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My 1 yo boy Zuko had his wellness exam and vaccine appointment today. Needless to say He's not happy about that....the vet found he had a beginning ear infection (ill be giving him Zymox drops to clean ears 1x/day for the next week) and allergies (he has itchy, red, inflamed paws that he's been nibbling/licking at)...she recommended giving him 50mg of benadryl twice a day to see if that helps. (Otherwise it's expensive allergy shots)


With no changes to his diet (Instinct grain-free Raw boost beef with occasional lamb, salmon, beef, or chicken toppers just like his sister gets), environment, etc...would it be worth it to get him allergy tested? If it's a food allergy I'd hate to be feeding him something that's making him feel bad at the same time giving him medicine to tamp down the allergic response.(vet said to try the benadryl for a while to see if it helps before switching his food) Or if its something outside, making sure I keep him away from it.
 

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I'd do what your vet suggests and try the Benadryl first. Then you will at least know whether it is an allergy, albeit not what he is allergic to. I'd then eliminate common triggers before testing - grain, as you have already done, but check any treats; then chicken. A surprising number of dogs are chicken intolerant. You could also wipe his ears with a damp cloth after he has been outside. Then, if his ears are still bothering him, that's when to revisit the idea of testing.
 

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This article may be helpful: Research Update: Testing for Food Allergies – Clinical Nutrition Service at Cummings School (tufts.edu)

I have recently been through this with my lab mix, it took a good part of a year to get it sorted out. Benadryl did help to minimize the discomfort/itching but he continued to get worse, and we did end up giving him Cytopoint injection twice, (it worked very well for him for about 3 months) while I worked to figure out what was causing the issue.
What worked to resolve the issue for my dog, as was suggested by my vet, was doing a 'feeding trial' on a limited ingredient dog food, (a food with as few ingredients as possible) one protein source (using a protein that was new to him) and one carbohydrate source (I used First Mate (limited ingredient) brand). To do a 'feeding trial' the dog needs to be on that new food solely, for a period of eight to 12 weeks (nothing else fed other than items that matched the ingredients in the new food (for example: if the food was lamb protein, only lamb was given for treats) (Be sure to eliminate anything with 'flavoring' and any supplements that may be being given as well)

Not suggesting that you should disregard your vet's advice, but a 'food trial' is something to consider for the future.
 
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