I once had a customer who brought her two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels in for their grooming appointment. I noticed they started scratching the second they stood still. I asked her about it and she stated they did that all the time and she didn’t know why. Throughout the entire grooming session the dogs were scratching non-stop. I applied aloe to the skin to see if that would offer any relief but to no avail. When she returned to pick them up I advised her that a change to a hypo-allergic brand of food would be wise and to also give them a supplement that should cure the itching quickly. The supplement I recommended was called Quercetin.
Quercetin is a phytochemical that is part of the coloring found in the skins of apples and red onions. It has been isolated and is sold as a dietary supplement. It contains natural anti-histamine, anti-inflammatory, and anti-carcinogenic effects.
About 6 weeks later the dogs returned. Their symptoms had reversed completely and they weren’t scratching anymore. Their skin even looked healthier with no signs of dermatitis or dander. It’s not hard to believe that dogs suffer from food allergies just like people do. Once all food allergens are removed from the diet, Quercetin should be supplemented until symptoms cease. For the Cavaliers I recommended giving each dog 1 capsule twice daily with food and to come back in a few weeks for a follow up.
Here is a list of symptoms of food allergy that you just might notice your dog has.
Symptoms of food allergy or intolerance:
♣ Excessive scratching (and no sign of fleas, ticks or lice)
♣ Runny eyes
♣ Dermatitis (redness and inflammation of the skin)
♣ Topcoat Shedding/Excessive Hair Loss
♣ Bad Breath
♣ Rapid Hear Rate (Panting at Rest)
It’s not impossible to figure out all of the foods your dog is allergic to. It just takes a little time. Feeding a raw food diet allows you to single out ingredients to see which ones are causing a problem.
Start with one meat (usually chicken), one vegetable, one essential fatty acid, and either brown rice or white potato for a starch. Keep them on this diet for at least 2 weeks to let the body flush out the histamines from their former food. If your dog’s symptoms stop add one more vegetable and change the source of meat. Do this every couple of weeks to test their food intolerance. If any symptoms occur remove new ingredients and go back to the old recipe. Pretty soon you’ll be able to, through process of elimination, find out everything your dog is able to eat and avoid the ones they can’t. This will lead to less veterinary visits for ‘unknown causes of symptoms’ and make your dog the healthiest it can be.
Keeping a supply of Quercetin on hand for allergy symptoms, like dermatitis or severe itching, is also a great idea. Quercetin is all natural and can be found at your local health food store.
***NOTE*** We do not endorse any specific brand of supplement. Picture above is just to show an example of what a bottle would look like. There are many wonderful brands available in your local health food store.