My 2c about the Dodds thing....
step up on soapbox...
I think that sensitivities are valid and important and removing them can make a world of difference for some dogs. However, I don't think that removing the sensitivity actually fixes what is going on in the body. Sometimes that might be all that's needed, but if more sensitivities are developing, then that says that there is something more systemic going on and the root of the issue isn't being addressed.
Where I greatly disagree with Dodds is how she downplays the validity and importance of food allergies, which is a different biological process than food sensitivities. She sells a sensitivity test which is test via saliva. Food allergies are tested by blood, and then challenged by diet, though both are imprecise for a variety of reasons.
I believe that food sensitivities occur along with allergies. Ongoing allergic response creates a cycle in the body which may increase the chances of creating new allergies, and maybe new sensitivites though I don't know much about their overlap. Allergies are complicated because a person isn't just allergic to one thing, there are families of things, and also cross-reactions. For example, an allergy to a specific fruit(?) may cause a latex allergy, etc. A pea allergy may be a sign that there is a problem with more of the legumes (jazz here can't even have vanilla yogurt - took me forever to figure out that vanilla is a bean *duh*). But it's all based on the individual and their individual immune system.
I also don't believe that environmental allergies and food allergies exist independently - there are lots of interactions between food allergies and pollen, as an example. Also important is that managing one allergy might decrease the allergic load of one bucket, then the body can better handle the allergens that are left attacking the system. For example, Jazz is on oral allergy shots (liquid drops given daily) for environmental allergens, and it greatly helped her problems with foods.
So I think focusing on only sensitivities is very limiting and it makes me angry that Dodds has done this.
Right now there is all sorts of buzz about histamine and mast cell disorders, and even studies about which probiotics are best for these things, which are worse. These underlie allergy issues, I do not know how they relate to sensitivites. My recollection (and I haven't looked at this in a LONG time), is that sensitivities are not related to histamine issues.
I do not know how allergies and sensitivities affect each other, and I wish that were the study that Dodds would do. For example, if you decrease the allergies, do the sensitivities decrease? Does it work the opposite way? As much as I have looked, I haven't a found that she has done a sensitivity vs allergen study and that would be very helpful, but maybe not as profitable.
For all three of my dogs that I've used allergen testing and it has helped each of them greatly. They were not able to handle any of the really bad things on the lists, but the more moderate things they could handle once in a while, and the borderline things had to be challenged. My current preferred test is through Spectrum: http://www.vetallergy.com/veterinarians ... /platinum/
, though I know there are others out there that I haven't used that are probably good. I used VARL for Indy and it just doesn't contain the same amount of stuff as spectrum does so it's not as cost efficient. I did have a vet set the Spectrum for Jazz up for me at cost, so it was reasonable. I think otherwise the clinic would have charged about $350 for it. This was about 4 1/2 years ago.
As for Lady, I'm sorry that this is so difficult getting her comfortable :-( Towards the end when Max was very ill he was also very itchy. I used scullcap and that kept it in check. It seems to increase Jazz's liver values so I couldn't use it on her, which is probably good, since she's young and it forced me to dig deeper. Max did fine on it, though it will make them sleepier. Max's spectrum test showed he was allergic to cotton. Cotton. Who the heck is allergic to cotton? Everything I had him laying on and around the house was cotton....
This itchy dog thing can be very frustrating. Best of luck, I hope you can find the right path.