Allergy Diets and Your Pet

For anyone who has ever experienced a pet with food allergies, you know just how frustrating it can be to find the right diet to suit your pet’s needs.

At Van Isle Veterinary Hospital, we often ask our clients to start their pet on a “Food Elimination Trial” to narrow down the cause of allergies or to at least help control them. Not all allergies are caused by what your pet eats. In the Comox Valley, it is just as common to see environmental allergies due to the region and climate in which we live. However, if it is determined that your pet is developing allergies from his diet, the next step is to try and rule out the culprit!

What is a Food Elimination Trial and why is it recommended?

The best way to diagnose whether or not your dog is suffering from an adverse food reaction is a food elimination trial. The purpose of a food elimination trial is to determine which ingredient is the cause of the symptoms and remove this ingredient. Food elimination trials are often difficult and time-consuming. However, they are crucial in determining the allergen source that is causing your pet pain and discomfort.

What are the DO’s and DON’Ts to ensure a successful outcome?

Do – Keep a journal of everything your pet ingests and any allergic reactions leading up to and during a dietary elimination trial.

Do – Continue with any medications your veterinarian has prescribed.

Do – keep your pet from eating the other household pets’ food and keep those curious canines out of the litter box!

Do – let grandparents, children, family, friends and neighbours know that they cannot feed your pet anything but the prescribed food. Absolutely NO people food.

Don’t – feed your pet anything other than your veterinarian prescribed formula. Any treats, chews, medicated flavoured tablets, dental chews etc. can interfere with results and lead to a reoccurrence of allergic symptoms. Even the use of pet flavoured toothpaste can cause a reaction!

Don’t – leave out food, garbage or other materials that your pet can reach and ingest without your knowing – this will interfere with the trial results.

Do – remain patient with your pet and your veterinary team. Food trials take time…. a few months of consistency is definitely worth your dog’s lifetime of comfort and improved health!

Do – contact us if you have any questions or concerns – we’re here to help!!

Submitted by Van Isle Veterinary Hospital (some info courtesy of Royal Canin)


Get a Cupcake and Support BC Animals in Need During Treat Week (Feb 24 - Mar 1, 2020)

Van Isle Veterinary Hospital is super excited to be hosting our 4th annual cupcake day fundraiser! BCSPCA celebrates “Treat Week” across the Province from Feb 24th – March 1st 2020 where business, pet owners and animal lovers can bake up a storm and sell treats with the proceeds going to BC animals in need.

Read More
See All Articles

Last updated: June 2, 2021

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we have made some important updates to our operating policies.


This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!

As you can imagine, we have a significant backlog of surgeries and wellness/vaccine exams to catch up on and we will be working hard over the next several weeks to do just that. We want to thank everyone in advance for your patience while we work through this. Although restrictions have been lifted, our health and safety protocols have not. It is important we continue to follow the guidelines set out by Worksafe BC and social distance our large team as much as possible. This means although we can offer these elective services, we are doing much fewer during the day than we were pre-COVID.


We are very excited to welcome you back into our lobby! We have put some important safety measures in place to help keep our clients and our team safe.


The use of our online store for easy ordering, payment and delivery of our pet's food, flea and tick medications. Orders over $100 can be delivered to your home for free! CLICK HERE


During the first 8 weeks of COVID, we were operating as a 24-hour facility to better serve our community and to maintain social distancing within our team. However, as the COVID-19 situation changes, so do we!

Our team of doctors felt it was important to get back to performing your pet's much needed regular services. In order to do so safely, we had to once again change the way we do business. 

As such, effective October 6, 2020, we will no longer be available for after-hours, on call services between midnight and 7:00 am. After-hours emergency care will be referred to Central Island Veterinary Emergency Hospital between the hours of midnight - 7:00 am. They can be reached at 250-933-0913.

We will continue to be available until midnight for your call-in, after hours needs.

Our regular hours of operation remain the same:

Monday - Friday: 8:00 am - 8:00 pm

Saturday & Sunday: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Thank you for your patience and understanding, and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Van Isle Veterinary Hospital