Best Type of Diets for Cats With Skin Allergies
- by Erika Buenaflor
As cat owners, we know how frustrating it can be to see our feline friends suffer from skin allergies. It can be a painful and uncomfortable experience for them, and it's our responsibility to find the best possible solution to alleviate their discomfort.
In this article, we'll dive into the world of feline nutrition and explore the ideal dietary choices for cats navigating the itchy waters of skin allergies.
Causes, Symptoms, and Types of Skin Allergies in Cats
Before we delve into the best diets for cats with skin allergies, let's first discuss the causes, symptoms, and types of skin allergies that our feline friends can experience. Skin allergies in this species can be caused by a variety of factors, such as flea bites, food allergies, and even environmental allergens like pollen.
The clinical signs can range from mild itching to severe skin inflammation and hair loss. Common types of skin allergies in cats include flea allergy dermatitis, allergies to food, as well as atopic dermatitis.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Skin Allergies in Cats
If you suspect that your cat has skin allergies, the first step is to go to your vet for a proper diagnosis. Unfortunately, allergies aren't as easy to treat as you might imagine, especially if the cause isn't easily diagnosed.
Offending allergens exist everywhere, whether on the cat's skin (fleas), in the cat's environment (dust, pollen, or others), or in the cat's food. An allergy can also be a symptom of consistent stress caused by moving homes, a new pet, or a new baby.
Once your cat has been diagnosed with skin allergies, your vet may recommend a specific diet, antihistamines, anti-inflammatory medication, and supplements containing omega-3 fatty acids and biotin. These have been found to help with coat and skin conditions in felines.
What Do You Feed Cats With Skin Allergies?
Elimination Trial Diets
One of the best ways to determine if your cat has a food allergy is through an elimination trial diet. This means removing all potential allergens from your cat's diet and slowly reintroducing them one by one. This can help you identify which specific food is causing your cat's skin allergies.
Hydrolyzed Protein Diets
Hydrolyzed protein diets are another option for cats with skin allergies. These diets are made up of proteins that have been broken down into smaller molecules, which are less likely to cause an allergic reaction.
Novel Ingredient Diets
Novel ingredient diets are another great option for cats with skin allergies. These diets are made up of proteins that your cat has not been exposed to before, making it less likely for them to have an allergic reaction. The ingredients are not chicken, beef, pork, lamb, or fish. Instead, pet food manufacturers use unique protein sources such as elk, venison, kangaroo, or ostrich.
Cats are obligate carnivores. It might be a disappointment, but most commercial cat food brands out there do not consider this important detail when crafting their recipes. Some of the cheap pet food varieties you might come across have as little as 10% protein from meat by-products and other controversial sources.
If you do not have the time to cook your cat's food at home, there's always the option of ordering it from a service. So long as it is designed with a veterinary or pet nutritionist's advice, such a solution might be better and healthier in the long run for your cat.
Grain-Free Diets for Cats
Grain-free diets are becoming more popular among cat owners. While there is no conclusive evidence that grain-free diets are better for cats with skin allergies, some cats may benefit from them, especially since this species is not genetically engineered to have foods like corn or wheat on a regular basis.
Common Foods Cats Are Allergic to
In addition to the options above, knowing which foods your cat may be allergic to is important. Some common foods that cats are allergic to include:
- Chicken and beef cat food
- Dairy products
While it can be challenging to find the best diet for cats with skin allergies, there are many options available. It's important to work closely with your vet to identify the cause of your cat's allergies and find the best diet for them. If your cat has nothing against taking a bath now and then, check out our Itch Relief – this medicated shampoo does wonders in treating irritated skin. In the end, with a little patience and persistence, you can help your feline friend live a comfortable and happy life.