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Dogs and Wheat Allergies

Updated on September 28, 2017

My Two Newfoundland Dogs


Determining if Your Dog Has an Allergy Can Be Tricky

Below I will explain how we found out that both our dogs have an allergy to wheat. At first we thought that it was possibly fleas, but through trial and error we found out the culprit was wheat.

No one likes to see their pets suffer with any kind of health problem no matter how small it may seem. After talking with our veterinarian we went with the food elimination route to determine if the constant scratching was due to something in their food. After a few months the dogs got relief and their dry scabby skin returned to normal.

Photo Source: All photos in this article are the property of the author Susan Zutautas unless otherwise stated.

Brewer's Yeast for Flea Control - For Dogs and Cats

I purchase my brewer's yeast at my local health food store in a powder form. I find this is the least expensive way to buy it. You can purchase it in pill form as well.

Bath Time

Bruce getting used to the pool
Bruce getting used to the pool | Source

The Background Story on How We Discovered Our Dogs Had a Wheat Allergy

Is the Problem Fleas or Food?

One hot summer day a few years back my sons were bathing our two Newfoundland dogs in the back yard. This is the easiest way to give this giant breed a bath. This year we plan to purchase a larger pool since the dogs have outgrown the one in the picture.

We have a kiddie pool where each dog takes a turn standing in the pool while an adult hoses him or her down. Shampoo is applied, lathered, and then the dogs are rinsed with the garden hose. Keeping the dogs clean at this point while they dry is a challenge as all they want to do is roll in the grass and dirt. To put them in the house before they are dry is pointless as then we end up with a wet mess all through the house. We try our best to get them to stay on a nice grassy spot in the sun.

About two days after their bath we noticed that they were both scratching unrelentingly. After doing a full body search for any sign of fleas we found a few specs that might have been flea eggs, but we were unsure.

My husband insisted that the shampoo was never rinsed off properly but I was right there and knew that this was not the case.

We do not use any chemicals on our dogs for flea protection. What we do use is brewer's yeast powder. Each morning a little less than a tablespoon is mixed into their breakfast. This has always kept our dogs free of fleas. Maybe the fleas in our neck of the woods have become used to the flea powder and it no longer keeps them at bay. A call to the veterinarian was placed.

My vet is great because many times rather than have us bringing one of the dogs in he'll discuss certain things with me over the phone. This way it is free of charge. He was pretty that since we'd not found any live fleas on the dogs that it wasn't a flea problem but to put my mind at ease he suggested we try one application of Advantix. At the same time he also suggested it might be a food allergy.

After applying the Advantix we waited a week but the dogs were still scratching. Their coats had gone from a nice shiny black to a dull black. Back to the drawing we went on a search to find out what the heck was going on with these two.

Pools are great tools for doggy baths.

Not only do kiddie pools make the perfect bath for your large and giant breed dogs but they can be fun, and a great way for your furry family members to cool off as well.

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Changing and Introducing New Food Into Our Dogs Diet

Once we were aware that fleas were not the cause of all the scratching we made a trip to our neighborhood pet food store. After speaking with the owner of the store we chose a grain free dog kibble. The vet told me that may have to try several different kibbles before finding one that the dogs not only like but one that is free from everything causing their allergy if that is actually what the problem is.

Whenever you are changing a dog from one food to another it is always best to make the switch gradual. You can do this by mixing the new kibble in with the old kibble. Increase the amount each meal or feeding until the new switch over is complete.

Please don't throw the old kibble away as pet shelters are more than happy to take it off your hands.

It only took about two and a half weeks or so to notice that the dogs had stopped scratching, and I feel that we were lucky as the first grain free kibble we fed was successful.

Grain Free Dog Kibble - For dogs that have allergies to wheat.

There are many dog food companies and manufacturers that make grain free kibble.

Thank you for stopping by today. Please leave me a comment to let me know that you were here. Have a great day!

© 2014 Susan Zutautas

Does your pet have any allergies? - If so what are they allergic to?

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    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Mary, I had a cat once that was allergic to everything, even the outside. We had him on steroids for years. Then one day I decided to take him off the steroids and put him on a cheaper food. All his allergies disappeared. It was really strange. Of course we kept him inside the house all the time.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      My dog has itching problems but its allergies to something outside. I've changed his food (he's now on CORE Wellness) but it didn't matter. Once the cold weather sets in his itching stops.

      Great suggestions here Susan.

      Voted up, useful, and interesting.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Thanks Rebecca!

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 

      4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      I would never have thought about a wheat allergy. Good job of deducing. And your dogs are so handsome!

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @tazzytamar: Thank you!

    • tazzytamar profile image


      4 years ago from chichester

      Well done for figuring out what was going on! Great lens

    • WriterJanis2 profile image


      4 years ago

      Fortunately, none of mine have allergies. Thank goodness you finally found out what was going on.

    • Brite-Ideas profile image

      Barbara Tremblay Cipak 

      4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Mine doesn't that I know of, but I can't switch up her food - it changes her constitution if I do, so I'm careful about her food

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @anonymous: Bruce and Maggie started this whole allergy thing when they were 5. That's interesting to hear that your dog breaks out on the tip of his ears. Makes it easier to catch right away.

    • Susan Zutautas profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Zutautas 

      4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      @SteveKaye: It would be nice if our pets could say, Hey I have a slight headache, let me be :) Olivia Felini .... now there's a name!

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      My male GSP is allergic to corn. We discovered it as a puppy so he's been corn-free but if he gets something accidentally, he breaks out first on the tips of his ears.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Maybe, sort of, perhaps. Right now the vet has her (Olivia Felini) eating a special diet that seems to work. All the "problems" that she had have disappeared.

      I wish animals could talk to us so that we'd know what was happening in their lives.


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