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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 24397
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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Candy I was just reading the notes from above. I have

Customer Question

Hi Candy I was just reading the notes from above. I have similar issues as well. I have an American Bulldog. My og keeps getting hives as well. Took to vet gave him Cortizone shot etc. He is taking Bendyl and Triamacinolone. This started about a week ago. One day he will have them and next he will not. I am thinking it is his food too now since you said they can be on same food for about 6 months then change. He is on Pedigree Puppy. He still acts find as well. He has been vomiting on regular basis like once a day, but sometime due to choking because eating too fast or chews up everything. He is almost 6 months. Thanks
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

Food intolerance should be a consideration when both an urticarial reaction - hives, wheals - and gastrointestinal distress - inappetence, vomiting and/or diarrhea - is seen in my patient. Food intolerance/allergy is addressed with prescription hypoallergenic diets. These special foods contain just one novel (rabbit, duck, e.g.) animal protein or proteins that have been chemically altered (hydrolyzed) to the point that his immune system doesn't "see" anything to be allergic to. The over the counter hypoallergenic foods too often contain proteins not listed on the label - soy is a common one - and these proteins would confound our evaluation of the efficacy of the hypoallergenic diet. The prescription foods are available from his vet. There are many novel protein foods and a prototypical hydrolyzed protein food is Hill’s Prescription Diet z/d ultra (a hydrolyzed protein diet is my preference). A positive response is usually seen within a few weeks if we’ve eliminated the offending food allergen. Yes, food intolerance can arise at any age and even after our patient has been eating the same food for quite some time.

It's important to note, too, that multiple allergens may be involved in such a patient. Bulldogs appear to be overrepresented with atopy - allergies to environmental allergens such as pollens, molds, dust, and dust mites, etc. Atopy is usually quite corticosteroid (triamcinolone, e.g.) responsive; not so a food intolerance, however. A food trial as mentioned above should be considered. I would also speak to his vet about the new cytokine antagonist oclacitinib which works as well as a corticosteroid but without a steroid's adverse effects. Oclacitinib is likely to revolutionize how we address atopic dogs.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.