Does Your Dog Have Skin Allergies?

November 11, 2011

We are trying a new dog food with Gator and Maggie, our Weimaraner and Miniature Bulldog, respectively.  Gator recently broke out with hives and they just aren’t going away.  He has always eaten healthy dog food, but sooner or later, a skin allergy will develop.  We had been using the previous food for quite some time without problems.   We’ll give this new diet a try and share the results with you later.

Nutro™ Natural Choice Large Breed Adult Lamb Meal and Rice Dog Food is nutritionally sound, being formulated to meet the nutritional requirements a dog needs.  It does NOT contain any corn and all ingredients appear to be natural, so I’m hoping it will make a difference in Gator’s coat.

Ingredients:  Lamb Meal, Ground Rice, Rice Flour, Rice Bran, Pea Protein, Whole Brown Rice, Poultry Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherals – a source of Vit. E), Lamb Dried Plain Beet Pulp, Natural Flavors, Soybean Oil (preserved with mixed Tocopherols), Sunflower Oil (preserved with mixed Tocopherals), Egg Product, Potassium Chloride, Salt, Taurine, Dried Kelp, Vitamin E Supplement, Zinc Sulfate, Choline Chloride, Zinc Proteinate, Ferrous Sulfate, L-Ascorbyl -2- Polyphosphate (Source of Vit. C),  Biotin, Copper Proteinate, Niacin Supplement, Potassium Iodide, Vit. A Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Vit. B-12 Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement (Source of Vit. B2), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (source of Vit. B6), Thiamine Mononitrate (source of B1), Sodium Selenite, Manganese Proteinate, Manganous Oxide, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (source of Vit. K activitiy), Vit. D3 Supplement, Folic Acid.

While I prefer to feed my dogs a food that contains more meat options in the first 4 ingredients, lamb meal is a good first ingredient.  I’m hoping that the heavy vitamin content of this food will help Gator’s skin condition.  If not, we will know we have fed him a good dog food and will then try something else.  Skin allergies are often a process of elimination until you find the food that works best for a particular dog.

*  After a few months, Gator’s hives have healed, and he’s doing well on this food.  Because we’ve been through numerous skin issues, as well as digestive issues, with our big dog in his 9 years, I fully expect the time will come when we have to make another change.  For now, we are happy to have found a diet that works.  Fortunately, Maggie eats anything and has no problems – skin or digestive.  Let’s hope that continues!


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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

barbara dyer November 19, 2011 at 12:43 pm

I have tried everything & stay away from anything with corn meal. I also give him children’s Benadryl & the vet gave him predizone & he about went crazy -he’s too old for that. I use special shampoos & sprays to calm his skin but still have problems – I’m at my wits end.

Jim November 19, 2011 at 3:18 pm

Barbara, we have avoided corn in dog food for years,yet our Weimaraner is experiencing major skin issues now. Right now we are trying Nutro’s Nature’s Choice Lamb and Rice and his skin is improving. I was once told by a vet that a food that works for awhile may eventually cause an allergy in dogs and you have to change the diet again. Because our boy is 100 lbs – very tall Weimie – we give him an adult Benadryl at night – hidden in a piece of bread. The only time we tried Prednisone with a dog was years ago with our Harlequin Dane, Ginny. No one knew about food allergies back then and Ginny really suffered. She took Prednisone for 3 months and I well remember coming home in the evening soon after treatment began to find a veritable “lake” of pee in the hallway -on carpet. Ginny was mortified because she trained easily and never, ever had accidents in the house. After 3 months, I realized the side effects were not worth the anguish it caused her.

I wish I had an answer for you but right now, we are banking on the diet. Gator hasn’t been eating the Nutro long enough to decide if it is the solution but I will share our experiences here.

I will also copy and paste your note on the Seniors for Pets Facebook page and ask readers to respond with their suggestions. If you haven’t “liked”our page, please do so.


Linda Cheshire April 4, 2012 at 7:36 pm

Okay, you guys have hit a good one again. Each year about this time we experience problems with our chinese crested/rat terrier mix with intense skin irritation. She scratches till she is raw and we are crazy too. We, on the vet’s advice used benedryl and twice had to resort to cortisone injections which of course are not advised to be used without a lot of consideration and after other remedies exhausted. BUT, we never considered it could be in the food!! That is certainly an area we need to look in to with Penny. Glad for this info too! linda c.

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