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Understanding How Different Proteins (Meat) Affect Your Dog’s Allergies

Understanding How Different Proteins Affect Your Dog’s Allergies

Did you know, that feeding different types of proteins can change your dog's response to allergens? Allergies are often a sign of disharmony in the body, and changing your dog's diet can help restore balance.


“Yin” symbolizes cooling, fluids, calmness, and passive behaviour, while “Yang” symbolizes heat, inflammation, outward energy, and aggressive behaviour.

A healthy animal maintains a perfect balance between these two forces.


In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), any imbalance between Yin and Yang is considered a disease. Allergies are often viewed as an excess of Yang (heat) in the body, leading to allergic hypersensitivity.


Aligning Energetics with Food Allergies

The concept of energetics in food refers to the inherent heating or cooling properties of different foods, which can affect the body’s balance. In Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM), food energetics is used to align with a dog’s specific health needs:


  • Warming Proteins: Suitable for dogs with a cold constitution, indicated by symptoms such as lethargy, seeking warm places, and cold extremities. However, warming proteins can worsen conditions in dogs with a hot constitution, leading to increased inflammation and allergic reactions.


  • Neutral Proteins: Generally safe for all dogs, providing a balanced approach without strongly affecting the body's temperature regulation.


  • Cooling Proteins: Ideal for dogs with a hot constitution, indicated by symptoms like restlessness, seeking cool places, and hot skin. Cooling proteins help reduce inflammation and are beneficial for dogs with allergic reactions and skin issues.


Snapshot of Common Proteins for Dogs, Their Energetics, and Allergies

Here’s a quick guide to different types of proteins commonly fed to dogs, their energetic properties, and how they might impact your dog's allergies:


  1. Chicken

  • Energetics: Warming

  • Notes: Chicken is a popular and easily available protein. However, some dogs may develop allergies to chicken, so it's important to watch for any adverse reactions. Its warming nature can be beneficial for dogs with a cold constitution but might aggravate those with a hot constitution, potentially leading to increased inflammation or skin irritations.

  1. Beef

  • Energetics: Neutral

  • Notes: Beef is another common protein source. Its neutral energetics make it suitable for most dogs unless they show signs of specific allergies. If a dog is allergic to beef, symptoms like itching, ear infections, or digestive issues may appear.

  1. Lamb

  • Energetics: Hot

  • Notes: Lamb is often recommended for dogs with food sensitivities, as it's less likely to cause allergies compared to chicken or beef. Its warming properties can be beneficial in colder climates or for dogs that tend to feel cold. However, in dogs with a hot constitution, it may exacerbate conditions like skin redness, hot spots, inflammation and allergies.

  1. Fish

  • Energetics: Cooling

  • Notes: Fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation. Its cooling nature makes it suitable for dogs that suffer from inflammation and allergic reactions. Fish can be a good option for dogs with food allergies, providing a hypoallergenic protein source.

  1. Duck

  • Energetics: Neutral to Cooling

  • Notes: Duck is considered a novel protein and is less commonly used in dog food (kibble), making it a good alternative for dogs with allergies to more common proteins. Its neutral to cooling properties can help balance the dog and alleviate allergic symptoms.

  1. Turkey

  • Energetics: Neutral

  • Notes: Turkey is similar to chicken but has a different protein structure, making it another option for dogs with chicken allergies. Its neutral energetics make it broadly acceptable and unlikely to cause an allergic reaction.

  1. Rabbit

  • Energetics: Cooling

  • Notes: This can be a good choice for dogs with multiple food sensitivities. Its cooling nature can help with inflammation and heat-related issues, making it suitable for dogs with allergic reactions. Rabbit is also a good choice when doing an elimination diet however it can be costly.

Feeding your dog a variety of proteins can help manage allergies and ensure they receive a balanced diet especially when feeding a raw diet! Always monitor your dog for any signs of allergic reactions when introducing new proteins.



Information Table
Proteins Hot-Warm-Neutral-Cool

For more detailed information:


Huisheng Xie and Aituan Ma titled "TCVM for the Treatment of Pruritus and Atopy in Dogs" in the American Journal of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (August 2015, Vol. 10 Issue 2, pp. 75-80).


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