Scientific Study: Sensitivity Intolerance & Diet Type

This study examined the source of food sensitivities and intolerances in a retrospective cohort of predominantly adult (98% of 523) Golden Retrievers (GR), generally healthy except for the presence of ongoing pruritus and/or gastrointestinal (GI) problems. Electronic data files of GR from January 2016 through December 2018 were analyzed. The dogs were divided into 4 subgroups according to diet type: commercial grain-containing kibbles (n =273; 52%); commercial or home-prepared raw diets without wheat, corn, or soy (n =133; 25%); commercial grain-free (n =79; 15%); or home-prepared cooked diets without wheat, corn, or soy (n =38;7%). Within the 4 diet subgroups, 24 ingredients were tested and ranked for food reactivities based upon the test results. Of the 24 ingredients tested, turkey and white-colored fish were the most reactive (54–60%), followed by venison and corn, including cornstarch (44–48%). The lowest reactive foods were lamb and those that caused no reaction (11%). It was concluded that among generally healthy, adult GR, the ranking of 24 identified reactive food ingredients was the same across the 4 diet subgroups, indicating that diet type is not the determining factor for food sensitivities or intolerances in GR. Whole blood or plasma taurine concentrations were measured in a subset of dogs (n=22) fed grain-free diets. The results were normal or modestly elevated.


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