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Surely you are wondering what is a hypoallergenic diet for cats, or under what circumstances your cat might need this type of feeding. Like humans, other mammals can suffer from allergies of all kinds, from some related to elements found in the environment, such as dust and pollen, to those that are triggered by the consumption of certain foods..
This time, AnimalWised wants you to know all the details about this type of diet for cats, because we know that proper nutrition is the most important thing to keep your feline happy and healthy, contributing to its full development.You may also be interested in: Diet for dogs with liver problems Index
- Is my cat allergic to its food?
- What is the hypoallergenic diet?
- What is the elimination diet?
- Hypoallergenic diet options for cats on the market
- Homemade hypoallergenic diet for cats
Is my cat allergic to its food?
Some animals, like humans, can develop allergic reactions to certain foods, and the cat is one of them. When this occurs, the cat is said to have Food Allergy, because after ingesting the food that is the culprit of the problem, the animal's body generates antibodies to protect itself from the pathogen, which results in typical allergy symptoms.
A food allergy can manifest itself from two years of age, even with your cat's usual food. If you notice that your cat scratches a lot, has diarrhea, and vomits, begins to lose hair and develops dermatitis, it is possible that it is a food allergy, since around 30% of the feline population can suffer from it. When this happens, and to make sure that the problem is due to food and not some other agent, it is necessary to implement a hypoallergenic diet for cats.
What is the hypoallergenic diet?
It receives this name because it is a diet that reduces the chances of the cat having an allergic reaction, thanks to the elimination of foods known to be histamines, or of specific foods that have been proven to unleash this type of problem in the feline.
The idea is that you provide the feline with food whose possibility of causing an allergy is very low, and for this it is necessary to subject it to a elimination diet, through which it is possible to detect which foods are causing the allergic reaction.
It is common that foods usually used for the manufacture of processed food, such as wheat, soybeans, corn, milk and even some type of animal protein, such as beef, can cause allergies in cats, so which are the first to be eliminated.
What is the elimination diet?
This is the only way to diagnose a possible food allergy, after which it will be possible to determine if the problem lies in the cat's food, and a hypoallergenic diet should be chosen, or if the cause of the discomfort must be continued..
The elimination diet consists of stopping the food that has been ingested Until then, to feed the feline different pieces that allow determining which ingredient is causing the allergy. To do this, you should follow the following tips:
- The test of each ingredient should last a week to rule out any reaction, although if it is the allergen you are looking for it is likely that symptoms will manifest in just a few hours.
- While this trial and error is being carried out, vitamin supplements and visits of the cat abroad should be avoided, in order to be sure of what the root of the problem is..
- It is recommended to start with lamb meat and vary the ingredients according to those that appear in the table of processed food that the cat usually consumes, to find the problem faster.
- To confirm that the symptoms are caused by food, it is recommended to return to the usual food after doing the elimination diet for seven days. If the same allergy symptoms are manifested, it is confirmed that the problem lies in the diet. Consumption should be discontinued immediately and return to the elimination diet.
The improvement should be noticeable between the first and third week (A period of eight weeks is recommended to completely detoxify the cat's body). If during this time no progress is observed, then it is not a food allergy and you should go to the vet.
Once you have determined which is the ingredient or ingredients to which your cat is allergic, you can choose between two options: look for a processed food that does not contain them, or prepare your own menu at home and, therefore, prepare a homemade hypoallergenic diet for cats.
Hypoallergenic diet options for cats on the market
Many brands of processed cat food offer hypoallergenic options made with hydrolyzed proteins, which reduces the risk of an allergic reaction.
It is a matter of you researching what are the options available in your country, and you make sure that the food in question does not contain the ingredient to which you already discovered that your cat is allergic. However, around 30% of cats do not get good results with processed hypoallergenic foods, so you will have to resort to the second option.
Homemade hypoallergenic diet for cats
Feeding your feline homemade food may seem complicated, but it really is just a matter of knowing which food groups are necessary. Of course, you will have to completely eliminate the ingredients that you have discovered that cause allergies in your feline.
We recommend that you use lamb, chicken, fish and turkey to prepare the homemade hypoallergenic diet for your cat. Most of the food must be made up of protein, since felines are carnivorous animals. To this, you will add rice in small portions, in addition to some vegetables, salmon oil and taurine. If you still do not know the best vegetables for cats, ¡don't miss our article!
When cooking the foods mentioned to prepare the homemade hypoallergenic diet for cats, you should bear in mind that you can only offer them boiled in water. The cat's metabolism is different from ours and, therefore, it does not digest food in the same way that we do. In this way, we will avoid cooking the meat with oil, spices and other typical products of our kitchen. The more natural the food, the better. In the following video we offer you two simple and quick homemade cat food recipes for you to take as a guide.
You can look for different alternatives to develop different diets. Remember vary the ingredients to get a balanced and complete diet. Consult with your veterinarian about what is best for your cat with a food allergy.