Did you know that dogs are outnumbering kids in the U.S. as family members? Not only are we adding four-legged friends to the family, our beloved family members have gained a recent level of importance generations prior did not have. For example, in a recent survey 81% consider their dogs to equal in status to children. So, with our all the data around celiac disease and gluten-free diets, it begs the question, should pets be gluten-free too? Pets can’t really tell us when something is wrong with them, we have to make sure we pay attention to our pets to them to see if changes in their diets affect their well-being.
Should pets be gluten-free as well?
There are some things that pets endure that we may think is due to allergies or other issues, but some of the symptoms you may see in your pets may be due to their diet and the ingredients that are in the food they are eating. Some symptoms you will want to look for in your pet that may indicate they need to be on a gluten-free diet are: inflamed skin, bald patches, itchiness, scabs and sores, hot areas on their bodies, and excessive hair loss. The same thing that happens in humans happens in pets when they are gluten intolerant. Their digestive system is affected due to the gluten.
Pet owners that need or choose to have a gluten-free diet may want to serve their pets the same type of diet they are on. If you are gluten intolerant and you have a pet that you’re feeding food that has it in the ingredients, if the pet licks your face, or is close and around you it may really affect you. And the same is true in reverse… if your pet needs to be gluten-free and you aren’t you could affect your pet by consuming gluten or having products with it in them in your home.
Your pet should definitely be on a gluten-free diet if they have any of the above symptoms, but even if they aren’t showing any symptoms it may still be needed. There are some breeds that you may find are gluten intolerant; it is great to look into the breed of your pet to see if they are on the list of animals that this can happen to. Also, as with any changes in diet, we recommend you consult a professional – in this case, your vet – about what may be best for your pet.
Is your pet on a gluten-free diet? We’d love to hear about your experience. Join in on the conversation on our Facebook page.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. All material provided on this Site is provided for information purposes only. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified health care provider with any questions you have regarding a medical condition in your pet.