No More Grain Free Dog Food For My Dogs

 I am switching back to gain dog food. With lots of research I have decided that it is not worth the risk to continue using grain free food. Only 1% of dogs are allergic to gain. Many years ago I was one of “Those Pet Owners” whom just wanted the BEST for my dogs. I wanted to raise the best and healthiest dogs possible. You will still hear me refer to my dogs and puppies as “my babies”. So yes I switched my dog food to grain free. Back in the day there were many scary articles out there all about how bad grains are for dogs and cats. Today these articles are somehow disappearing from the web?? I can not find what I have seen easily in the past. Here is one I found with some of the information. It is the first website listed below. Once again I wish for you to understand that I feel that it is just not worth the risk. My Vet has also pulled grain free off their shelf. What really sold me on this idea was..” CVCA, the group that contacted the F.D.A., did a survey of 150 recent cases of D.C.M. Most of the dogs had been on grain-free diets . Steven L. Rosenthal, a partner, noted that they could not rule out other influences, but said that the group now sees eight to 12 new D.C.M. cases a month that are not associated with genetics.”  Eight to 12 dogs that are NOT ASSOCIATED WITH GENETICS are getting DCM !!!! Part of this article …... As pets have become increasingly humanised in recent years (almost becoming ersatz children in some cases), owners have become increasingly concerned about the quality of their pets’ diets, leading to rising interest in grain-free offerings. According to its critics, grain is merely a “filler” in pet food that has little real nutritional benefit . According to the website, “Although now ‘domesticated’, our pets have not evolved rumens along their digestive tracts in order to ferment cellulose and other plant material , nor have their pancreases evolved a way to secrete cellulose to split the cellulose into glucose molecules, nor have dogs and cats become efficient at digesting, assimilating and utilising plant material as a source of high quality protein”.

Possibly how this was generated with the grain free scare. The timing fits…. Part of this article... I speculate that this movement was triggered in part by a pet food company’s advertising campaign to generate a buzz around their unique pet food. I also suspect this pet food fad may be tied to the 2007 pet food contamination of wheat gluten with melamine, an industrial chemical used to make plastic . This tragic situation caused thousands of pets to become ill and many died of kidney failure . I believe pet food buyers felt betrayed by the big food companies and were actively looking for alternative diets.  

Probably the best “what is your dog really eating” article I have read. I feel it is worthy for you to read all of it. Highlights are... Blue Buffalo marketed a misleading health claim (“by-products are bad!”), but then used the ingredient they argued against in their own food, and were eventually caught doing it [14b]. Yikes . The big corps are currently in court, as well. There’s an ongoing class-action lawsuit against Hill’s, Purina, Mars and others, that alleges their “prescription diets ” are just a marketing ruse that require unnecessary vet visits and command higher prices, even though they don’t contain any actual medicine. Purina financed a class-action lawsuit for false advertising, which Blue Buffalo settled in late 2016 for $32 million Taste of the Wild , one of the best-selling premium natural brands, has risen to popularity with grain-free recipes and wolf-adorned bags, but it’s actually made with unremarkable ingredients by Diamond Pet Foods — the 5th largest manufacturer, who makes Costco’s discount Kirkland food among others, and has arguably the worst recall and safety record among the major firms.
Unfortunately… *At the end of this article is that they want to sell you “Their” dog food that is not available yet. New Grain free studies July 12, 2018 The first report on July 12, 2018. “Potential Connection Between Diet and Cases of Canine Heart Disease” d-to-heart-disease/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.0c9aad6bffe6 Highlights are…... This summer, the FDA issued a caution against grain-free diets . Since then, many more reports have poured in. Across the country at the University of California at Davis, Joshua Stern, another veterinary cardiologist, started to see surprising signs of heart disease in his golden retriever patients. Multiple veterinary groups, working independently at first, started to notice this disturbing trend. The world of veterinary cardiology is small, with about 200 specialists in the United States, Stern said. They alerted the FDA. Together, they began compiling cases and investigating environmental conditions that might affect unrelated dogs within one household . The vets started to find that many of the sick dogs had been on grain-free diets , high in legumes, leading up to their illnesses . Highlights are….. But earlier this month, the Food and Drug Administration announced that it is investigating a link between these diets and a common type of canine heart disease. The condition is dilated cardiomyopathy, or D.C.M. , in which the heart weakens and becomes enlarged. Symptoms include fatigue, difficulty breathing, coughing and fainting. Some dogs can abruptly go into heart failure. D.C.M. is typically seen in large breed dogs that have a genetic predisposition for it, like Doberman pinschers, Irish wolfhounds, boxers and Great Danes. But CVCA, a practice of 19 veterinary cardiologists in the Baltimore-Washington, D.C. area, alerted the F.D.A. that it has been seeing D.C.M. among other breeds, including golden retrievers, doodle mixes, Labrador retrievers and Shih Tzus. Other veterinary cardiologists have also noticed the phenomenon. “The first clue for us was when we saw a household with two unrelated miniature Schnauzers with D.C.M. ,” said Darcy Adin, a veterinary cardiologist who teaches at North Carolina State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. “They were both eating the same boutique, exotic protein, grain-free diet.” CVCA, the group that contacted the F.D.A., did a survey of 150 recent cases of D.C.M. Most of the dogs had been on grain-free diets . Steven L. Rosenthal, a partner, noted that they could not rule out other influences, but said that the group now sees eight to 12 new D.C.M. cases a month that are not associated with genetics. . Highlights are…. So, is this latest rash of DCM caused by taurine deficiency? Most of these affected dogs were eating boutique, grain-free, or exotic ingredient diets. Some of the dogs had low taurine levels and improved with taurine supplementation. But even some of those dogs that were not taurine deficient improved with taurine supplementation and diet change. Fortunately, cardiologists reported the issue to the FDA which is currently investigating this issue. [Note: Dr. Joshua Stern from the University of California Davis is conducting research on taurine deficiency and DCM in Golden Retrievers. Reconsider your dog’s diet. If you’re feeding a boutique, grain-free, or exotic ingredient diets, I would reassess whether you could change to a diet with more typical ingredients made by a company with a long track record of producing good quality diets. And do yourself a favor – stop reading the ingredient list! Although this is the most common way owners select their pets’ food, it is the least reliable way to do so. And be careful about currently available pet food rating websites that rank pet foods either on opinion or on based on myths and subjective information . It’s important to use more objective criteria (e.g., research, nutritional expertise, quality control in judging a pet food). The best way to select what is really the best food for your pet is to ensure the manufacturer has excellent nutritional expertise and rigorous quality control standards (see our “Questions you should be asking about your pet’s food” post). Last but not least I would like to know about these articles. Highlights are…. While the FDA points out that four of the reports involved dogs that had a deficiency of the amino acid taurine in their blood, which is well-documented as potentially leading to DCM, four other dogs involved in reports had normal blood taurine levels. What’s more, the FDA does not mention any evidence specifically connecting taurine deficiencies with grain-free diets. And while some of the research in this area was explained to me by a couple of pet food manufacturers, it is incomplete and inconclusive, at best. Highlights are… We don’t know why, exactly, this is happening. There are theories . We don’t know if the ingredients interfere with taurine uptake and/or utilization, or if they simply aren’t present in the ingredients in sufficient numbers. This is where everyone needs to pause and take a breath and support the research that needs to happen to GET those numbers. If you want a deeper dive into the science, check out Linda Case’s piece. We don’t know if it’s just about the ingredient list. Making blanket statements without real data (corn is bad!) is how we got here in the first place . We don’t know if it’s peas that are bad, or the combination of peas and something else, or if it’s a problem with poorly sourced ingredients, or manufacturing, or formulation, or… we don’t know. Highlights are…. Please note that the FDA’s headline did not say anything about “grain-free diets” causing heart problems – though almost all the blog posts and articles in other publications have been saying exactly that. If you read the FDA’s statement, you will see that they said there may be a link between some grain-free diets and canine DCM, but there are also many other things going on that may be responsible for an observed rise in cases of canine DCM. grain free dog food concerns Linda Case, long-time animal nutrition expert and author of Dog Food Logic, has written an in-depth article for WDJ’s September issue that goes into lots of detail about what is known about the dietary causes of DCM, including several issues regarding taurine and the amino acids (cysteine and methionine) that dogs use to produce taurine. Click here to read her article about the connections between diet and DCM in dogs. Hint : It’s not as simple as the possibility that the diets are lacking the amino acid precursors to taurine.


Renee Chesmore
Le Roy, IL 61752


Mobile: 319-551-7026  text/call