How long after ingestion of food do the clinical signs of ACR appear?
The symptoms of a Food Allergic Reaction (ACR) can also arise within a few minutes of ingesting the antigen, but more often they manifest themselves in the first 24 hours and in any case within 10-14 days.FOOD INTOLERANCE DIAGNOSIS
When an Adverse Food Reaction is suspected, the diagnosis must always be based on the anamnesis (the examination of all those data that may be relevant for the diagnosis; such as places visited, animals with which the subject has come into contact), the symptoms and especially on the results of an elimination dietary test (privative diet).
All other tests, including serological tests, have proved unreliable at the moment.
The method of choice for the diagnosis of any adverse reaction to food is represented by the execution of a privative diet (elimination diet).This investigation can establish a relationship between the administration of certain ingredients and the appearance of certain clinical signs.
The principle on which a privative diet is based is that the animal should not have adverse reactions towards a food that has never been given to it.By limiting the animal’s diet to a single source of carbohydrates and a single source of protein never used before for a certain period of time, the clinical symptoms disappear and return with the reintroduction of previously administered foods.
Simultaneously with the execution of the privative diet, all secondary complications must be treated, if present, in order to allow a clinical evaluation independent of the variations induced by the new diet.
It will therefore be necessary to control external and internal parasites and treat the presence of any bacterial and / or yeast skin infections (Malassezia spp) or exfoliative dermatitis.
The cooperation of the owner is essential for the success of the dietary test. A single transgression of the prescribed diet can invalidate the test and the duration of the administration time of the privative diet will have to be recalculated from the beginning.
Particular attention should be paid to those animal products such as toothpastes, drugs and supplements that contain animal proteins to increase their palatability, edible toys based on buffalo skin, snacks, etc. which erroneously are not considered food and could therefore continue to be administered.
If other animals are present together with the allergic subject to be tested, they must be fed at different times or in different environments or all must be given the hypoallergenic diet.
Cats that have access to the outside must be kept indoors for the entire duration of the test. Dogs used to picking up food from the ground must be carried on a walk with a muzzle.Homemade privative diet
The first choice diet is the one prepared at home by the owner and consists of a single source of protein and one of carbohydrates that the animal had never taken before.For cats, usually only one protein source is chosen as these animals are usually unwilling to eat carbohydrates.