food allergies in dogs and cats

Dog eating food

Get help honing in on your pet’s allergy-based itchiness or diarrhea

Food allergies can be tricky to diagnose, because they often share symptoms with many other pet health problems. One thing to bear in mind is that pet allergies, unlike human allergies, don’t typically show up as red eyes or runny noses. Many food allergies will first show up on skin, or as no-fun-for-anyone pet vomit or diarrhea. Your veterinary team is here to help you identify what’s causing the problem, and to offer diet and feeding advice that may help your pet.

Make an appointment

Dogs are 6 times more likely — and cats are 15 times more likely — to  develop uncomfortable skin conditions if they have food allergies. See more about skin symptoms

Vector graphic of dog's ear with ear mites

Possible signs and symptoms of food allergies

Cats and dogs show slightly different reactions with food allergies, but if your pet is showing one or more of these issues, it’s time to talk to the vet.

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Itchy skin or ears
  • Red areas or lesions on skin
  • Scratching their face or biting their feet, sides or tushes
  • Recurring ear infections
Vector graphic of pet DNA with magnifying glass

What can I do to help my pet?

Your first step is to identify that your BFF has an allergy. Once you know what’s causing your BFF’s issues, you can help reduce their exposure to the allergens. It can also help you to catch any new flare-ups before they lead to other problems, like skin infections, that may need additional treatment.
A dog and a cat eating from their food bowls

What foods could be triggering my pet’s allergies? 

Here’s a quick list of some of the most likely culprits. If you suspect food allergies, it always good to keep a list of what foods your pet is eating so you can review that with your vet. 

Dogs

  • Beef
  • Chicken
  • Chicken Eggs
  • Dairy products
  • Fish
  • Lamb
  • Soy

Cats

  • Beef
  • Dairy products
  • Lamb
  • Seafood
  • Soy
  • Wheat gluten
A cat eating from its food plate

Help make a difference with diet and nutrition

What pet food is right for your special doggyBFF or pretty kittyBAE? Get a basic primer on pet foods and pet food ingredients.

See more on diet and nutrition
A dog sitting in front of a food bowl containing red meat cubes and pet food

Can I feed my pet an alternative diet?

Sure! Get the information you need to help you make sure the pet you love gets solid nutrition from their yummy nibbles.

See more about alternative diets
Promo Icon OWP

Optimum Wellness Plans® 

Affordable packages of smart, high-quality preventive petcare to help keep your pet happy and healthy.
See OWP packages