Autoimmune Diseases

Autoimmune Disease

Immune Problems

An Autoimmune DIsease Refers to the Immune System mistakenly attacking one's own body. This can be specific to one type of tissue or generalized.

How it affects pets

Autoimmune diseases can be life-threatening in some cases, depending on what organ or system of the body is affected. Autoimmune disease can take many forms; affecting the skin (Pemphigus), the blood (hemolytic anemia, Immune-mediated thrombocytopenia), the joints (Arthritis), the digestive system (IBD) the adrenal glands (Addison’s), or many systems of the body at once (Lupus). The immune system’s attack on the body tissues can result in the breakdown of tissue, inflammation, pain, and vulnerability to pathogens.

The liver and kidneys can become adversely affected by common treatments for autoimmune disease. The liver can become easily overwhelmed and may find it hard to repair damage as fast as it occurs. Support of these organs is important.


There are many theories but as of yet, no one certain cause is found for autoimmune diseases in dogs. It is possible that some may be triggered by such things as vaccines, environmental pollutants, preservatives in food, chemicals, viral infections, stress, allergies, excessive use of corticosteroids and/or antibiotics, and genetics.

What types of foods do holistic vets and Dr. Pasternak recommend for autoimmune disease?

  • Raw Food Diets are highly recommended by Dr. Pasternak.

  • Choose a minimally-processed, wholesome food that is free of chemicals, preservatives, hormones, antibiotics, and other toxic substances.

  • A diet free of common allergens such as glutinous grains may help the digestive system remain in balance. Many prescribed medications for an autoimmune disease can have adverse effects on the gut. Consider an elimination diet.

  • Choose a diet that helps your dog maintain a normal body weight and condition.

  • Choose a diet that provides plenty of antioxidants (combat free radicals), and all essential nutrients from as many fresh foods as possible.

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