Over-the-counter hypoallergenic diets contaminated with proteins from other meats

In a recent study, 75 percent of OTC venison diets were contaminated with soy, poultry and/or beef, although their labels listed none of these ingredients.
This study evaluated four over the counter venison dry dog foods available from one on-line retail vendor for potential contamination with common known food allergens: soy, poultry or beef. An amplified, double sandwich type enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) test of soy, poultry and beef proteins were performed by an independent accredited food laboratory. The ELISA test for poultry protein was found to be unreliable when testing in dry dog foods because false negatives occurred. ELISA testing of control diets for both soy and beef proteins performed as expected and could be useful in antigen testing in dry dog foods. Three of the four over the counter (OTC) venison canine dry foods with no soy products named in the ingredient list were ELISA positive for soy; additionally one OTC diet tested positive for beef protein with no beef products listed as an ingredient list. One OTC venison diet was not found to be positive for soy, poultry or beef proteins. However, none of the four OTC venison diets could be considered suitable for a diagnostic elimination trial as they all contained common pet food proteins, some of which were readily identifiable on the label and some that were only detected by ELISA. Therefore, if the four OTC venison products selected in this study are representative of OTC products in general, then the use of OTC venison dry dog foods should not be used during elimination trials in suspected food allergy patients.
J Anim Physiol Anim Nutr (Berl). 2011 Feb;95(1):90-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1439-0396.2010.01016.x. Epub 2010 Oct 29.
ELISA testing for common food antigens in four dry dog foods used in dietary elimination trials.
Raditic DM, Remillard RL, Tater KC.
MSPCA Angell Animal Medical Center, 350 S. Huntington Ave., Boston, MA 02130, USA.