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Itchy DogAllergy symptoms occur when the immune system overreacts to the presence of a substance (an allergen) that’s not normally considered to be of danger to the body. When a dog is hypersensitive to one or more allergens, the body assumes it’s being invaded by something nasty and calls up the defense forces to neutralize the offending substance. Unfortunately, the release of histamine during this response produces unwelcome symptoms such as itchy, irritated ears, scooting, itchy feet, hot spots, breathing difficulties, and, in extreme cases, anaphylactic shock and death. Typical allergens include pollen and spores, foods, and flea and insect bites.

What Is Colostrum?

Colostrum, the “first milk” produced by mammals immediately after giving birth, contains a myriad of compounds which are involved in supporting the newborn infant’s immune system. They have a role to play in controlling the body’s response to potentially harmful outside invaders; that is, the mechanism that’s mistakenly invoked in those who’ve become sensitized to allergens.

What Are The Benefits Of Colostrum?

Colostrum can be taken as a supplement and can provide a huge range of benefits for dogs of all ages. Bovine colostrum, which comes from cows, is fully compatible for dogs and for other species too. It’s an old remedy that was relied on before chemical companies began churning out chemicals and antibiotics.

Gloria Dodd DVM states: “Today the orthodoxy is in a losing battle with the infective organisms that have the capability of mutating, producing antibiotic resistant strains, and growing at faster numbers than the drugs can kill. It will always be so- this is the genetic code imprinted in the organisms that assure their survival. This is the beauty of Colostrum- the organisms have no time to reproduce. Colostrum’s healing affects are multifaceted. I have become a believer and recommend it in all ill animals and people no matter what the cause, in arthritic, allergic and autoimmune conditions. I have found it has reduced my allergy expressions of migraines and psoriasis since I have been taking 2 capsules 3 xs daily.”

How Colostrum Works

Research has identified an ingredient called praline-rich polypeptide (PRP) as one of the main components of colostrum responsible for eliminating or improving the symptoms of allergies. It is also thought to be potentially useful for other autoimmune conditions. According to Staroscik et al, 1983 (Molecular Immunology, Vol. 20, No. 12, pp. 1277-1282), PRP has the same ability to regulate activity of the immune system as do hormones produced by the thymus gland. It can stimulate an under active system into dealing with disease causing organisms and it can also suppress an over active system that results from autoimmune disorders and allergic reactions.

PRP’s ability to reduce allergic symptoms is thought to be partly due to inhibition of the lymphocyte (white blood cell) and T-cell overproduction that’s normally associated with an allergic reaction. PRP may also assist in the creation of special cells (helper T-cells and suppressor T-cells) which suppress and switch off the immune response. Other studies have shown that PRP is highly anti-inflammatory, which helps to reduce the effects of the histamine that’s been released.

Bovine colostrum has also been shown to contain an array of antibodies to common allergens that can affect dogs. These antibodies are built up over time by the cows as they themselves respond to the allergens. When a dog ingests the antibodies contained in the colostrum, they remain on hand to assist in the body’s response to allergen exposure.

How Much Colostrum To Feed

Colostrum comes in capsules or in loose powdered form. It’s best fed on an empty stomach but can be fed with a small amount of yoghurt or broth. Gloria Dodd DVM recommends the following:

Recommended dosage is for one month minimum, then give as needed.

  • 1/3 teaspoon powdered form/25 # body weight twice daily or:
  • Small dogs and cats –1 cap twice daily
  • Medium to large dogs- 2 caps twice daily

For more information on the many uses of bovine colustrum, read this article by Dr. Stephen Blake DVM.


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    1. Janet

      I just found out my 8 month old 75 pound German Shepherd puppy has demodectic mange which is right now over one eye and a spot on the side of his muzzle of course i do not want to use the ivomec or the dip and i was reading about the bovine colostrum and wondering if that would be something i could use to treat him??

      • Dogs Naturally Magazine

        Janet, colostrum may help since it provides immune system support. We had a good article by Dr Jodie Gruenstern with a lot of good advice for Demodex in the May-June 2014 issue. The May-June issue can be purchased in print for $5.95 or digital for $3.95. If you would like it please email us at info@dogsnaturallymagazine.com
        This site also has some good information on demodex: http://happydognaturals.com

    2. Brenda Forden

      Shouldn’t the calves be getting this colostrum? How is it that there is such a plentiful supply of bovine colostrum?

    3. Margaret Lochki

      I grew up on a dairy farm in the70s , back in those days colostrum was discarded to the rearing of the poddy’s and the dogs bowl .
      My first ever bully was “reared on colostrum ” and was always available in the milk bowl of our dairy shed . Miss Piggy lived to almost 17 years old . She never was sick nor did she have arthritis , on top of that she ate calf poo and membranes of the cows that had given birth. There must be something in all of this that attributed to her long life

    4. Doris

      I get my bovine colostrum from the Lubrisyn Co. It’s liquid and is shipped to you frozen, Re-Borne. A wonderful product for my old dogs..

    5. gl

      It gives the dosage in the article if you read it

    6. I bought Bovine Colostrum at my local farm supply store. A bag (enough for at least a month) costs me $15.99. My dog weighs 50lbs. I mix it into some water and she licks it right up. I give her 1tsp. for every 20 lbs. (2.5 tsp. a day).

      • victoria

        be careful with feed store colostrum, its often preserved with chemicals like BHT/BHA or ethoxyquin. Better to get human grade like Symbiotics.

    7. SJC

      I actually had a weird response with Colostrum and another product I later gave. Based upon many articles I had read and info from the Mercola website, I started giving it to my cat Buddy, who suffers from severe year-long allergies. I won’t go into everything I’ve done… But it covers the gambit from western to Chinese, homeopathic… And yes, diet. Though that’s rather simplistic. Often, if allergic to one thing, it’s not uncommon to be allergic to multiple things. Especially if the allergies are severe. Anywho, gave the Colostrum for at least a couple of months, enough according to all reports to see if it was working, but he seemed to only get worse. Since it was Spring, I thought perhaps it was due to other factors and the Colostrum simply was not working. I discontinued as he was miserable, though I wasn’t certain at the time it was due to the Colostrum. I then tried another recommendation from Dr. Becker on the Mercola website when Colostrum was not enough, in the thoughts it might have something to do with immunoglobulin A deficiency. So tried giving Cytozyme-THY. I did so only after some research and even contacting the company. There SHOULD have been no bad side-affects from giving it to him. But he got so bad with “bumps” covering him from tip to tail, massive itching and was so miserable that he started doing like some animals do when sick or terminally ill/injured, by looking for isolated places to curl up and sleep, avoiding everyone all day. Needless to say I stopped the product (wasn’t 100% certain it was causing it), but in the next day I could see a difference, in the next 2 it was dramatic in his improvement. I don’t really know what I am recommending here, except to keep a careful watch when giving your animal ANY product, no matter how safe it is supposed to be. With Colostrum, I cannot see why it would produce any harmful side-affects… And yet it happened with my little boy. Then the side-affects continued to worsen as I continued, with one of the next “step” ups in treatment from Colostrum to the Cytozyme. If anyone has any ideas on why he had this reaction, please share with me, as perhaps it could help him out. I’m kind of stumped myself. :o)


        SJC – my understanding of allergies is that the animal, human has leaky gut from antibiotics, probably exacerbated by vaccinations. I’ve managed to get around the problem by feeding raw food that contains no carbs, just meat, offal and bones. my understanding of allergies comes from Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride, Guts and Psychology Syndrome.

    8. Lori

      Curious, if my dog suffers from seasonal allergies in the fall, when is it best to start?

    9. Danielle

      Where can I find colustrum? Thks

    10. Jarli

      Hey yes I have brought this for my dog he had suffered with lots of allergies and skin conditions and I have found it to be great I just buy it off eBay and search for bovine colostrum it’s great and deffinately works for my labrador

    11. were can I buy this please

      • Terry Contreras

        I just found a dairy where I can get colostrum for my dog. He has been suffering from a whole host of issues for the last year. Arthritis, fatty tumors, skin problems. I’ve been “Putting out fires” for this last year. He is 10 years old now and German Shepherd/Border Collie.
        I have hopes of this resetting his immune system. I’m just not sure how much to give him since this is the fresh/frozen product straight from a dairy. I started him with just less than a teaspoon so as to not shock his system. He loves it. I told him it was ice cream and evidently its as good as!

      • John

        Lyne This is an excellent source of Whole Colostrum by BodyBoost. They have both 150 ct caps and 16 oz bulk size. John

    12. charles

      How much is this and does it work for dogs with allergies?

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