Ever since Jada was a little puppy, she has suffered from ear infections. We couldn't figure out what was causing her to itch and I figured it was an allergy or an intolerance to some kind of food. For years, I have kept Jada away from chicken, thinking that was the culprit, all the while trying to find a way to find exactly what was causing the problem.
A few months ago, Jada's itchiness started to get out of control. It seemed like it was episodic, but now she was wearing the cone of shame all the time.
ImmuneIQ takes a sample of your pet's hair and saliva and tests it against 125 food allergens and they send you the results via email. They also have an option for add-on tests for toxins, bacteria & viruses, and molds & fungus.
A few weeks later, I saw the product on Coupaw for 50% off! Yay! It didn't take too long for the test to come in. All I had to do was to collect Jada's fur with a hairbrush and collect saliva with a swab. When it was all done, I put it in the mail and waited.
It took a little under 2 weeks and the results were instant as I received a text and email with the results.
All food allergens:
Man, was I surprised at all the things Jada was allergic to! Chicken turned out not to be an issue, but after looking at products that I knew caused a reaction, I realized that the culprit was usually either peas or canola oil, I paid for the extra tests, and it came up with a lot of things that are just bad to have near your pet in general, like fire retardant, salmonella, bleach. I don't think that it was worth the money for them honesty. I did get a little bottle of itch relief spray though!
I was a bit confused by how they categorized the allergens. What exactly does 'neutral' mean? I emailed the company to find out...
"Hi Abby,Thank you for emailing the help desk! Allow me to help you interpret our assessment:The RED column indicates anything Jada should avoid, and means that in this moment in time these items create more toxicity than benefit. These things are building up a toxic reaction in Jada. Sometimes that is an allergy, sometimes it is a toxic reaction (example inflammation). So for example, in the case of a food,it will never create benefit and is not a good choice. We seriously recommend avoiding it. In the case of a toxin, that means it's a high enough level detected it's cause for concern and possibly a 90-120 day detox program or treatment or even drug in the case of a bacteria or fungus.YELLOW are a caution but unlike red, you may be able to get away with having it as an ingredient in a food you select.GREEN is good or ""not a problem"" of course. So in the case of a toxin, parasite, fungus, bacteria or virus assessment, green means these do not seem to be problems in your pet. Otherwise they would be in the yellow or red columns.Our standard of sensitivity is much higher than most allergy assessments. Most animals that have defined ""allergic reactions"" by other allergy tests are a very small percentage and can still be sensitive to a food, plant or toxin to name a few. For example, we know that additives in our own foods can often be toxic to us over time but not stimulate an allergic reaction or ""positive"" on a test. ImmuneIQ is an unique immunity assessment that is changing the way we look at and understand "allergic" pets. We believe this is a much broader approach to learning about what's happening with your pet's immune system.
ImmuneIQ Assessment gives you a starting point to determine and understand what is red, yellow, and green for Jada. It is not designed like other “allergy” tests that you will get at the veterinarian. ImmuneIQ assessment is designed to limit those things that are degenerating your Jada's system (RED), highlight the things that would enhance repair and regeneration (GREEN), and leave YELLOW as the things that neither hinder nor enhance so they can assist to balance out Jada's diet. Stop the reds, go with the greens, and yield to the yellows. ..."
After buying new food and categorizing the treats as 'Jada-safe' and 'not Jada-safe,' I saw a major change in her scratching. Her ears have become a lot better, except for the occasional flare up!
In a nutshell...
Pros: cheaper than other tests
Covers a lot of allergens
Quick and easy to use
A bit expensive for the everyday pet owner
The extra tests you can buy tests for things that are not good for pets anyway, like chemicals. But it is still good to know!