I have a white Dane, Chase, who is allergic to EVERYTHING and has IBD. I have been struggling with this for over a year (15 months). It seems when I get his bowel right he turns into a hairless rat (inflamed ears, hair falls out on his face/neck, red splotches, face itching, etc.). When I get his hair/skin right he loses weight because his bowel is runny. He also has environmental allergies. He is just a big happy mess.
Anyhow, he has been on prescription foods (ID & D/D) with hydrolyzed proteins, as well as limited ingredient premium foods and non-limited ingredient premium foods. It seems like I have to change his food every 10-12 weeks as some symptom starts to appear. I feel like I am running out of options. I always use the dog food advisory site and will not try any foods below a 4 star (mind thing for me…). He is allergic to chicken, pork, fish, eggs and soybean. I have a spreadsheet with a massive amount of data about what foods he has tried, common ingredients, how long he was on them and what symptoms occurred. This is driving me insane!
My vet wants to treat him with prednisone, which we have on a few occasions. I want to find a miracle food that works for his IBD and food allergies (w. accurate protein, calcium levels etc.) – you know, so he can be normal. There is a dog nutritional clinic in Atlanta, GA and they require a referral. They said they would do a phone consultation with my vet for $175 and determine a route based on the information my vet provides them – basically the spreadsheet I have.
Before I go that route…. Has anyone else had this issue and is there a miracle food I could try? Any thoughts would be very much appreciated.
Have you tried any novel proteins like kangaroo, rabbit, duck, buffalo etc.? Also, if you’ve been feeding grain free foods, that might be the problem. Eliminating grain free products from my Dane’s diet really made a difference with his allergies. The hydrolyzed might be your best option if you haven’t tried all the novel proteins, but it is very pricey (when Sully was on it he had no allergic reaction to it). But if you are able to afford it, I would say you should just stick with that. If I was able to keep Sully on the hydrolyzed food I would, but he went through a bag of it every two weeks and thats almost 160 dollars a month.
I have a poodle that I’ve been through food and skin allergies with also, so I feel your pain. I have been going through this for six plus years, and within the last month, I came upon a lady with a holistic pet food store in Boca Raton, FL who has been invaluable. I had been feeding my dog venison and I believe he has become allergic to it. He’s also allergic to all novel proteins. She recommended rabbit and a probiotic, and it appears to have taken care of not only the allergies but the reflux he was beginning to have. Her web address is holisticpetcuisine.com. After years of reading pet food labels, and having to email the parent companies to see what “liver” or “flavor” might refer to, she speaks the language fluently. Her name is Barbara. She sometimes recommends a raw diet, which I have heard mixed feedback on from both sides, but tend to cook the food. Be sure no treats from China, and no cross over ingredients in treats that have proteins your dog might be allergic to. I feel your pain. I have found that not even vets can deal with these issues very well. Email/call Barbara. She will be a new best friend.
Thank you so much for your response, Autumn!!
I’ve tried duck, buffalo and bison in the prescription formulas via Hill’s. Hills seem to have either chicken fat, pork fat or soybean oil, which causes a reaction. I thought being that is was hydrolyzed it wouldn’t cause such a reaction – I was wrong. My next choice was going to be IAMS Vet Formula Skin & Coat Plus Response KO, which is Kangaroo. The only ingredient I see in this food that “may” cause a flare up is fish oil. But it’s worth a shot.
I’ve mainly stayed more toward the grain free. You have an excellent point – perhaps I need to try some non-grain free formulas.
I have 5 great danes and this one is my problem child. Poor guy is a rescue, very badly breed, so he is my permanent foster and I just can’t give up on him.
Thank you, Lisa! Wow, I am going insane only after 15 months. I can’t imagine 6+ years. It’s amazing what we will do for our fur children. Thanks again for the advice. I will certainly reach out.
Have you tried the Royal Canin hydrolyzed diet? When Sully’s allergies appeared, my vet prescribed him this food just so we could see if his allergies were food related or an environmental allergy. My vet told me that if his symptoms did not go away after a month or two of feeding him this food, then his allergies must be environmental because no dogs can be allergic to the Royal Canin hydrolyzed food. After feeding him the RC hydrolyzed diet for about a month or two, his symptoms were completely gone. It was a remarkable improvement. Maybe you should talk to your vet about Royal Canin and try it out. You also might want to consider environmental allergies like grass or something outside.
I to feel your pain. I have three dogs a St Bernard and two labs. My St Bernard is the one with the food allergies. The only thing he can eat is chicken all of the other proteins he is highly allergic to. I ended up taking him to a nutritionist that specializes in food allergies for animals and after everything figured out a food plan that has been working for over a year. Yes taking him to a specialist like that is costly but I have insurance on all three of my dogs and thank goodness they picked up half of the bill. If you have to go with a prescription dog food Royal Canine is the better one, but talk to your vet that’s what they are there for.
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