Ask An Expert
By Robert Mueller
|Pet allergies can cause discomfort
Sometimes the simplest answers are the most remarkable. For example, we often resort to treating an allergic reaction in an animal by applying what I call “band-aid” fixes. That is, we try to mask the symptoms rather than targeting the core problem, which can often be found in the immune system.
Focusing on the immune system is by far the most “advanced” medical approach known to man today. The explanation is simple…strengthen the immune system, and you have targeted the core of the problem in most cases.
Just like people, dogs show allergic symptoms when their immune systems recognize allergy triggers (called allergens). These allergens are present in our environment, and in most cases, are not harmful to most animals. Dogs with allergies however, can have an extreme reaction to them. Allergens can be contracted by various means; they can be inhaled, ingested, or come in contact with the dog’s skin. As the body’s natural immune system defense mechanism tries to rid itself of these substances, a variety of skin, digestive, and respiratory symptoms usually appear.
The mechanism of action to counter the effects of the allergens is quite complex. The technical discussion involving the immunoglobulin antibodies, mast cells, histamines, and the inflammation that results are topics for another discussion. Suffice it to say, it’s the resultant inflammation that causes the various signs associated with an allergic reaction.
Without question, the first things to resolve are the problematic symptoms that these allergens create. The symptoms are dependent on the type of exposure. To varying degrees, humans and dogs react in similar fashion to skin lesions, itching and scratching, runny eyes, ear infections, sneezing, vomiting, diarrhea, paw chewing, swollen paws, and constant licking. Left untreated and unsupervised, these can lead to secondary infections and may cause hair loss, scabs, or crusty skin.
Many owners then resort to doing a blood test to determine the type of allergen causing the problem. Once identified, the first suggestion is to eliminate these triggers from the diet or environment. Some common triggers are grasses and mold spores, dust mites, fleas, household cleaning products, various food ingredients, shampoos, etc. The interesting point is that there are a multitude of potential allergens that can make life miserable for your animal, yet why is it that many other animals are never affected by these same allergens? The explanation is simple.
It all boils down to the strength of the immune system. If the immune system is compromised, there is little natural defense against allergens. Pets today are continually exposed to environmental triggers, vaccinations, steroids, antibiotics, and most of all, a continuous diet of dead and devitalized dry dog food, all of which weaken the immune system. Our company has partnered with several companies to provide adequate protection and corrective action for both internal and external allergen responses.
For skin irritation or digestive issues causing diarrhea, we suggest an immune boosting probiotic. This miracle treatment acts like a magnet and absorbs toxins that have accumulated in the body. The system is cleansed of heavy metal impurities. This is a powerful way to work in conjunction with the immune system so it can do its magic and keep our pets healthy! Feeding raw diet and adding vitamins will start your pet on the road to good health in a matter of days!
|Robert Mueller, BSc, Pharm. is a registered pharmacist, author of “Living Enzymes: The World’s Best Kept Pet Food Secret”.