Some dogs that eat dry food can suffer from a flaky, dry, dull, coat. That skin is not the healthiest it could be. Skin that is dry and flaky or greasy can be prone to yeast infections, mite infections, and bacterial infections like staph. It is also important to find out which “bug” or parasite is causing skin problems. After years and thousands of cases passed through my hospital,I started asking,”Why does the skin of some pets allow these continual infections?”
I have found that many skin and ear problems respond to a better diet free of allergens, a bit more healthy fat, and more omega oils.Allergies cause inflamed skin which can’t fight off invaders like healthy skin can. Vets will use ketoconazole for yeast and cephalexin or clavamox type drugs for continual infections by yeast or bacteria. If a better diet is fed, in most cases, the need for continual treatment may be less or not needed at all. Dietary changes may be as simple as avoiding wheat filled treats, changing to a better dry or canned food, or feeding a raw food, or a homemade food.
With any of those diet choices, ingredients have to be considered. I just talked with some pet owners yesterday that thought that a beef based “raw diet” caused blood in the stool, and that is was something in the “rawness” that was bad. Remember, dogs that are fed kibble their whole life may need to transition to a different diet slowly. If you ate “cheerios” your whole life and were fed beef and beef fat all of a sudden, I guarantee that there would be some indigestion, and possibly diarrhea.Perhaps, since the raw food was a beef mix, their dog may have been allergic or sensitive to the beef, causing blood in the stool.
By the way, small purebred dogs often come into the clinic with blood in the stool after eating commercial, wheat filled treats or chews. Colitis, or Blood in the stool can be caused by allergies( Of course, parasites,worms, and parvo virus can also cause bloody stools. Don’t hesitate to get a checkup if your pet has the symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea, or a bloody stool)
So I have found that the ingredients are the most important thing to consider with an allergic dog. I usually recommend going to your local pet store and asking which brands in your area help dogs with allergies. My local pet store sells “Taste of the Wild” salmon and sweet potato, “Natural Balance” limited diets, Merricks canned foods, and orijen for allergic dogs or for people that want to feed a better diet. Less allergens and more healthy oils will help your dog feel it’s best…whether you feed a better commercial food, add healthy ingredients, or home cook using my recipes in “Feed Your Vet to Avoid the Vet”, or those of Karen Becker DVM, Real Food for Healthy Dogs and Cats or Nutritionist Lew Olson,Raw and Natural Nutrition for Dogs. I read them both! The main difference is my recipes are easier due to slow cooking and I talk more about allergies. Both the other books talk more about rotating and feeding raw ingredients.
An allergic dog,needs few ingredients in commercial food or homemade food so that you can find out what works for your pet! In “Feed Your Pet to Avoid the Vet” I teach pet owners to slow cook for their dogs and cats.In Dog Dish Diet I explain how to change commercial food, add human food, or slow cook food to help with medical issues.
An easy way to add healthy oils is to give canned sardines twice weekly,eggs twice weekly, olive or canola oil on the food twice weekly, and a piece of cooked or raw chicken a couple times a week(That’s what I do!) Fish and eggs are two of the healthiest ingredients you can give your pet!
Many people write to say that their vet really didn’t know what other nutritional options there were. Why don’t most vets talk about this stuff? That’s because we weren’t taught nutrition…just kibble-ology.Many nutritional books tell you to visit your vet for advice about the diet. Many vets admit to not knowing much about nutrition other than advising which prescription diet to feed. Don’t blame your vet! It’s how we were educated! I had to relearn nutrition from the animals point of view. What do we feed our domesticated predators with their allergies to help them feel their best!
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dogdishdiet.com is 38th of one hundred on the list for pet blogs to follow in 2013. Check out the other blogs. I don’t really know how my blog was nominated or judged. Maybe there was only 100 judged! However, it made me realize that I haven’t been blogging as much as I should, and to try and produce a weekly blog.A little pressure is good!
An infographic by the team at CouponAudit