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Sunday, October 21, 2007

Pet Allergies: Not What You Think

Gizmo is a very special bunny. He's allergic to carrots and lettuce.

Yes, pets have exactly the same problems with food allergies, hypersensitivities, and intolerances as humans do. We're all mammals after all.

Take a look at this article by Siobhan Reardon in the Scotsman.

"And while there are blood and skin tests, we usually first look at doing a food trial with the animal. The owner needs to feed the animal a completely novel diet for about six to nine weeks. It's quite a challenge, particularly if the animal lives outside."

Chris [Ross, of the Braid Veterinary Hospital in Edinburgh] remembers one case of a cat which was brought in with terrible ulcers around its ears and head and it took 18 months to discover what the problem was.

"We ruled out all the usual allergies to fleas, parasites and mites and then somehow we got the condition under control.

"The cat was doing well for about a year until the owner's boyfriend moved in and the cat quickly deteriorated. After much questioning, the boyfriend admitted to feeding the cat pizza. Culprit found."

Reardon does make a common error herself later on.
ALTHOUGH its not an allergy, it is worth remembering that most animals (bar cows and humans) are intolerant to cow's milk.

Please. All adult animals are naturally intolerant to all milks. And that means that adult cows are just as intolerant to cow's milk as they would be to any other animal's milk. This holds for humans as well, since the vast majority of adult humans are intolerant to cow's milk. Just because most Scotsmen can drink it doesn't means it holds true for the whole human race.

However, the next paragraph is accurate and good advice.
People frequently call the Scottish SPCA about injured animals and, while they are waiting for an inspector to call, will resort to feeding the animal milk. But this can sometimes make the situation worse as it may cause diarrhoea and therefore cause further distress to the animal.

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