The majority of the time, if you feed your pooch a diet of premium dry dog food in suitable quantities then you can rest assured that your pet is getting all the nutrients they need to lead a happy, healthy and active life.
However, occasionally owners may find that their pup has an adverse reaction to the food they're eating and suffer from symptoms such as skin irritation, ear infections, frequent bowel movements and over-excitement.
When any of these symptoms occur, the first thing you should do is visit the vet to see if there is an underlying medical cause. But if an expert believes the symptoms are associated with food intolerance or allergy then it might be time to start thinking about how to treat adverse food reactions.
Keep a food diary
If you think your dog is suffering from a food allergy or intolerance then the first thing you need to do is to identify the trigger, and this is best done by closely scrutinising everything your pet eats on a daily or weekly basis.
A food diary that includes everything ingested by your dog (including things they may have accidentally eaten like rubbish and cat food) is the place to start. Once this is done take a look over it to see what can be cut out altogether such as human treats and supplementary or complimentary foods.
Once you've cut these out you may see that the symptoms have been alleviated, but if not you may want to consider switching your canine companion's diet, since it may be that the commercial food they're eating is causing the problem.
Feed hypoallergenic natural dog food
If you do choose to switch your pet's food, make sure it is to a brand that specialise in natural food that doesn't contain any of the additives and preservatives that could cause a reaction or allergy.
An even better idea is to feed a hypoallergenic diet such as that offered by James Wellbeloved dog food. This brand has closely identified the ingredients most likely to cause allergies and intolerance, creating a diet that is unlikely to cause a reaction.
Keep track of extra treats
Even if you're feeding a diet of high quality hypoallergenic dog food, reactions can still occur because a pooch has access to other foodstuffs that may not react so well with their digestive system.
Therefore, when tackling food intolerance it is important to keep a close eye of everything your dog is eating and cut out anything that may trigger an adverse reaction such as human foods or treats.
This doesn't mean that you have to give up treating your dog altogether, but if you are going to feed your pup tasty morsels then make sure they are made from healthy ingredients and are specially designed for canine consumption.
In addition, you can also purchase hypoallergenic dog treats, which are ideal if your pet has ever shown symptoms such as skin irritation or eye infections and are pretty tasty too.
Written by: Hannah Dyball