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Diet Helps Caleb Conquer Food Allergy

Situation

Kate Battenfelder, DVM, has owned Caleb, an 11-year old Labrador Retriever, for nine years. While in college, Battenfelder and Caleb battled his chronic ear infections. He received many rounds of topical ear medications and oral antibiotics, but they provided only temporary relief. Three years ago, Battenfelder took Caleb to a veterinary dermatologist at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University for help with a six-month unresolved infection in one ear.

Strategy
Caleb had a ruptured tympanum, so the specialist sedated the dog for ear flushing and culturing, then treated him with an antibiotic and antihistamine-prednisone combination. He urged Battenfelder to run a food trial to determine if food allergies might be causing Caleb’s chronic ear infections. When the food trial indicated Caleb was allergic to chicken, the specialist recommended feeding a hypoallergenic diet. Battenfelder chose Purina Veterinary Diets® HA Hypoallergenic® Canine Formula.

Results
Caleb has not had an ear infection since starting on HA,Battenfelder reports. “HA has given our family peace of mind,” she says. “Caleb is no longer in constant discomfort, and we don’t have to go through the ear cleanings and medications that were such an unwelcome part of his life.”

Veterinarian’s View
Battenfelder recommends HA for her patients with food allergies. “It is always helpful to share personal experience with clients,” says Battenfelder. “I tell them that it is hard to conduct a food trial, but the rewards can be worth it. I explain how important it is to only feed the prescribed diet and how difficult it was to change my habit of giving my dog the last bit of food off my plate, but that having a happy, healthy dog is worth the change.”