The DOG FOOD TEST & General Dog Food Info

  
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♥Soph- ie Claire- CGC

I love to be- loved.
 
 
Purred: Mon Nov 9, '09 9:40am PST 
I have a question. Have any of you had any experience with the "holistic" dog food HALO?

Casey

I'm all over the- place...
 
 
Purred: Mon Nov 9, '09 11:32am PST 
No. It is supposed to be good. We use a Halo ointment and the powdered Vitamin C. Mom adds the "C" to our food.

We are limited on food choices since Shelby is grain free. Shelby and I are both doing well on the Vit. C powder. We've been on it for 2 weeks.

We find the treats to be expensive for the amount you get and what us big puppers consume...puppy

Tessa

You may- approach.
 
 
Purred: Wed Dec 2, '09 3:51am PST 
I saw this recently posted in the Yahoo! group 'K9Nutrition', basic information for the otherwise healthy dog who needs to gain weight.

Quote:

Question: How to increase calories without increasing carbs?

I'm trying to get my pup to gain weight- he's getting 3lbs/day of food (being fed 3 meals/day), based on the Christie Keith version of the Pitcairn recipe that I've had to omit sweet potato from due to yeast overgrowth- proteins include beef, buffalo, lamb, rabbit and salmon- substituting the sweet potato with kale and green beans, also whole milk yogurt and the supplements called for in the recipe. He can't tolerate grains. Any suggestions? Thanks

Answer from group moderator, Dr. Lew Olson

Fat is where it's at when it comes to calories. You might add eggs, canned sardines, feed fatty lamb and pork (if he can tolerate pork) and keep to the whole milk yogurt and cottage cheese.

[Tessa's note: for dogs that have skin issues caused by yeast infections, eliminate grain/potato carbohydrates from the diet]


Fitzcairn

Where's the- Ball?! Throw- the ball!!!
 
 
Purred: Sat Dec 5, '09 6:28am PST 
shockSaw this posted on the Cairn Rescue Mentoring site, you might be eating Ethoxyquin whether you like it or not! I have deleted the posters name for her privacy.

QUOTE
Ethoxyquin: RESULTS from Taste of the Wild Survey Submitted
Posted by:
Thu Dec 3, 2009 2hi50 pm (PST)

Here is the letter I received from Taste of the Wild. UGH!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Pam Libbert
Date: Thu, Dec 3, 2009 at 3:42 PM
Subject: RE: Taste of the Wild Survey Submitted

To: Dear

Thank you for completing the Taste of the Wild survey. We appreciate the time you have taken to provide us with your comments.

Taste of the Wild Pet Foods does not add ethoxyquin to any of the
formulas.

However, the coast guard requires fish meal to be preserved with
ethoxyquin and rightly so. Fish meal is a wonderful protein source full of essential Omega-3 fatty acids in the form of fish oils. But, that
fish oil content makes fish meal highly unstable, which is why the coast guard law exists. I believe the risks of rancidity, which are sick
dogs, aborted puppies, or even death far outweigh the risk of a few
parts per million of residual ethoxyquin.

Most of the ethoxyquin is destroyed in the cooking process, requiring other preservatives to be used. We apply natural tocopherols (Vitamin E) in order to carry the shelf life of the food. Tests for ethoxyquin are run routinely on Taste of the Wild products. The results are typically a few parts per million. The amount allowed, and considered to be safe, by the FDA is 75ppm.

Sincerely,

Pam Libbert
Customer Service Representative
Diamond Pet Foods

-----Original Message-----
From: tasteofthewildpetfo od@diamondpet. com
[mailto:tasteofthewildpetfo od@diamondpet. com]
Posted At: Wednesday, December 02, 2009 6hi55 PM
Posted To: TOW Surveys
Conversation: Taste of the Wild Survey Submitted
Subject: Taste of the Wild Survey Submitted

The following person has submitted a Taste of the Wild Survey.

Name:
Address:
Clovis, NM

Do you (or did you ever) feed the Taste of the Wild brand pet food?
Yes

Do you feed Taste of the Wild as your pets' only diet?
No

Do you feed Taste of the Wild as part of a rotation diet?
Yes

Which Taste of the Wild Formula(s) have you tried for your pet(s)?:
High Prairie Canine, Wetlands Canine, Pacific Stream Canine

Did (or does) your pet enjoy the Taste of the Wild brand pet food?:
Loved it

Comments on enjoying Taste of the Wild brand pet food:
My dogs love Taste of the Wild, but I am very concerned after reading that "all fish meal, ocean fish meal, and salmon meal ingredients are preserved with ethoxyquin." This is a carcinogin and I am very concerned about this. Right now my fur kids are eating the Taste of the Wild with Venison. I stopped feeding
them the salmon after finding out about the use of ethoxyquin. could you find something else to preserve your fish, fish meal with?

Why did you choose Taste of the Wild for your pet?:
Wanted a grain-free formula, My pet has allergies

Will you purchase Taste of the Wild brand pet food again?:
Yes

How did you learn about Taste of the Wild?:
Tried a sample

Data was sent in on Wednesday December 02nd, 2009 06hi54:42 PM

Tessa

You may- approach.
 
 
Purred: Wed Dec 9, '09 7:46am PST 
thinkingWell, Mom finally ordered us some "Red Desert Clay for Pets". She chose that brand because it touts a smaller particle size for better utilization.
Don't know that any benefits/results will be readily apparent. Info on clay says that if the body doesn't need a component, it will not be harmful and will leave the body.

Fitzcairn

Where's the- Ball?! Throw- the ball!!!
 
 
Purred: Wed Dec 23, '09 2:36pm PST 
thinkingA few days ago, our order of Red Desert Clay came in the mail. Ma let us examine the jar when she unpacked it and we just licked and nibbled at it! Makes ma think that there is something in there that we want!shock

Tessa

You may- approach.
 
 
Purred: Thu Dec 24, '09 5:37am PST 
This is a great article on the BENEFITS OF A LOW-GLYCEMIC DIET, may be especially good for dogs prone to seizures. I find it helpful to PRINT long posts like this, easier to read and can be kept for future reference.

From the B-Naturals online newsletter by Dr. Lew Olson, sponsored by B-Naturals health products.

QUOTE

Usefulness of Low Glycemic Diets
For Epilepsy, Hypothyroidism, Diabetes,
Allergies, Arthritis, Yeast Infections and Cancer

October 2006
By
Lew Olson,
PhD Natural Health, LMSW-ACP

Low Glycemic Diets

While the ailments Epilepsy, Hypothyroidism, Diabetes, Allergies, Arthritis, Yeast Infections and Cancer are very different, they do share something in common. Diets high in sugars and/or starches can affect these illnesses in a negative manner. As I wrote in my
online series on Canine Nutrition (from the B-Naturals newsletter from August 2005 to June 2006) dogs are carnivores and are designed to best utilize and digest animal protein and fat. The advent of commercial diets in the last 60 years has introduced large amounts of grains and starches. These foods are carbohydrates, which are sugars. Besides adding sugars to the diet, these foods add more fiber and bulk to the dogs system.

Sugar in turn, directly affects the blood sugar in the body. Canines are designed to make glucose from amino acids (proteins) which keep the blood sugar level in a canine’s body. This in turn, helps to keep blood sugar levels even. Feeding diets high in grains (wheat, corn, oatmeal, barley, amaranth and rice to name a few) along
with starches (potatoes, sweet potatoes, beets and carrots) cause blood sugar to rise and then fall. This type of action directly affects diabetes, can trigger epileptic seizures, create aggravation in joints in dogs with arthritis, affect thyroid conditions and lastly, offer energy to cancer cells.

As stated in all canine nutrition textbooks, no nutritional requirement is given for these types of foods for dogs.

The Waltham Book of Companion Animal Nutrition states, “There is no known minimum dietary requirement for carbohydrates”

For more information on Carbohydrates
in the Dog’s Diet:

http://b-naturals.com/Dec2005.php

With each condition listed below, be sure to get full treatment, diagnosis and advice from your veterinarian. The correct diagnosis under proper veterinarian care is the best defense to treat any ailment.

Epilepsy

While research has been done on a low carbohydrate diet for dogs with epilepsy, the results showed that these diets didn’t help. However, the research does not indicate the type of protein that was used or the nature of the diet (dry, fresh, cooked) and it
contained an extreme amount of fat. http://www.cvm.umn.edu/cic/completedstudies/Neuro/home.html

Also the diet was inconclusive, due loss of some participants (owners not complying) and a subsequent low number of dogs that completed the study.

Other factors that may precipitate seizure activity by feeding carbohydrates may be related to food allergies, gluten intolerance (found in grains) and lack of certain amino acids such as taurine lost by processed or heavily cooked diets. For more information
on this, read:

http://www.canine-epilepsy.com/healthydiet.html
on the section titled “The Possible Connection between Grains and Seizures”.

While the connection is uncertain, a fresh food diet which is medium to low fat, high in animal protein and low in carbohydrates is worth a try and may well help in some instances. Removing grains reduces the chance of gluten intolerance and also some
allergies. The animal protein will help provide all the amino acids a dog needs and a fresh food diet would offer more nutrients.

Diabetes

This is a complex issue in small animals, and the type of diabetes found between cats and dogs is different. Cats often have type II diabetes, while type I is more common in dogs. New research has indicated that higher protein diets are more effective for cats, but new research is showing this may be true for dogs as well:

http://www.vetcontact.com/en/art.php?a=1268&t

http://www .ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids =15023591&dopt=Abstract
(same article as above, but in abstract form)

“Diet in the prevention of diabetes and obesity in companion animals”

“Conclusion – Consumption of diets with low carbohydrate, high protein, and moderate fat content may be advantageous for prevention and management of obesity, impaired glucose
tolerance, and diabetes in cats and dogs. Use of low glycaemic index
carbohydrates and supplementation with carnitine, chromium, and vitamin A may also be advantageous.”

While studies on cats discuss that cats are carnivores and need protein, it is also true dogs are carnivores. It is thought the higher animal protein diets create more even sugar levels in the blood stream. And certainly a fresh food diet would provide optimum nutrition, offering a more easily digestible food with more bioavailable nutrients than processed foods.

Hypothyroidism

Dogs with low thyroid (hypothyroidism) can have issues with pancreatitis, until treatment with proper medications help bring thyroid levels back to normal ranges. These dogs also tend to do better on homemade diets that are low glycemic, medium fat and do
well on higher protein levels. For dogs with hypothyroidism, avoid goitrogenic foods. Cooking these foods thoroughly will negate this effect, but do not feed these as the majority of the diet: cabbage,
broccoli, turnips, rutabaga, mustard greens, kale, spinach, Brussels sprouts, peaches, pears, strawberries, cauliflower, potatoes or corn. Remember, fully cooking them renders them safe to consume for hypothyroid conditions.

http://www.suite101.com/lesson.cfm/18912/2313/3

Th is article also warns to avoid soy:

“Some experts contend that as little as 30 mg of soy isoflavones will cause trouble by competing with hormones for the same receptor sites on cells. Because of that, they can cause endocrine disruptions. The endocrine system may mistake the isoflavones for a hormone and not send out signals that the hormone needs
to be produced, which could be problematic if you already have lower than normal levels of thyroid hormone production.”

For more information on
pancreatitis: http://b-naturals.com/Jul2004.php

For epilepsy, diabetes and hypothyroidism, a similar diet would be used. This would include low fat, as these conditions are prone to pancreatitis (in epilepsy due to medications), high protein and low carbohydrate (and thus fiber). Both groups could benefit
from fish oil, for the omega 3 fatty acids, B complex vitamins, vitamin E and digestive enzymes (for aid with fat digestion). Carnitine, chromium and vitamin A may help with diabetes.

Here are some web sites that
list glycemic values of food:

http://www.lowglycemicdiet.com/gifoodlist.html

http://ww w.southbeach-diet-plan.com/glycemicfoodchart.htm

http://www.diabe tesnet.com/diabetes_food_diet/glycemic_index.php

These recipes listed below are low glycemic and reduced fat for dogs with Epilepsy (if on Phenobarbital or Potassium Bromide), hypothyroidism and diabetes.

The amount to feed is approximately 2% to 3% of the dog’s body weight. Basically this breaks down into this:

(one pound equals approximately two cups)

100 lb dog = 2 lb to 3 lb daily, or two meals of 1 to 1-1/2 lbs each
75 lb dog = 1-1/2 lb to 2=3/4 lb daily or two meals of 12 oz to 18 oz each
50 lb dog = 1 lb to 1-1/2 lb daily, or two meals of 8 oz to 12 oz each
25 lb dog = 8 oz to 12 oz daily, or two meals of 4 oz to 6 oz each

Smaller dogs often have higher metabolisms, and *may* (not always) need more than the 2% to 3% of their body weight, and often do better with three smaller meals a day, especially toy breeds.

** Puppies under the age of six months require more frequent meals (three to four a day) and need a bit more calcium, at about 1500 mg per pound of food served while they are growing. Puppies will eat about 10% of their body weight at 8 weeks of age or 2% to 3% of their anticipated adult weight

For supplements, calcium is needed at 900 mg per pound of food served. I would also recommend the EPA fish oil capsules at one capsule (180 EPA/120 DHA) per twenty to thirty pounds of body weight daily. Do not add minerals, as the variety in the diet will
provide this. Do add vitamins, such as vitamin E, vitamin C and a B complex. For diet changes, probiotics and digestive enzymes may be helpful. Berte’s Immune Blend contains vitamin C,
vitamin E, B complex, enzymes and probiotics. For a daily vitamin blend without enzymes and probiotics, there is also Berte’s Daily Blend that contains kelp and alfalfa which can provide trace minerals.

Sample Diet One

(one meal for a 100 lb dog, or two meals for a 50 lb dog, or four meals for a 25 pound dog)

- One lb low fat
hamburger, 4 oz beef liver or kidney
- 1 or 2 egg whites, no yolks, scrambled or soft boiled
- 1/2 cup steamed or boiled broccoli
- 1/2 cup cooked yellow crookneck squash
- 4 oz nonfat milk yogurt

Cook meat, eggs and vegetables and mix. When cooled, add yogurt.

To this, add:
- 1600 mg of calcium , or one teaspoon of dried, ground eggshell
- One teaspoon Berte’s Green Blend (for trace minerals)
- One teaspoon of Berte’s Immune Blend per 35 lbs of body weight
daily
- Add 1,000 mg of EPA fish or salmon oil per ten pounds of body weight daily

Sample Diet Two

- One lb white meat chicken with no skin, four oz of chicken liver
- 1 or 2 egg whites, no yolk, scrambled or soft boiled
- 1/2 cup steamed or boiled Spinach
- 1/2 cup cooked cabbage
- 4 oz nonfat Cottage Cheese

Cook meat, eggs and vegetables and mix. When cooled, add cottage cheese.

To this, add:
- 1600 mg of calcium, or one teaspoon of dried, ground eggshell
- One teaspoon Berte’s Green Blend (for trace minerals)
- One teaspoon of Berte’s Immune Blend per 35 lbs of body weight
daily
- Add 1,000 mg of EPA fish or salmon oil per ten pounds of body weight daily

Sample Diet Three

- One lb beef heart, cut into small pieces, 4 oz of pork or beef liver
- 1 or 2 egg whites, scrambled or soft boiled
- 1/2 cup steamed or boiled Bok Choy or Chinese cabbage
- 1/2 cup zucchini
- 4 oz non fat Yogurt

Cook meat, eggs and vegetables and mix. When cooled, add yogurt.

To this, add:
- 1600 mg of calcium, or one teaspoon of dried, ground eggshell
- One teaspoon Berte’s Green Blend (for trace minerals)
- One teaspoon of Berte’s Immune Blend per 35 lbs of body weight
daily
- Add 1,000 mg of EPA fish or salmon oil per ten pounds of body weight daily

Sample Diet Four

- One can 16 oz Mackerel or Salmon, drained and rinsed
- 1 or 2 egg whites, scrambled or soft boiled
- 1/2 cup broccoli
- 1/2 cup Kale or other dark leafy green
- 4 oz nonfat Cottage Cheese

Cook vegetables and eggs (no need to cook the canned fish, it is already cooked) and mix together. No calcium is needed as mackerel, salmon or sardines already contain soft, steamed bones for calcium content.

To this, add:
- One teaspoon Berte’s Green Blend (for trace minerals)
- One teaspoon of Berte’s Immune Blend per 35 lbs of body weight
daily
- Add 1,000 mg of EPA fish or salmon oil per ten pounds of body weight daily

The last health conditions of cancer, arthritis and allergies would use similar diets, but can use higher fats.

Cancer

Cancer cells use sugar found in the body for energy. So elimination of high glycemic foods is important, along with high quality animal protein sources. Higher fat is also recommended, to maintain weight and help with energy. More information on this can be found
here:

Nutrition for Dogs with
Cancer

http://www.b-naturals.com/Sum1998.php

Diets for Dogs with Cancer

http://b-naturals.com/Jun2004.php

Arthritis

The biggest concern for management of pain in arthritis is to try and reduce inflammation. Along with this is the need to keep a dog with sore joints lean. One way to achieve this is by avoiding grains and starches, which can be fattening. Vegetables from the
nightshade family, such as tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant and peppers are also to be avoided, as these are thought to aggravate inflammation from arthritis. EPA fish oil will also help as the omega 3 fatty acids found in fish oil help to control inflammation. Formulas with Glucosamine, Chondroitin and manganese can
help helpful to lubricate the joints, and help reduce inflammation. The Berte’s Flexile Plus is a good choice, and is made from human grade materials. The Yucca Intensive is an herbal tincture, and given at one drop per ten lbs of body weight WITH meals can help fight inflammation.

Allergies

These can be difficult to pinpoint, and often the biggest questions are:

-Is this an allergy?

-And if so, it is environmental or food related?

Frequent bathing and inspection of anything new in the home (carpeting, bedding, household cleaners, yard sprays, etc) will often help in determining an environmental allergy. But food allergies are more difficult, as most commercial dog foods contain
numerous ingredients. Food elimination diets are best, with a goal to reach a variety of foods, as sticking to a one diet will only lead to more food intolerance.

Home cooking provides a way to offer better nutrition, fewer ingredients that commercial foods contain and a way to control what your dog eats. With the recipe suggestions offered here,
you have a basis for a balanced diet (calcium to phosphorus, amounts of animal protein and fat) but can pick and choose the ingredients that best suit your dog. Never forget about variety, as dogs require this to obtain a good selection and balance of amino acids and nutrients. Feeding the same things over and over can result in allergies or lacking nutrients. Omega 3 fatty acids
found in fish can help with the coat and skin and reduce inflammation from itching and red skin.

Yeast

Yeast infections can often come with allergies, due to constant scratching and itching. Certain medications used to treat skin problems can encourage yeast growth. Yeast thrives when steroids are given. Antibiotic use tends to kill the beneficial bacteria, which in turn can cause yeast to grow without these present which
naturally help fight them off. Some of these symptoms imitate allergies, and often these two problems can ‘ping pong’ back and forth. A skin culture can often determine which problem is present. For more reading on yeast problems, go here: http://b-naturals.com/Apr2002.php

Yeast grows and thrives on sugar, so eliminating high glycemic foods from the diet can help. Probiotic Powder is also helpful in fighting a yeast overgrowth, as well as frequent bathings with an oatmeal based shampoo, and rinsing with a solution of half
white vinegar and water. Olive leaf Extract and Yeast and Fungal Tincture are also helpful to combat yeast. But a visit to your Veterinarian is the best way to determine if your dog has a yeast problem.

Here are four recipes that are helpful for all these conditions.

Cooked diets also need to offer variety, and large batches can be packaged into meal sized portions and frozen for later use. Feeding amounts are the same, approximately 2% to 3% of the dog’s body weight daily. For instance, a 100 pound dog would eat two to three pounds of food a day, a fifty pound dog would eat one to one and a half pounds of food daily, and a 25 pound dog would eat 1/2 pound to 3/4 pound daily. A cup is approximately 8 ounces or 1/2 pound, some dogs will do well on two meals a day, others may need three or four smaller meals a day.

Do not overcookthe meat, but rather cook lightly which will retain more of the nutrients. Butter can be used for cooking (unsalted butter for those dogs with kidney or heart problems), for flavor and palatability.

Sample Diet One
(one meal for a 100 lb dog, or two meals for a 50 lb dog, or four meals for a 25 pound dog)

- One lb regular hamburger, 4 oz beef liver or kidney, cook with small amount of butter - 1 or 2 eggs, scrambled or soft boiled
- 1/2 cup steamed or boiled broccoli
- 1/2 cup cooked yellow crookneck squash
- 4 oz whole milk yogurt

Cook meat, eggs and vegetables and mix. When cooled, add yogurt.

To this, add:
- 1600 mg of calcium , or one teaspoon of dried, ground eggshell
- One teaspoon Berte’s Green Blend (for trace minerals)
- One teaspoon of Berte’s Immune Blend per 35 lbs of body weight
daily
- Add 1,000 mg of EPA fish or salmon oil per ten pounds of body weight daily

Sample Diet Two

- One lb ground chicken, four oz of chicken liver, cook with small amount of butter
- 1 or 2 eggs, scrambled or soft boiled
- 1/2 cup steamed or boiled Spinach
- 1/2 cup cooked cabbage
- 4 oz Cottage Cheese

Cook meat, eggs and vegetables and mix. When cooled, add cottage cheese.

To this, add:
- 1600 mg of calcium, or one teaspoon of dried, ground eggshell
- One teaspoon Berte’s Green Blend (for trace minerals)
- One teaspoon of Berte’s Immune Blend per 35 lbs of body weight
daily
- Add 1,000 mg of EPA fish or salmon oil per ten pounds of body weight daily

Sample Diet Three

- One lb ground pork, 4 oz of pork or beef liver, cook with small amount of butter
- 1 or 2 eggs, scrambled or soft boiled
- 1/2 cup steamed or boiled Bok Choy or Chinese cabbage
- 1/2 cup zucchini
- 4 oz Whole Milk Yogurt

Cook meat, eggs and vegetables and mix. When cooled, add yogurt.

To this, add:
- 1600 mg of calcium, or one teaspoon of dried, ground eggshell
- One teaspoon Berte’s Green Blend (for trace minerals)
- One teaspoon of Berte’s Immune Blend per 35 lbs of body weight
daily
- Add 1,000 mg of EPA fish or salmon oil per ten pounds of body weight daily

Sample Diet Four

- One can 16 oz Mackerel or Salmon
- 1 or 2 eggs, scrambled or soft boiled
- 1/2 cup broccoli
- 1/2 cup Kale or other dark leafy green
- 4 oz Cottage Cheese

Cook vegetables
and eggs (no need to cook the canned fish, it is already cooked) and mix together. No calcium is needed as mackerel, salmon or sardines already contain soft, steamed bones for calcium content.

To this, add:
- One teaspoon Berte’s Green Blend (for trace minerals)
- One teaspoon of Berte’s Immune Blend per 35 lbs of body weight
daily
- Add 1,000 mg of EPA fish or salmon oil per ten pounds of body weight daily

Fitzcairn

Where's the- Ball?! Throw- the ball!!!
 
 
Purred: Thu Jan 7, '10 6:47am PST 
This excerpt rom Dr. Khuly's www.dolittler.com vet online newsletter gives an easy-to-understand breakdown of the good side/bad side of GARLIC and AVACADOS.

QUOTE
Here’s the scoop: Garlic (like all of its onion-y, allium-family members) can be toxic to a dog’s red blood cells (to cats, cows and horses, too). Affected animals’ red blood cells break down (hemolyze), leading to life-threatening anemias in some cases. Dark brown urine is the most common sign in these cases. Treatment typically consists of whole blood transfusions.

But here’s the good news: You have to consume LOTS of garlic to get there. We don’t know exactly how much and there’s plenty of debate as to how much is too much, but we do know this:

#1 The toxic principle in all alliums is the alkaloid, N-propyl disulphide.

#2 Among the alliums, onions contain the highest amounts of this compound. Garlic contains far less.

#3 Raw alliums are the biggest offenders since some of the compound will be inactivated by the cooking process.

#4 But given that relatively small amounts of raw garlic yield maximum flavor, it’s unlikely that our household pets would consume enough to sicken them. As such, we tend to consider garlic more of a theoretical toxicity than an actual risk.

#5 In fact, despite the distinct possibility that garlic could cause a problem if ingested in large quantities, I’ve never heard of a case. Though the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control lists garlic among toxic plants, it’s worth noting that my alma mater (University of Pennsylvania’s vet school) does not.

OK so how about the AVACADOS? Here’s an issue that seems to confuse everyone, including the toxicology powers-that-be. Though avocados are billed as pet no-no’s, several well-known brands of pet food and nutritional supplements tout the avocado fruit and its oil as beneficial ingredients. And they are. It’s the pit, skin and leaves of the plant that primarily harbor a toxin called “Persin” (known to cause vomiting, diarrhea and sometimes fluid in the chest). The flesh contains it too, but apparently in far lower doses.

Here’s what the ASPCA Animal Poison Control has to say:

“...avocado leaves, fruit, seeds and bark contain a toxic principle known as Persin. The Guatemalan variety, a common one found in stores, appears to be the most problematic. Other strains of avocado can have different degrees of toxic potential.

The safety profile of foods and other products formulated with avocado is a difficult question for us to answer definitively, because we do not know specifically how avocados are processed for these foods, what types of avocados are used, or what minimum dose of the toxic principle results in clinical effects. Therefore, we have refrained from making an overall assessment of the safety or toxicity of products that contain avocado.”

Taking a less equivocal view of things is Breeder’s Choice, the makers of avocado-containing AvoDerm pet foods:

“Dr. Art Craigmill, UC Davis, Professor and Extension Specialist in Environmental Toxicology has said that his studies and other research in the United States and Australia have shown that the problem of [avocado] toxicity is in the leaves and the pit of the Guatemalan variety; the avocado meat of the fruit and oils have not been shown to be toxic. AvoDerm Natural pet products do not utilize any Guatemalan variety avocados, nor do we use any leaves or pits of any variety of avocados for our avocado meal and oil.”

And then there's WebMD, with their equally unequivocal, 180-degree statement of fact:

"No matter how good you think the guacamole is, you shouldn't give it to your dog. Avocados contain a substance called persin. It's harmless for humans who aren't allergic. But it's highly toxic in most animals including dogs. Just a little can cause your dog to vomit and have diarrhea."

I know, it’s all very confusing––especially for someone whose dogs were raised on the fruits of the avocado orchard I currently live in (my twelve trees drop their produce for six full months of the year). Dogs eat avocados with impunity here in Miami. They love nothing better than to play a round of catch with the pits. And we never noticed any signs of toxicity. So maybe it’s the variety. Or maybe it’s the fact that they discard the pits and peels (they mostly eat around the peel, somehow, and rarely munch deeply into the pits).

Shelby

Ready to go!
 
 
Purred: Thu Jan 7, '10 8:01am PST 
Thank you, Tessa! Mom made a copy of the garlic info for her co-worker. Her pup got sick after getting in the trash and the vet said it was probably garlic, but there was very little garlic in the trash. Mom told her friend that she thought it was something else....ended up being UTI!!!!

I do a little doggie dance and I want to taste an advacado so bad, but mom has been afraid to give me some. Dean Koontz used to give Trixie some dip and she loved it.

Fitzcairn

Where's the- Ball?! Throw- the ball!!!
 
 
Purred: Fri Feb 5, '10 5:41am PST 
Ma saw this in the B-Naturals online newsletter, quick way to get a handle on how the "glycemic index" stuff affects us doggers.

Feeding Vegetables

By Lew Olson • July 2005 Newsletter

Many questions and concerns come up with the topic of vegetables. I will try and outline what vegetables are most useful in diets, how to prepare them, and also discuss a bit about whether they are useful or not.
As the popularity of raw diets and home cooked diets have grown, people often wonder about adding vegetables to a dog’s diet, and how much to use. There are many diets out there, how-to books, and so much advice on the internet that it can get confusing. In this newsletter I will present some information on vegetables to help you make your own decisions.

Feeding vegetables may not be entirely necessary, but they can offer benefits of fiber and calories in home cooked diets and they may offer some useful nutrients in raw diets. Bones in raw diets can give the bulk or ‘fiber’ needed for firm stools, but since cooking bones are not an option for home cooked diets, vegetables can help with bulk in diets not using whole or ground bones.

Types of Vegetables

For feeding dogs, I will divide vegetables into two categories. These will be starchy and non-starchy vegetables. They are also called high glycemic (sugars) and low glycemic. For dogs, we generally like to stick to the non starchy varieties. High sugar vegetables can cause weight gain, gas, yeast problems and larger stool volume.

Low Glycemic Vegetables Include
Dark leafy greens
Summer squash (such as zucchini and yellow crook neck)
Broccoli
Cabbage
Cauliflower
Brussels Sprouts
Green Beans
Cucumber
Celery

High Glycemic Vegetables Include
Carrots
Winter Squash (hard rind squashes)
Green Peas
Potatoes (very high)
Parsnips
Rutabagas
Corn
Beets
Sweet Potatoes (moderate)

Use mostly vegetables from the low glycemic list for best results.

Preparation
Dogs have difficulty with fermenting and breaking down of vegetables, so we try to prepare vegetables to allow them to be utilized as fully as possible. This is achieved by several methods, including cooking, steaming, pulverizing (as in a juicer or grinder) or freezing and then fully mashing when thawed. The vegetables can be mixed together and it is important to use a variety if choosing to use vegetables. After cooking, steaming or pulverizing, the vegetables can be frozen for future use. Be sure to thaw completely before serving.

Also note that when feeding dogs that have hypothyroid conditions, you must cook cruciferous vegetables, including cabbage, Brussels Sprouts, broccoli, kale and cauliflower. These vegetables have the ability to suppress thyroid activity, but when cooked this process is eliminated and then they are find to feed- diarrhea.

Serving
Not many dogs will eat vegetables alone. I probably wouldn’t recommend the amount be over 20% of the diet if feeding raw, nor over 40% of the diet if home cooking (although note special cases may apply in certain health conditions, refer to the B-Naturals Newsletter directory for more information). Generally mix the vegetables with the animal protein and fat ingredients of the diet. This could include ground meat, organ meat, eggs and/or dairy.

If the dog’s stools appear too loose or voluminous, reduce the amount of vegetables or the total amount of food being fed. Too many vegetables and certain types of vegetables can also cause gas in some dogs.

Nutrient Values

Vegetables are rich in vitamin C, vitamin A and B vitamins. They also contain some minerals, including phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, calcium, zinc, selenium, iron and copper. However, the calcium is often not freely available, so they are not a balanced meal (nor do they contain the right amino acids for dogs that are carnivores). It is also unknown how well dogs, as carnivores, can utilize these nutrients from plant sources. But they will not harm dogs if used in moderate amounts, with the bulk of the meal being animal protein and fat, and bones if feeding raw. In other words, small amounts are fine, and may even be useful for some nutrients.
Another form of nutrients found in vegetables is phytonutrients. These are not found in animal food sources and while it is unknown if carnivores can use them, new research is finding many benefits of phytonutrients.

Phytonutrients include
- Carotenoids, from carrots, papaya, pumpkin, squash, sweet potatoes, broccoli, asparagus, kale, green leafy vegetables, peppers
- Lycopene, from tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato juice, watermelon
- Flavonoids, from tomatoes, sweet potatoes, cruciferous vegetables
- Indoles, from cruciferous vegetables
- Sulforaphane, from cruciferous vegetables
- Anthocyanins, from wild blueberries, bilberries, black berries
- Sterols, from cruciferous vegetables, cucumbers, squash, sweet potatoes, eggplant, tomatoes
- Elegiac acid, from Strawberries
- Lignans, from nuts and seeds

For dogs, probably the most phytonutrient dense vegetable to feed would be broccoli.
Since I don’t feed vegetables to my dogs, I add the Berte’s Green Blend, which contains the minerals, phytonutrients and vitamins found in vegetables from sea vegetation and alfalfa. Berte’s Green Blend also contains blue green algae, spirulina, Irish Moss and Dulce. The Fenugreek seed in it helps with digestion, and it also has garlic and alfalfa. I give my dogs (Rottweilers, from 80 lbs to 105 lbs) about a teaspoon a day. While I am not certain dogs can absorb nutrients from plant sources, I add this as an ‘insurance policy’ for good health. Sea vegetables are also good for color enhancement and GLA, an essential fatty acid useful to fight inflammation.

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