NZ Pet Food Allergy Breakthrough
10 year US investment in Massey project pays off
A remarkable development in treating food allergies in dogs and cats has been achieved by New Zealand Veterinarian
Professor Grant Guilford and his research team at Massey University. The discovery promises to bring relief to literally millions of dogs and cats in over 62 countries around the world.
“To get an idea of the extent of the pet food allergy problem,” says Grant Guilford, “In New Zealand alone it is thought that something in the region of 68% of all dogs and cats sufferer from some form of food allergy. On a global scale the problem is vast.” Important enough for one of the world’s leaders in pet nutrition, US giant Hill’s Pet Nutrition, to fund the research into finding a better answer to the problem.
Professor Guilford explains that many allergies come from the most normal sources “In dogs for instance the most common causes of adverse reactions are beef, dairy products, wheat, chicken and pork. In cats it’s beef, dairy products, fish, wheat and chicken.”
Traditionally, pets showing allergic reactions have been shifted to foods they have not been exposed to before such as eggs, duck, salmon and whitefish. But in many cases they showed allergic reactions to one or more of these sources too. The owner then had to go through a tedious process of elimination to track down the source of the allergy.
This new solution allows protein sources, which had previously caused reactions, to be eaten with no ill effects. The project took over ten years to complete and has resulted in Hill’s international launch of a new ‘vet only’ range of foods called Prescription Diet®z/d®.
For owners whose pets suffer from such things as inexplicable hair loss, vomiting, diarrhoea, itchiness and poor coat condition this new scientific breakthrough offers the likelihood of a cure.
And for all New Zealanders it is the pride that comes with knowing that ingenuity and the ability to come up with global answers is alive and well in New Zealand.