Dog News

What’s the Best Dog Food for Pooches with Allergies?

by Lilly

Life With Dogs is reader-supported. We may earn a small commission through products purchased using links on this page.

Sharing is caring!

Allergies are a problem that not only affect humans but our canine companions too. Furthermore, allergic reactions can take many forms. The changing seasons may see us sniffling and sneezing while our furry friends manifest their symptoms in other ways. Their allergies may present as listed below but also have further risk of secondary bacterial or yeast-related skin infections that can give them sores and hair loss.

  • Inflamed skin including redness
  • Constant scratching caused by dry skin
  • Inflamed and itchy ears
  • Scabbed or blistered skin
  • Ear infections
  • Wheezing and/or sneezing
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Constantly licking or chewing at paws or skin

What Causes Allergies in Dogs?

An allergy is an immune response to a substance that has interacted with the dog in some fashion. Your pup’s body understands that this substance is foreign, or a threat and the immune system ramps up to push back. Overall, animals, in general, are better at combating environmental allergens but this isn’t always the case. A pup may inhale, eat, or simply touch an allergen which then means their system reacts and tries to get rid of it. Their immune system goes into overdrive leading to irritated skin, runny eyes, a shaky digestive tract or respiratory issues. Allergies typically become noticeable after a dog is two years old and can be caused by the following:

  • Pollen from plants, trees, and grass
  • Spores from mold
  • Dust mites
  • Feathers
  • Dander
  • Smoke
  • Perfumes
  • Cleaning products
  • Fabrics
  • Rubber
  • Tick and flea preventatives
  • Pet shampoos

Around 10% of the allergies your pet encounters may be triggered by food. Some of the most common allergens for dogs are regular meat, dairy, eggs, corn, soy, and wheat. Eliminating these and watching for others is the start to a more comfortable pup.

What Brand of Dog Food Is Best for Dogs with Allergies?


There are lots of dog food products on the market that have been created for dogs with allergies. Before purchasing one, find out what you should be looking for by having your dog assessed by your veterinarian. Finding out what is up with your pup could be achieved through an elimination diet, where you remove items from his diet until he starts to feel better. However, this only works for food-related allergies. Allergies don’t present the same in dogs as in humans, so your vet’s input is important. If it is determined that your pup does have allergies, then talk to your vet about good foods they suggest and do your research. A limited ingredient diet (LID), also known as an elimination diet, works well. This means that the food has a simple list of ingredients and its use helps to determine what is the actual product that is causing your pet’s allergic reaction. By eliminating possible allergens, you can then purchase food that works for your pup. By looking for new/different sources of protein and carbohydrates, you will be able to give your dog a menu that will hopefully alleviate the product they are having food sensitivities too.

Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Dry Dog Food with Real Lamb

This diversified brand of dry dog food is great if you are looking for a product to help in the alleviation of allergies in your dog. This is a high-protein, grain-free, freeze-dried, raw food product is based on a limited ingredient diet. It offers one source of protein that is a little different than the usual ones that can trigger allergies. Lamb, rabbit, or turkey combined with peas and tapioca part of this simplified food. It also has a blend of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for healthy skin and coat. This is an added bonus if your pet’s allergy is causing dry and itchy skin. Overall, grain-free dog food is a great diet food option as part of your dog’s diet.

Wellness Simple Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Salmon & Potato

This holistic brand of dog food offers quality ingredients without adding unnecessary ones. Their “Simple” line of products offers LID diet food that will help your dog. They have six different offerings with four of them being grain-free offerings. This particular recipe has one protein source of salmon along with easily digestible carbohydrates without fillers and additives. They have the added benefit of pre and prebiotics and to help digestion and flaxseed to help skin. It is a high-quality dog food that your pup will surely love.

Blue Buffalo Basics Limited Ingredient Grain-Free Salmon & Potato

Blue Buffalo products are created with an idea that ingredients are fresh, natural high-quality ingredients. They have one source of protein with digestible carbohydrates supplements that include vitamins, minerals, and anti-oxidants. This particular food has salmon as its primary protein with potatoes to go with it. It has glucosamine for joint support. Calcium and phosphorus for bones and teeth and omega-3 & 6 to promote healthy skin and coats.  

Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Sweet Potato & Venison Grain-Free

This pet food formula is great for dogs with allergies as it is another Limited Ingredient Diet. They use scientific basics and nutritional information to create their recipes using high-quality meat, complex carbohydrates, and fruits and vegetables. They use unusual proteins such as venison, bison, duck, and wagyu beef to move away from possible allergens. This particular recipe highlights venison with sweet potato to create a LID product that has the added benefit of antioxidants and flaxseed.

American Journey Limited Ingredient Grain-Free Salmon & Sweet Potato

This different mixture of limited ingredients is a great start for your pets LID diet. Its single protein is real, deboned salmon with digestible carbohydrates. It has flaxseed and sunflower oil offering omega-3 and 6 fatty acids. This recipe not only can help allay the symptoms of allergic reaction but can also contribute to repair of dry and itchy skin and rough coat.


Allergies not only are irritating for your dog but can also lead to secondary issues that threaten their quality of life. Serious skin problems, respiratory and digestive issues can grow and affect their well-being. Furthermore, food allergies can be even more problematic when compared to environmental as they can affect your pup’s ability to eat and digest food and retain the proper nutrition from whatever food they ingest. Allergy-friendly brands of dog food are a great way to not only offer your dog a little relief from allergies without medication but to also give them a healthier diet overall.