Food Allergy In Cat
Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatments of Food Allergy in
Food allergy does not only affect humans but also animals. It commonly
affects cats and is considered among the major causes of atopy, and
flea bite allergies. Cats may develop food allergies from frequently
fed types of food.
Cats become sensitive with a certain food ingredient. Thus the
antibodies in their intestinal tracts respond resulting to food
allergy. In fact, among all types of allergies, food allergies are more
prone to cats with a ten percent ratio.
Food allergies can affect female, male, and neutered cats. And it is
also a misconception linking specific breeds of cats to food allergies.
This condition can trigger symptoms in cats as young as five months old
and as mature as twelve years old. But the majority of food allergy
cases in cats occur between two and six years old. Cats having food
allergies also have contact with inhalant allergies.
The major distinction of food intolerances from food allergies must be
learned to correctly manage food allergy in cats. Food allergies are
considered as true allergies showing characteristic symptoms such as
itching as well as skin problems linked with canine and feline
allergies. If vomiting or diarrhea occurs without creating allergic
responses, then it is only food intolerances. Cat food intolerances are
similar to humans getting stomach trouble or diarrhea because of eating
fried or spicy foods. Both food allergies and food intolerances can be
prevented by utilizing foods without offending agents.
Several studies revealed that some food ingredients are the major
triggers of food allergies compared to others. The most common culprits
in cats are beef, dairy products, and fish. As many pet owners have
observed, these are the major ingredients found in cat foods. Although
some proteins are slightly more antigenic, still it comes in similar
forms. Thus allergic reactions depend on the amounts of exposure.
The symptoms of food allergies in cats are the same to most types of
allergies. But the main symptoms are itchy skin, excessive scratching,
miliary dermatitis, and hair loss. It can be difficult for pet owners
to distinguish cats suffering from food allergies or atopy through
physical signs. However, they must suspect of food allergy if symptoms
start to manifest during the winter or all year-round and cats failed
to respond to steroid and antihistamine treatments.
Diagnosing food allergies in cats is very simple provided that you can
recognize symptoms of the different types of allergy. Food allergy
symptoms can be similar to symptoms of bacterial or yeast infections,
notoedric mange, seborrhoea, and hypersensitivity to intestinal
It is very important to perform food trials to cats. Provocative
testing and elimination diets can be done. Feed the cat with novel
foods that contain carbohydrates and proteins for twelve weeks without
treats. One typical example is potato and duck, or potato and venison.
These types of food are commercially available or can be made at home.
Young growing cats have already special nutritional needs. Homemade
diets containing one carbohydrate and one protein without fatty acids
and multivitamins can be fed for twelve weeks. Food trials in kitten
are done through feeding a commercially balanced diet. After twelve
weeks, feed the cats with previous foods they once eat, if symptoms
appear, then it is food allergy. Other perform blood testing, but it is
not that accurate compared to food trials.
The treatment of food allergy in cats is also simple. Feed the cats
with specialized commercial diets form Purina or Hill or homemade