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Allergy Testing vs. Food Intolerance

Are you are up to date of your vet visits but your pet has been exhibiting recurring or unwanted symptoms such as paw biting & licking, upset stomach, constant scratching, hot spots, excessive hair loss, & extreme gas?  

Your pet could be suffering from a food intolerance.

 

We all know what an allergy is, but what is an intolerance?

An allergy is an immune system response that is typically immediate and can be life threatening. An intolerance does NOT involve the immune system and may appear several hours to several days after ingestion or exposure. They are not life threatening. Due to the delayed reaction time, it is very difficult to identify an intolerance. Typically, intolerance testing is needed to identify the food items that are triggering symptomatic responses in your pet.

That is where 5Strands Affordable Testing comes in. They have created an at home HAIR/FUR collection kit. No swabs involved! Using Bioresonance technologies, they can determine the food items that are creating an imbalance in your pet's body that manifests itself in those unwanted symptoms.

Using their customized report, you can start eliminating the foods that triggered a response to see if your pet's symptoms lessen or go away altogether. Once your pet’s symptoms lessen, you can start reintroducing food items just one at a time and see how your pet responds. This is how you would create your pets forever diet.

Most vets do not do intolerance testing.

They do not even believe in intolerance testing. Most have only been trained in allergy testing. However, only 2% or less of our pets suffer from a true allergy. The gold standard in determining a food intolerance is the elimination diet. However, it can be expensive and very time consuming to try to conduct an elimination diet on your own. That is why the 5Strands Pet Food Intolerance test was created. It does all the hard work for you! It will test up to 255 food items that your pet could have an intolerance to. All you need to do is utilize the report and start removing the items that they react to and see if they get better.


What is food intolerance?


While allergies and intolerances may produce a similar reaction or response in your pet’s body, an intolerance is different in many ways. A food intolerance is a non-immune system response. The pet’s body has an inability to process and digest certain food items. Mostly due to lack of the digestive enzymes. It is not life threatening.


Why do dogs have it?


The main reason your dog will develop intolerances is that they lack the digestive enzymes to break a particular food down. In addition, inflammation, infections, surgery, and some medications can damage the lining in their digestive system which could lead to intolerances.


Why do cats have it?


The main reason cats develop intolerances is similar to dogs, they lack the digestive enzymes to break a particular food down. In addition, inflammation, infections, surgery, and some medications and the wrong diets can damage the lining in their digestive system which could lead to intolerances. Cats are obligate carnivores which means their diet must consist of 70% meat and the rest needs to be made up of pre-digested plant, fungi, and fruits. Many pet parents tend to free feed their cats and that often means a highly processed carbohydrate rich diet versus a species appropriate high moisture meat based diet. For this reason our kitties have difficulty digesting foods their bodies cannot naturally break down and over time this type of feeding can result in various health issues that stem from intolerances.


What are they reacting to?


We know that the longer the exposure to a particular food, the more likely a pet is to develop a sensitivity to that food. That’s one reason that feeding your dog the same thing for many months or years can lead to intolerances. Since the reaction does not involve the immune system, their body is not creating antibodies. The reaction is at the T-cell level. It creates an inflammatory type of response.

Symptoms of food intolerances

If your pet is experiencing food intolerance symptoms, they will typically show up as digestive symptoms such as gas, bloating, belching, vomiting, or diarrhea. In addition, we can also see skin issues such as itchiness, redness, biting, scratching, bacterial or yeast infections.

How do we treat it or cure it?


Avoidance is the initial treatment. Once you have identified the offending food items, you can slowly reintroduce them back into your pet’s diet. Sometimes they will be able to tolerate the once offensive food in moderation. As each pet is unique, their “dosing” factor will vary also. Some pets will be able to eat a food item 4 times per week without developing any symptoms while others may be only able to eat the same food 2 times per week. This is part of your discovery process during the reintroduction phase of the diet.

In addition to feeding in moderation, you should be feeding your pet different food in rotation. This would involve feeding your dog 3-4 different protein/vegetable sources in rotation. This will also help to ensure better nutritional balance in the diet. In addition, it will help reduce the likelihood of your pet developing intolerances again.

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