What Are the Symptoms of Dog Food Allergy?


What Are the Symptoms of Dog Food Allergy?

Did you know that, just like humans, dogs can develop food allergies?

Yes, they can. Just like humans can develop food allergies at any time, so can dogs. This means your dog could get allergic to its new food if you change his diet, just like he could suddenly become allergic to the food he has eaten for years.

But what are the symptoms of a dog food allergy, and what can you do if your dog is allergic to its food? Let’s find out.

Gastrointestinal issues

Dogs with food allergies often have gastrointestinal issues, such as vomiting and diarrhea, which usually happen very quickly after they eat something they are allergic to.

As you might know, vomiting and diarrhea are common symptoms of a dog’s health issues. They are a sure sign that something is wrong with your dog, but knowing exactly what that is can be difficult.

However, gastrointestinal issues are often accompanied by skin issues when a dog is allergic to dog food.

What should you do if your dog seems allergic to dog food?

If you think your dog has dog food allergy symptoms, you must take him to a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis. Blood allergy tests could help determine whether your dog’s symptoms are food allergy symptoms, but they might not tell you which ingredient he is allergic to. The veterinarian will likely recommend an elimination diet. This means you should remove one ingredient from your dog’s diet by switching to a different type of dog food that doesn’t contain it.

Suppose you have been feeding your dog beef-flavoured dog food for years. Try feeding him chicken-flavoured dog food for some time, and check whether his symptoms disappear or persist.  If the symptoms disappear, keep feeding him dog food without beef. If they persist, you must try a different type of food from pet stores. Continue until you figure out which ingredient caused the allergic reaction.

Skin issues

Skin issues are often related to food allergies. If you notice that your dog is frequently scratching and that excessive scratching has resulted in skin lesions or infections, it could be a sign that he is allergic to an ingredient in his dog food.

Some other signs to look for include:

  • Skin rashes
  • Leathery skin
  • Scaly or oily skin
  • Unusual skin pigmentation
  • Hair loss

These skin issues can be coupled with symptoms such as sneezing, red eyes, and eye discharge.

Frequent ear infections

If your dog has frequent ear infections, it could be another symptom of dog food allergy.

Dog food allergies do not directly cause ear infections. But allergens, yeast and bacteria can grow in your dog’s outer ear canal, causing inflammation and infection.

You will know your dog has an ear infection if he scratches his ears and smells foul.

Which dog food ingredients can cause an allergic reaction?

Many dog food ingredients can trigger an allergic reaction. If you always feed your dog the same type and flavour of dog food, it might be more likely to develop an allergy to one of these ingredients.

Your dog’s allergy symptoms should disappear once you know which ingredient is to blame.


Beef is a very common ingredient in dog food, so it shouldn’t surprise you that it’s also one of the most common food allergens for dogs.


Chicken is another common ingredient found in dog food, and unfortunately, dogs often react to it.


Lamb can be a healthy alternative to beef or chicken for allergic dogs. However, some dogs may develop an allergy to it.


Some dogs are allergic to egg yolk protein. It’s important to avoid feeding them egg-containing dog food.


Dogs can be allergic to dairy products, which are present in dog food. However, most will be lactose intolerant instead of allergic.


Dogs are rarely allergic to wheat, but it can happen. Dogs that are allergic to wheat need grain-free dog food.


Soy can also cause allergies in dogs and other health issues. Since different ingredients commonly found in dog food can trigger allergies, seeing a veterinarian is important. They can help you figure out if your dog is allergic and, if so, to which food allergen.

Related Posts