Hypoallergenic Novel And Hydrolyzed Protein Foods: What Are They
While there are no official definitions for hypoallergenic pet foods, you may see products labeled as “hypoallergenic” and people may use this term to describe a variety of different food types and ingredient combinations. Because ‘hypoallergenic’ is not a legally defined term for pet food, products may not be suitable or effective for cats with food allergies.
There are 2 types of therapeutic foods your veterinarian may recommend if a food allergy is suspected. The first type uses hydrolyzed proteins, which means the protein has been broken down into such small pieces that your cat’s immune system does not recognize the allergen. The second type is a food with a novel protein like duck or venison. These protein sources are likely new to your cat and therefore the immune system does not recognize them as a problem.
How Can I Treat My Cat’s Food Allergies At Home
If you can identify and remove the cause of your cats food allergies then home treatment may be possible by allergen-avoidance. You can also use freely available products like essential fatty acids and shampoos at home. However, for other anti-inflammatory medication that may be needed, a veterinary prescription is needed, so you will need to visit the veterinarian.
What Causes Allergies In Cats
According to a 2018 report from Banfield Pet Hospital, cats are vulnerable to three types of allergies: food, fleas, and environmental substances . To complicate matters, some unfortunate cats may have multiple allergies at once.
Tracking down the source of your cats specific allergy can get tedious and expensive. To simplify, start with your vet. They can help you figure out exactly what is making your cat sick. Once you know whats causing the problem, you can get to work on your cats recovery.
The Banfield study found that allergic reactions to fleas and to chemicals in the environment are on the rise, while food allergies are stableand relatively uncommon, affecting only about 0.1 percent of cats. The study, based on 500,000 cats seen at Banfield clinics in the previous year, concluded that food allergies in our pets are uncommon, and other causes of certain skin conditions should be investigated before pursuing a food allergy diagnosis.
We talked with Dr. Bruce Kornreich, Director of the Cornell Feline Health Center, who told us that when cats do have food allergies, it is most often an allergy to a protein. We know that cats get food allergies, and in most cases, they are to the protein source, Dr. Kornreich says. The most common protein source is chicken. But the only way you can show that a cat has a food allergy is to selectively eliminate components of the diet and see how the cat does after a food trial.
Go Sensitivities Limited Ingredient Duck Grain
Best Cat Food for Skin Allergies and Sensitive Stomach: Skin allergies can limit the ingredients your cat is able to tolerate but things get even more complicated when your cat has a sensitive stomach. The key to addressing all of these issues is a healthy, high-quality cat food made with real food ingredients. Better yet, a limited number of ingredients including a novel source of premium animal protein. This Go! Sensitivities Limited Ingredient Duck recipe dry food includes just 8 key ingredients, featuring cage-free duck as the main ingredient. This recipe is complete and balanced for all life stages, so you dont have to worry about switching your kitten to a different adult recipe or your adult cat to a senior formula. It is made with only high-quality, digestible ingredients and it is full of natural flavor and skin- and coat-supporting omega fatty acids.
- Pros: Single novel source of protein, limited ingredient diet, free from common allergens and by-products, highly digestible natural ingredients, complete and balanced for all life stages
- Cons: Expensive compared to traditional kibble
My Cat Has Allergies What Now
If your cat has been diagnosed with having allergic reactions, all hope is not lost.
Your veterinarian will take the next step in finding out what is causing the allergies through allergic tests. If the main culprit turns out to be food, various tests would be done with multiple foods to see where the problem originates.
Cats usually react to proteins in their food. The most common being beef, chicken, seafood, or dairy products. To determine which of these proteins are causing the allergies, your veterinarian will put your cat on a special test diet for about six to eight weeks.
This test diet does not contain any of the proteins your cat has been exposed to. The diet may contain either one of the following:
- A home-cooked meal that does not contain any of the previously eaten proteins
- A commercial meal that has proteins broken down into various small sizes that are not recognized by the immune system
- A commercial meal that does not contain any of the previously exposed proteins
While your cat is on the food trial, no cat treats or any different food should be fed to your cat to prevent them from flaring up.
After the success of the food trial, your veterinarian will gradually introduce your cat back to his original exposed food to see which one will cause a reaction. When your veterinarian finds out the exact protein causing the allergic reaction, they will discuss if you want to maintain the food you used for the food trial or pick out something different.
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Best Cat Foods For Allergies: Hypoallergenic Reviews
Cats can suffer from allergies just as we do! Mild allergies and general intolerances are surprisingly common. Intolerances may go unnoticed with poor coat condition, itchy skin, and stomach upset, all often misdiagnosed as other health problems. Thankfully, severe allergies that will cause your cat to be very sick are rare.
Suppose you suspect your cat isnt in tip-top condition. In that case, you should first contact your vet for advice to rule out any more severe causes for poor health before exploring the possibility of a food allergy or intolerance. Going down this path can take time and patience to identify the cause and find the right food for your sensitive feline.
To help out, we have compiled a list of the top twelve best cat foods for allergies! Each product is backed by positive reviews of cat owners who have successfully eased their own cats reactions to common allergens in their diet.
Treatment Of Dry Food Allergy In Cats
The short term treatment for food allergies may include antihistamines and corticosteroids. Patients with skin infection or otitis may be prescribed antibiotics. Topical antibiotics may also be recommended. The cat may need to wear a cone to prevent him from licking or biting at his skin.
The long term treatment of food allergy is to identify the allergen. Research has proven that serology testing and/or skin testing are not accurate in identifying the allergen causing the allergic reaction. The most common way to identify the allergen is by an elimination diet. A protein and a carbohydrate are fed to the cat for 8-12 weeks, such as duck and sweet potato. At the end of the 8-12 weeks a new protein and carbohydrate are introduced . The veterinarian may recommend adding only one new item at a time. The food trial should continue for a few months. If the cat shows a reaction to one of the ingredients it should be discontinued from his diet. It is a good idea to write down the foods you are feeding your cat and any reactions in a log.
During this time the cat should not be fed treats or flavored vitamins. All members of the household must be asked to comply with the trial .A homemade diet is the better route but there are commercial diets the veterinarian may recommend. A homemade diet is not as difficult as you may think. The use of a crock pot can be a convenient way to easily prepare meals for your cat. Unused portions can be refrigerated or frozen for future use.
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Causes Of Dry Food Allergy In Cats
Common allergens in cat food allergies are:
- Corn – Corn meal and corn gluten are used as fillers in commercial dry food
- Rice – Brewers rice is used as a filler
- Dairy products – Such as milk powder or cheese
- Eggs – Sometimes added to food for a protein source
- Meat by product – Unknown, non-rendered ingredients may contain organs, pieces of tail, hooves, fatty tissue, intestines, blood, or bone these by products provide less nutrition
- Preservatives – Such as BHA or BHT additionally, these preservatives may be carcinogens
- Soy products – Plant derived protein
- Wheat gluten – Used as a filler
- Beef, lamb, chicken, pork or fish
What Is The Best Cat Food For Skin Allergies
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It is normal for your cat to scratch the occasional itch, but frequent scratching and intense itching is not normal. If your cat develops itchy skin, it may be due to a skin allergy or infection and you need to talk to your vet immediately to diagnose and treat the issue. Left untreated, itchy skin can cause your cat to groom itself excessively which may lead to the formation of lesions. When your cat develops skin lesions or breaks the skin from intense scratching, he becomes susceptible to a secondary infection.
The condition of your cats skin and coat is the biggest indicator of whether he is suffering from an allergy. It isnt always easy, however, to determine the cause of that allergy.
Here are some of the most common symptoms of skin allergies in cats:
- Dry and itchy skin
- Excessive grooming
- Hair breakage or hair loss
Though it can be trick to identify the trigger for your cats skin allergies, there are three primary culprits to consider: external parasites, something in their diet, or something in their environment.
Now that you have a better understanding of this health problem, you may be wondering which is the best option for rodent ulcer treatment. In the next section, well talk about treatment options and explore how changing your cats diet might help.
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Dermatitis And Skin Issues In Cats
Did you know the skin is the largest and one of the most vital organs of a cat’s body? Protecting against diseases and even secondary infections, a cat’s skin barrier needs to be supported to help maintain its health. If dermatitis is present, it means the natural skin barrier has been weakened and cats may be at risk of external threats.
Tips For Keeping Your Cats Stomach Healthy
If you have been a long-time cat owner, you understand that even the healthiest feline can have stomach upsets from time to time. Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent food allergies in your pet, yet there are some ways that you can make life better for them. Take a look at these tips below for keeping your tabby in the best digestive shape possible.
Regardless of whether you feed your cat dry or wet food, you need a bowl that is sure to keep the mess containedyou can do just that with the Hepper Nom Nom Bowl.
This is designed with your cats comfort in mind. The whisker-friendly bowls are low and wide to prevent whisker fatigue, and the wide catch tray ensures that all food stays exactly where it shouldinside the bowl.
At Excited Cats, weve admired Hepper for many years and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool cat company!
Want to see more cat food reviews?Check out our review page here!
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Best Cat Foods For Skin Allergies
Does your cat seem to be scratching more than usual? Does he groom himself to the point that hes losing patches of hair? Do you notice small scabs or worse, large lesions forming on this back or belly?
- Rich in real animal protein
- Blend of omega-3
All of these symptoms point toward a big problem skin allergies. A little bit of itching and scratching is normal, but if it becomes a chronic and recurring issue, it might be something more than just the occasional itch. Skin allergies can be triggered by a variety of things, and it isnt always easy to tell what the trigger is. The more you learn about skin allergies, the better youll be able to discern the cause of your cats symptoms of they develop and the sooner you can seek veterinary care.
In this article, well explore the subject of skin allergies in cats including what they are, what symptoms they produce, and how to treat them. Well also take a closer look at the difference between skin allergies and food allergies in cats, focusing particularly on the dietary implications of both. Finally, youll see our top picks for the best cat food for skin allergies.
Why You Should Trust Us
Over the last year, weve written in-depth reviews of over 115 cat food brands and hundreds of formulas. We spent hours researching, contacting pet food companies, and analyzing labels. With the help of our cats, we also got hands-on experience with a few foods.
Between reviewing specific brands and researching feline nutrition, weve learned which brands and products are worth buying and putting in your cats bowl.
Based on that experience, weve chosen the 10 products described below as the best cat food you can buy in 2021.
Don’t Miss: Blue Buffalo Wilderness Chicken Cat Food
Buyers Guide: Selecting The Best Hypoallergenic Cat Food
If your feline friend suffers from food allergies or sensitive stomachs, certain meals can help keep their tummies happy. It is important to know what to look for so you can ensure they are getting the correct amount of nutrients that they need. Finding them a hypoallergenic cat food can be tricky, but were here to help you find the best food for cats with allergies in our buyers guide below.
Causes Of Food Allergies In Cats
Any food ingredient can provoke an allergy. The most common food allergens are beef , fish , chicken , with wheat and corn.
This is an immune-mediated disease , with affected cats having a genetic predisposition to developing food intolerance or hypersensitivity to allergens in their food.
Any food ingredient can provoke an allergy. The most common food allergens are beef , fish , chicken , with wheat, corn, dairy products and lamb .
Other less commonly reported culprits include eggs, pork, rabbit, whale meat, and barley. Carbohydrates are less likely to provoke allergies than proteins. Cats can have an allergy to more than one food ingredient at a time.
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The Nine Most Common Food Allergies In Cats
Nine ingredients frequently cause food allergies in cats. Cats affected by allergy or intolerance to foods develop itchy dry skin or skin rashes, particularly around the face and ears. If your cat spends long periods of time scratching at himself and there are no fleas or ticks present, cat food allergies may well be the problem.
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How Else Can I Help My Allergy
Cat allergies are quite common, and cat food allergies are one of the main reasons that cats suffer from food intolerance.
To help your cat with his food allergies, we suggest doing plenty of research and consulting with a veterinarian before you go about changing your cats diet.
We hope this article has helped you navigate how to best feed your sensitive cat. May all your cats nine lives be filled with happiness, health, and yummy foods!
Leave us a comment to let us know how your food search goes!
Affiliate link disclosure:Links in this article marked with an * are affiliate links, and we may receive a small commission if you purchase these products. However, we selected them for inclusion independently, and all of the views expressed in this article are our own.
Therapeutic Trial With Special Diet
A food trial or Elimination Diet Trial , offering only a special limited antigen diet with a restricted protein source) for 6 12 weeks is the only definitive way to rule in or out food allergy.
The cat must have access to nothing else other than the special hypoallergenic diet for this duration. If the cat improves during the elimination trial, then the diagnosis is confirmed, while if the cat continues to show signs of inflammation then the diagnosis is ruled out.
Sometimes at the end of the trial period, a dietary challenge may be tried, deliberately stopping the exclusions and feeding the suspected offending allergen to see if there is a reaction. Often, however, this is not done because understandably, pet parents do not want their cat to develop signs again.
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Checking For A Food Sensitivity
While youll see quick tests for cat food allergies advertised online, the Cummings Veterinary Center at Tufts states unequivocally that they dont work. Talk with your vet instead.
If your vet suspects your cat has a food allergy, they might ask you to switch your cat completely to a special prescription diet, called a hypoallergenic diet, for up to three months. The hypoallergenic diet consists of cat food made up of hydrolyzed proteinsthe proteins have been broken down so the cats immune system cant detect any allergenic components. If the allergy symptoms disappear in the hypoallergenic diet but then return when the cat goes back to regular food, its pretty clear your cat has a food allergy.
At that point, your vet may ask you to go back and forth between the hypoallergenic diet and various limited-ingredient foods to try to figure out which protein was the culprit in the allergic reaction.