Integrating Custom Homemade Recipes into Medical Programs for Dogs with Allergic Skin Disease:
Dermatitis or skin disease caused by food is extremely rare and can only be conclusively diagnosed with food testing (not oral, blood, or skin tests). Food allergies arise from a reaction your dog’s body has from encountering a protein that it cannot tolerate. This allergic reaction causes red, painful ears, scratching with hair loss, and skin wounds, especially around the anus.
Eliminating the protein allergen results in skin and ear relief. Often food allergic dogs also have environmental allergies that won’t respond to a diet change alone. These patients may need additional medical or alternative treatment.
Our dog food recipes for food allergies contain protein and carbohydrate sources that are thought to be hypoallergenic by veterinary dermatologists. Unfortunately, the proliferation of boutique dog foods with novel proteins and carbohydrates is exposing more and more dogs to ingredients once considered hypoallergenic so these ingredients may not work if a dog has been exposed to novel proteins in the current diet.
Healthier Homemade dog food recipes for skin allergies have a calorie distribution that is superior to most commercial dog foods. The hypoallergenic recipes are appropriate for normal adult dogs, they are not formulated for puppies.
Your dog’s diet is only one tool for allergic skin disease management, it is not a substitute for a comprehensive veterinary treatment plan. This is especially true for dogs with both food and environmental allergies. A treatment may also include allergy testing, immunotherapy, anti-itching medications (apoquel, cytopoint, corticosteroids), antibiotics and antifungals for severe skin and ear infections.
Veterinary supervision is also necessary for successful management as food and environmental allergies can be a progressive condition and may need more medical intervention with time. Healthier Homemade recipes for food allergies may not be appropriate for patients that also have dietary restrictions for other conditions (kidney disease, urinary stones, liver shunts or cancer).
Each Healthier Homemade Starter Kit includes a nutrition data fact sheet, so owners and their veterinarians can see that all of the 42 daily essential nutrients exceed 100% of AAFCO and NRC required levels in meals prepared with our recipes, when used as directed. Commercial prescription diets, especially kibble, may be unappealing. Freshly cooked meals make a difference!
Dr. Ken Tudor is a recognized expert and leader in the field of pet nutrition and fitness. In addition to co-founding a national campaign to help fight dog obesity, he developed a pet weight management program and served on the American Animal Hospital Association task force to develop their Weight Management Guidelines for Dogs and Cats.