Growing up, I thought I had bad allergies….recently, I learned that I am nothing compared to the rest of my family. Not counting my parents, sister, and the lovable dork’s (LD) family, my family consists of my fiance (the lovable dork) and our dog, Tasha. As a kid, LD had to get allergy tested and received allergy shots. No big deal….or so I thought. On Monday, we all took a trip to my parent’s house. Almost immediately, my allergies consisted of itchy eyes and a stuffed nose. I took a single allergy med and was fine. What about the other two? Oh boy! LD couldn’t breathe out of his nose and there were tears streaming down his face. Gave him one kind of allergy med, no dice. Two, started to get a little better, after running an air purifier on high for 30 minutes, he finally started to breathe easy again. Tasha, well she was worse. She started scratching herself non-stop and her breathing was like a shrill whistle. Two allergy meds later and the air purifier….she was only scratching once every other minute. I was the kid who pretty much lived on allergy meds from the spring through late fall and cannot have real flowers at my wedding so that I can breathe during the ceremony, but boy am I small fries.
Because during the 3 months we have had Tasha, she had started pulling out the hair on her back. We decided to get her allergy tested. Just so you know, even though we have dog insurance, apparently allergies are considered a pre-existing condition, even if the dog is nearly 3 years old and you have vet records from the rescue for every month for the past year saying she is a healthy dog and her skin and fur look great. She has some behavioral difficulties being both a cattle dog and a stray for the first year of her life, making her difficult to adopt, but more on that some other day.
Her allergy testing resulted in the following:
Foods: She is allergic to carrots, beets, potatoes, chicken, venison, fish, turkey, rice, sweet potato, and oats. (She is not affected by the biggest dog food allergies: corn, wheat, soy, yeast, beef, eggs, or milk, just a little laugh at us from God).
Trees in our area: Birch, Cedar, Cottonwood, Elm, Oak, and Pine (thank god we got a fake Christmas tree this year)
Insects: Bees, Ants and Fleas
Indoor Allergens: Cats, mice, cotton lint, and Kapok (can anyone tell me what kapok is?)
Other: 5 kinds of grasses, 8 kinds of flowers/weeds, 2 kinds of mold, dust mites, and a few kinds of skin infections.
I mean the cats are easy to avoid (except when we go to the vet), because both LD and myself are also allergic. Trust me, vet visits aren’t fun for any of us! But, the really difficult thing to figure out is food for Tasha. I mean, what kind of dog is allergic to so many different kinds of meat!!! We only have a few options left and chicken seems to be in everything. We are working on getting a couple of different treats and analyzing from there. I will write a review of all of them so that other people who are trying to avoid these items for their dogs can hear about them. We also are down to 3 dry food options. I will analyze the one that came in today a little later: Canine Caviar Holistic Lamb and Pearl Millet ALS.
If you have any suggestions for treats Tasha can eat, please let me know!