Frequently Asked Questions

Allergy Test FAQ


Allergy Test My Pet is designed to offer you an easy and affordable tool that will help you get to the bottom of your dog’s food and environmental sensitivities. This is not a test of the true allergens, which are rare. It is a test of the immunoglobulins in your dog which will react to the allergens being tested if your dog is sensitive to them. The test will offer you a complete report on everything your dog may be reactive to so you can alter their food or environmental exposure to the items they are sensitive to. Please read below for additional information.

Please make sure your dog has not taken any antihistamines at least 10 days prior to testing because it will affect their results.

Please see below for a list of FAQs. We will be adding to this list regularly as we answer more and more of your questions so if you don’t see what you are looking for here please ask us!


Allergy Test

Why should I test my pet for sensitivities? If your pet is suffering from itchy skin, rashes, gas, stomach pain and a host of other skin, stomach and even behavioral issues chances are they have sensitivity to a food or environmental factor. By learning which of these are affecting your dog you can easily change your pet’s diet and keep them away from the products they show sensitivity toward. Instead of masking your pet’s symptoms with expensive and often unhealthy foods and medicines it is best to get to the bottom of the problem and recognize exactly what is causing the issues and how you can avoid them. Many people find this is best route to ensure the well-being of their pet.

Is this an allergy test? Allergy Test My Pet, while called an allergy test is in fact not a traditional allergy test. Allergy Test My Pet was designed to report, with the highest accuracy available, the food and environmental intolerances your dog is reacting to. This is not to be confused with blood tests which measure IGE.

Tests that measure IgE are able to report true allergies. These are allergies which are much harder to prevent. Some of these types of allergies you may already be familiar with are peanut allergies in humans, or extreme reactions to bee stings.

What if my dog still reacts after I have followed all of your recommendations? We believe that if you are able to recognize and remove the allergens causing your pet to react you will see the symptoms decline. In some cases they can even disappear immediately. Please ensure you are keeping your dog away from the products they have shown a reaction to. Sometimes certain foods and supplements are buried deep in the list of ingredients in pet food. Make sure you are aware of these and alter your pet’s diet accordingly.

If your pet has a reaction to common environmental factors including certain types of grass or weeds common to your area there may be little you can do to prevent a reaction. In these cases we recommend working with your vet to find the best way to deal with these sensitivities

When will I receive my report? You will receive a full PDF report within 2 weeks of us receiving your sample.

How is the test performed? This test uses the proteins in your pet’s saliva to measure their sensitivities to around 100 common allergens. The kit comes with a saliva collection device and a set of easy-to-follow instructions to assist you in properly collecting your pet’s saliva sample and sending it back to us.

What does the AT My Pet Test check for? ATMP is designed to measure the intolerances and sensitivities in your pet using IgA and IgM measurements. This is recognized as the most accurate way to measure the sensitivities in your pet. These proteins are found in the saliva.

What are the differences between the classes of immunoglobulins in allergy tests? Immunoglobulins, also known as antibodies, are glycoprotein molecules produced by plasma cells (white blood cells). They act as a critical part of the immune response by specifically recognizing and binding to particular antigens, such as bacteria or viruses and aiding in their destruction.

These are further identified by isotypes and there are 5 major isotypes in mammals.

IgE has the role of allergic reactions, parasitic infections and hypersensitivity reactions. These are the true allergies often seen as immediate and sometimes tragic reaction to bee stings or peanut butter.

IgM, which is used in this test, is the first antibody built during an immune system response. The other immunoglobin used is IgA which works with invading pathogens as an immune response.

This test uses IgA and IgM to tell you your pet’s sensitivities to around 100 known allergens.

What are some of the symptoms of pet sensitivities? Common symptoms that may indicate an intolerance by your pet include: itching and scratching and redness in the skin, including consonant paw chewing and licking; ear itching, redness and soreness; gastrointestinal issues including gas, diarrhea, vomiting, bloating; hair loss and also wheezing. Other symptoms can include altered behaviors including excessive or aggressive behaviors.

Will you be adding more allergies to your database? We are actively working on adding more allergies to our testing algorithms. Please check the table below for the most up-to-date listings. If you suspect your dog has an allergy we currently to not test for, please read our section on Custom Testing.

How do I take the sample? When you order a kit you will be provided with a saliva collection device and a full set of instructions for collecting a saliva sample from your dog. You put the included cotton device in your dog’s mouth until the swab indicates enough saliva was collected. The saliva is then put into a small collection tube. The tube is then placed in the return postage-paid envelope and you need only drop it in the mailbox for processing.

Once we receive your sample you will have a full report within 2 weeks stating your dog’s reaction to all of the items we test for.

For custom allergy testing the steps are the same for collecting a sample and you will also be provided with instructions on sending us the sample of what you want us to test for.

A video showing how to take the sample can be viewed here.

How old should my dog be before I test? While this test can identify sensitivities at any age, a puppy's physiology quickly changes and the sensitivities they have under 6 months of age may completely change as they age. It is recommended that dogs be over 6 months of age to identify specific allergens that may affect them as they grow older.

Why is my dog sensitive to a particular item but not subsets of that item?We get asked this question regularly. Why a dog is sensitive to fish meal but not a particular fish or seafood or why does a dog react to chicken eggs and not chicken? This is because each item on our list is a unique allergen and a dog may react to one and not another. For instance fish meal usually contains fish trimmings from lower quality fish such as Pollock and does not contain Salmon or Tuna. It also has some chemical components used in processing and your dog may be reaching to those. Another example is a reaction to chicken egg and not chicken and this is because there is a difference in the proteins of each.

Why did my dog react to a novel item? From time-to-time we see a reaction to a particular item a dog has not come into contact with before. This reaction normally occurs because the dog has come in contact with the item but the owner is not aware. It may be a lesser ingredient in a dog food or treat currently fed or something fed in the past.

I am having trouble getting a sample from my small dog.Sometimes our collection device can be very challenging for smaller dogs. You don’t have to get the sample at once and you can keep trying. Please make sure when you do put your dog’s sample in the tube you see at least some saliva come through. Giving the dog water before may help.

I am not able to get the red dot to appear on my sample.If you think you have taken enough of a sample to get some saliva and you are not seeing the red dot on the collection device you can try and push through the saliva you have collected into the extra collection tube. If you see some saliva come through chances are there is enough there for us to be able to get you a good result.

Can my dog eat before I collect the sample? No, your dog should not be fed before taking a sample as this may affect the results. We recommend taking a sample first thing in the morning before they eat. If this is not possible we recommend waiting the longest possible period of time between meals to collect your sample.

Is it ok if my dog is on medication when I collect my sample? There are a number of medications that will affect your results and these include antihistamines and steroid drugs. If your dog is taking any of these please don’t collect a sample until they have been off them for 48 hours.

What is the difference between blood/skin allergy testing and saliva testing? Blood testing measures the IgG and IgE antibodies against an allergen. These antibodies can only be detected after fractionation of the blood into serum, which is an expensive and labour-intensive process. The skin prick tests have a similar principle of detecting IgE antibodies against an allergen, but the results are quickly obtained.

Both of these tests measure true allergies (i.e. anaphylactic responses) , whereas the type of testing we do using saliva test measures insensitivity.

Saliva samples used for our test measures IgA and IgM antibodies which are secreted by canine's bowel mucosal membrane in response to allergens affecting the dog. Measurement of these antibodies gives a direct correlation with insensitivities. We use the saliva-based testing because it is painless, affordable, accurate, and can be performed at a consumer level vs. a medical one. - German, A., Hall, E., & Day, M. (1998). Measurement of IgG, IgM and IgA concentrations in canine serum, saliva, tears and bile. Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology, 64(2), 107-121. doi:10.1016/s0165-2427(98)00132-9

Is there any research supporting this type of testing? Please read these studies about testing saliva for intolerances:

Measurement of IgG, IgM and IgA concentrations in canine serum, saliva, tears and bile BBetreff et al..

Jackson et al Evaluation of the clinical and allergen specific serum immunoglobulin E responses to oral challenge with cornstarch, corn, soy and a soy hydrolysate diet in dogs with spontaneous food allergy.

Bottcher et al Total and allergen‐specific immunoglobulin A levels in saliva in relation to the development of allergy in infants up to 2 years of age. .

Allergens covered in our test.
Please check back as new items are being added.
Alligator Almond Oil Ants
Apple Asparagus Banana
Barley Beaver Beef
Beet Bell Pepper Blue-Green Algae
Blueberry Broccoli Brown Rice
Brussels Sprout Buckwheat Buffalo/Bison
Canola Oil Carrot Celery
Chick Pea Chicken Chicken Egg
Chlorella Co-Q-10 Cockroach
Coconut Oil Cod Liver Oil Corn
Cottonseed Oil Cranberry Cucumber
Dairy Duck Duck Egg
Dust Mites Elk Feathers
Fish Meal Flaxseed Oil Fleas
Gelatin Ginger Glucosamine
Grains (Bread) Grass Grean Beans
Green Lipped Mussel Green Peas House Fly
Kale Kangaroo Kelp
>Kidney Beans Lamb Lemon
Limonene Mackerel Molasses
>MSM (Sulphur) Oat Olive Oil
Orange Ostrich Peanut Butter
Pear Pheasant Pollen
Pomegranate Pork Potato
Propylene Glycol Propylene Glycol n-Butyl Ether Psyllium
Pumpkin Rabbit Safflower Oil
Salmon Sardines Shrimp
Sorghum Soy Spinach
Squash Strawberry Sunflower Oil
Sweet Potato Tapioca Tobacco
Tomato Tuna Turkey
Turmeric Turnip Vegetable Oil
Venison Watermelon Wheat
Whey White Rice Yam
Yogurt Yucca Zucchini

DISCOVER!

  • Your dog’s unique intolerances and sensitivities for around 100 factors.
  • The common household and environmental factors affecting your pet’s wellbeing.
  • Which foods you should avoid—and which may be safe-- in your pet’s diet.
  • Food and environmental allergens to keep an eye on.
  • Plus, much, much more!

YOUR RESULTS INCLUDE:

  • A custom analysis of around 100 food and environmental items that your pet may have sensitivities to.
  • A list of foods and household products you should avoid including laundry and cleaning products, tobacco and other household items.
  • PLUS so much more!
DAllergy Test My Pet