If your dog is constantly itchy, you’ve probably tried many things to bring relief. Perhaps you’ve tried changes to their diet to help? Dietary intervention is a popular approach to treating canine atopy (allergic dermatitis).
What is dermatitis in dogs?
Atopic dermatitis in dogs causes hypersensitivity and over-reactivity to commonplace substances in the environment. Allergens can include plant pollens, house dust mites, mould spores. Atopic dogs will scratch, chew, lick, or rub areas of the body such as their paws, face and rear end. This list of symptoms isn’t complete, and your vet should make a diagnosis.
If you have an atopic dog, you probably already know about it. You may have considered if there are drug-free ways to help alleviate the discomfort your dog is experiencing. Perhaps you’ve heard of Raw Feeding as something talked about as an option from some sources.
Raw feeding atopic dogs
The University of Helsinki in a recent study has found positive differences in increased antioxidant production and anti-inflammatory effects of those dogs in the study that had a raw fed diet compared to those that ate dry food.
Previously researchers have identified that there are differences in gene expression between atopic and healthy dogs. The expression of these genes affects fat metabolism, skin layer formation and creation of new blood vessels near the skin.
Both healthy and atopic dogs took part in the study. They were divided into groups that were fed either dry food or raw food. An equal number from each group were then selected for the study of their genetic information.
The results in this study are preliminary as the sample size was small and doesn’t account for other possible variables. Even so, there is a growing community of dog carers that advocate the use of raw feeding. Many people report observable improvements in skin health and the reduction of other allergy symptoms in dogs.
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