods are even sold as being for dogs with sensitive stomachs, but an owner still needs to read the label as some of these foods still contain problem ingredients.
In general none of the foods sold in grocery stores, or department type stores are good for pets. They meet the minimum standards, and stop there. A smart owner shops at a pet supply store, livestock feed store, or even at their groomers, and they read the ingredient lists always.
Making your Own Food
Some people take this a step further and make their own food. First putting the dog on a bland diet of rice, and looking for problems as they add new ingredients over time, such as lamb, chicken, and potatoes.
Other Allergy Sources
Dogs can be allergic to things other than food, they can be allergic to the detergent you use to wash their bedding, the chemicals you use to wash your floor. They can be allergic to shampoo used on their hair, conditioner, or even other pets. Dogs can be allergic to grass, and any number of other natural things. Trial and error might expose the source of a dogs allergies, but again, a proper test from a veterinarian should be done to really know the cause.
Other Reasons Dogs Itch
There are many other reasons dogs itch, including fleas, mites, and so forth... To learn more about why a dog might be itching please read : Reasons Why Dogs Itch.
You may also note that dogs who scoot their bums might be doing so because of worms, or they have anal gland problems which a dog groomer, or veterinarian, can remedy by cleaning the anal glands but this will need to be done regularly.