In the last few years several dog food companies have developed hypoallergenic dog foods.Often dog owners are confused about these products and do not truly understand why they have been developed and when to consider them for their dog and what the benefits might be.
The easiest way to think about hypoallergenic dog food is that these foods contain ingredients that are better suited to a dog’s natural digestive system and they are designed to address a food allergy.
A dog’s digestive system is designed to break down raw proteins and some vegetable matter however the ingredients in many dry and some wet dog foods in the United States are largely made up of corn, wheat, dairy, soy and other grains.This can cause the dog’s own digestive system to work against properly breaking down the food. The result can be an allergy to one or more of the ingredients which can cause health problems; such as itchy skin, hot spots, hair loss, upset stomach, as well as episodes of diarrhea and vomiting.
The ingredients in hypoallergenic dog food designed to work with a dog’s natural digestive system. The ingredients usually vary from what is included in the average dog food available in the Untied States. For instance the protein sources in hypoallergenic dog foods are usually venison meat, duck, rabbit and salmon instead of chicken, lamb or pork. Brown rice is often used instead of corn, wheat, dairy or soy.
Something to keep in mind; the terms organic, natural and hypoallergenic all have very different meanings when you are discussing dog food. A product can be sold as natural and not be organic, or vice versa and hypoallergenic is really about a type of diet rather than being organic or natural.
The best hypoallergenic dog food will be made from organic ingredients and those ingredients will be natural,and not artificial or artificially preserved. But the point of the hypoallergenic food diet is to address an allergy to one or more of the food ingredients the dog is currently consuming in his or her daily food.
Always remember that the health problems listed above can also have other sources, such as flea and or tick bites as well as other parasites. So be sure to have your dog thoroughly checked out by a Veterinary and by all means discuss your dog’s current diet with your Veterinary and seek his or her opinion. In so doing you could save money on future costly Vet visits and improve your best friend’s quality and quantity of life.
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