Dog Food Advisor › Forums › Diet and Health › Grain Free Diets and Heart Disease
May 23, 2019 at 12:05 am #138694 Report Abusecrazy4catsParticipant
The problem with this article is that it is from last August. Since then, it has been discovered that many of the dogs being diagnosed with NM DCM are not deficient in taurine. I hope it gets figured out soon!May 23, 2019 at 7:54 pm #138723 Report AbusePatricia AParticipant
Ooops.I knew that. I really should read the WHOLE article carefully especially when I post it. lol I hope so too Crazy4cats. I hope that when and IF this resolves that us pet owners can count on every dog food to be balanced properly and finally give us pet owners a chance to feel secure in what we’re feeding. Of course what one dog will more then thrive on might not be the same for the next but at least they’ll be choices that are just based on a dogs preference and maybe only tummy troubles with some foods and NOT causing deaths. Also I hope the manufactures stop thinking we’re not noticing when they ingredient split and give cheap fillers instead of meat and call it high protein and then still charge a lot to make even more of a profit . Of course again they’ll always be recalls from salmonella, plastic pieces etc. But at least then with too many we always had the choice to switch brands leading the company to be more careful or loose their good name and customers. But the vitamin d and other deadly things has got to stop altogether also. One time that happens and companies should be held accountable by big fines maybe and maybe then we won’t be getting so many recalls all the time. Just venting here. Now I feel better.May 27, 2019 at 10:56 am #138993 Report Abuse
I found this website with dog foods listed:
https://www.heartdoghealth.org/foods.htmlMay 27, 2019 at 11:13 am #138994 Report Abuse
“My name is Carolyn Kinsler and Kelsey is my dog. I created this website as a place for dog owners to find accurate and unbiased information about Nutritionally Mediated Dilated Cardiomyopathy. I am ONLY including scientifically based information on this site. At the end of each page, I will provide links to the websites and publications I used to write the page. That being said, I am not a veterinarian, a nutritionist or an expert on commercial dog foods, but I am a skilled researcher and a devoted dog person who believes that we need to be full partners with our vets in our dog’s health care”.
Did you read the disclaimer?
The information is the same old, same old. “Cherry picking” information to support an opinion or to prove a point.
None of it compares with one veterinarian that has examined your pet and knows it’s history *sigh*
May 27, 2019 at 11:18 am #138999 Report Abuse
- This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by anonymous.
Anon, I know a lot of people on here don’t like Fromm. I know they are trying to be helpful. I been looking and researching another food for my dog. A lot of people on here like Purina. I do to, however I seen a lot of complaint s with it. I posted it on another place. After reading I was going to try Pro plan beef and rice, now I am rethinking it. I might try Fromm beef and oats, the new one. Did you try it yet??May 27, 2019 at 11:21 am #139002 Report Abuse
No, I have not tried it as I am a vegetarian and avoid red meat for my dogs too.
They are doing fine on the Salmon La Veg as a base for now. I do add a little boiled chicken or scrambled egg…
My terrier was fine on the Adult Classic, however my allergy dog does best on a fish based food and it’s easier and cost effective to go with one formula.May 31, 2019 at 11:05 am #139415 Report Abuse
Hi everyone I just wanted to share, not that you don’t already know this, but I had a vet appointment today for check up and we were discussing the DCM thing. My vet said not to use grain free diets and don’t buy from small companies. He also said he likes companies that sell RX diets, he said since they sell these diets they are very knowledgeable and trained nutritionist that make these foods, he said he feeds his dogs Purina. I know you guys know this already just wanted to share what my vet said.
May 31, 2019 at 11:24 am #139417 Report Abuse
- This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by joanne l.
Vets in my states program get a max of one class in companion animal nutrition and on top of that it’s an elective so not even necessary to take. It spans from horses down to small animals like guinea pigs and other rodents. Unless he is a veterinary nutritionalist I would take his recommendation with a grain of salt as I’m sure the only thing he knows of is the big three because of how heavily pushed it is on vets.May 31, 2019 at 11:35 am #139418 Report Abuse
I completely understand, however with this going on right now he told me advice for this situation. I am not a fan of Purina, so I am not leaning toward anyone right now. What I do know is I don’t like grain free period. So I am avoiding that for sure. My dog never did good on grain free. So I narrowed that down, however I am feeding Holistic Select right now. I may choose to try Purina to see how it goes. If it goes well with my dog than it is fine with me.May 31, 2019 at 1:22 pm #139425 Report Abuse
I’m confused. Didn’t u already say you tried purina and it made your dogs sick? And you also said you rotate among a variety of grain free foods? Or something to that effect? And yet your dogs do poorly on them?? I’ve read most of your posts on this forum. You seem to say one thing do another, ask a million questions and when you receive answers on both sides of the argument you do the exact opposite of whatever was suggested to you? Can’t tell if you’re genuinely confused or a troll.
Find meat based low carb foods that work for your dog and leave it at that. Have an echo done if you’re that concerned about a problem that isn’t even widely spread. Many many more dogs die from complications of obesity and inappropriate high carb diets and because of idiot owners and backyard breeders who result in the needless killing of thousands of dogs a day in shelters. I’d be more worried about that.May 31, 2019 at 3:58 pm #139433 Report Abuse
Hlaleycokie, It was the can that did not agree with him. I am talking about trying the dry food.May 31, 2019 at 4:56 pm #139436 Report Abuse
And furthermore, what all this stuff that goes on with dog food can be frustrating for anyone.June 10, 2019 at 8:18 am #140334 Report Abuse
I found this article: https://www.heartdoghealth.org/foods.html
If this helps anyone.June 15, 2019 at 7:49 pm #140670 Report Abuse
Just wanted to mention that both Hill’s and purina are coming out with quiet a bit of grain free foods. Another reason to completely take away their credibility on the issue. The hills foods is almost nothing but peas and potatoes. Wonder how much “science” went behind that. Same with the proplan varieties. Mostly made up of pea and potatoe.
Thought I would post this here as well. These companies clearly aren’t too concerned about dcm.June 29, 2019 at 1:29 am #141501 Report Abuse
Champion has this nifty non biased explanation on their stance on dcm. Not only have they apparently been doing feed trails before they’ve actually done two lengthy ones recently on two “prone” breeds of dogs and found nothing to be worried about while they were eating champion foods. They also mentioned that they do work with vet nutritionalists and have done extensive studies on amino acid profiles, etc. the fda still has no clear answer as to what’s causing it. This article also breaks down how few dogs are actually affected by this. Less than .1% of all dogs in the US are suspected to have diet related dcm. And even then none of those are actually proven. It’s all still speculation and beagles and labs fed champion foods long term showed no symptoms of any kind. I find it all interesting tbh.
Edit: read some more I guess purina, Royal Canin, and Hill’s all are now on the list of cases reported and what their dogs were eating. More grain in foods are included as well.
June 29, 2019 at 2:33 am #141505 Report AbuseJoseph GMember
- This reply was modified 3 years, 9 months ago by haleycookie.
The FDA has released an update, detailing for the first time the brands with the most problems associated with them. The brands with at least 10 reported cases follow, but many other smaller brands are named in the full report:
3. Taste of the Wild
4. 4 Health
5. Earthborn Holistic
6. Blue Buffalo
7. Nature’s Domain
10. California Natural
11. Natural Balance
13. Nature’s Variety
16. Rachel Ray Nutrish
91% of cases involved Grain-Free foods. 93% used pulses in their formulation. Most were dry food. More cases were observed in males than females. Animal protein source was from many different sources.
Golden retrievers tens to be prone to taurine deficiency and were the breed most affected, but amino acid profiles in the food were all normal. No other nutrient abnormalities have been found so far.
More information is here, but the cause is still unknown: https://www.fda.gov/animal-veterinary/news-events/fda-investigation-potential-link-between-certain-diets-and-canine-dilated-cardiomyopathyJune 29, 2019 at 10:30 am #141550 Report Abuse
Most people take their dog to the vet when they feel something is not right with the dog.June 29, 2019 at 10:32 am #141551 Report Abuse
I read on the FDA site that grains are not causing any harm.June 29, 2019 at 10:34 am #141552 Report Abuse
“Most people take their dog to the vet when they feel something is not right with the dog”.
Some of the dogs that have been diagnosed have absolutely no symptoms. People that live on a modest income don’t take their dog to the vet if they can avoid it.
I do now, take them for annuals and such because I had a dog that came down with cancer, another one with allergies that needed the expertise of a specialist.
For years I did not, just took them to Petco for the rabies shot every 3 years.June 29, 2019 at 10:53 am #141555 Report Abuse
I guess if people take their dogs for annual check ups the vet could of heard that the heart did not sound right. I know my vet listens to the heart and lungs when he gets his annual check up. I am not rich but I do annual check ups. My other dog I didn’t, but I guess I got lucky he was a very healthy dog.
June 29, 2019 at 3:11 pm #141631 Report AbuseaimeeParticipant
- This reply was modified 3 years, 9 months ago by joanne l.
Hi joanne l
Keep in mind that DCM can be a silent killer. In other words a dog ‘s heart may sound normal on a dog’s annual exam but the dog has DCM. Echo is the only way to assess function.June 29, 2019 at 4:00 pm #141641 Report Abuse
Thanks Aimee, I was unaware of that. However, I was gonna put my dog on Instinct LID lamb diet, now I think I better wait until the FDA has more info. Natures Instinct is on the list but it is small but not sure if I should chance it. Some people on here recommend Purina Pro Plan maybe I will go with that and keep my fingers crossed that my dog can handle it. Oh boy what a mess.June 29, 2019 at 4:15 pm #141645 Report Abuse
Hope these articles help someone
http://skeptvet.com/Blog/2016/09/more-evidence-that-laboratory-testing-of-healthy-dogs-and-cats-uncovers-lots-of-abnormalities-of-questionable-significance/June 29, 2019 at 4:26 pm #141646 Report AbuseAnonymousInactive
Thank you JOSEPH G for that link!
Embedded in the article is a link to the full list of all dog and cat DCM reports submitted to FDA -CVM from 1/1/2014 to 4/30/2019.June 29, 2019 at 8:25 pm #141687 Report Abuse
Haleycookie, where did you find that info?June 29, 2019 at 9:26 pm #141727 Report AbuseaimeeParticipant
I read through Champion’s response and in my opinion it is very reminiscent of and just as unbiased as the response of the tobacco industry when the first link was made between smoking and cancer. : )
In my opinion, very cleverly written to model after the response of the tobacco industry, “our science found no concerns” but as I read it I find that what they are reporting is very vague and appears to be poorly done.
For example what is “long-term feeding trials with enhanced DCM protocols” In regards to length was it 2 days, 2 weeks, a month, 2 months?? Considering it isn’t yet know how long is may take for dietary DCM to become apparent how are they confident that their trial would have been long enough to find any abnormalities.
What are “enhanced DCM protocols”. The only takeaway I got from their response is that perhaps they measured taurine. Considering most cases have normal taurine levels it seems silly to me to sound an “all clear” based on that test.
Champion likes to point out that dietary DCM appears to be uncommon. The true incidence isn’t known. But I think it is fair to say that not every dog/cat consuming a problematic diet becomes ill. In the Melamine crisis huge numbers of dogs and cats that were exposed didn’t become ill. Same with the association between renal disease and chicken jerky or between grapes/raisins and renal disease. So for illustration sake let’s say that for problem “X ” 1 in a thousand becomes ill. Is testing several dogs relevant? I would say it is not. And Champion hasn’t said what number of dogs participated in their trials. Hmmm
Let’s look at this statement…
“In the recipes Champion makes, we emphasize fresh and raw meat with total animal-derived ingredients ranging from 60 to 85 percent of the finished product. Legumes are not a significant feature in Champion’s recipes, and never have been.”
Take the finished product Acana Free Run Poultry chosen at random GA is 29% protein 17% fat and 12 % moisture and I’ll toss in 3 % ash. 100-29-17-12-3= 39% min plant based nutrient.
Looking at the ingredient list and removing the animal based ingredients , and discarding the ingredients after salt leaves us with whole green peas, whole red lentils, whole pinto beans, , chickpeas, whole green lentils, whole yellow peas, lentil fiber,
Those ingredients, except for the fiber, are in addition to being sources of carbohydrate are also sources of protein From USDA nutrient database an average of 1 part protein for every 3 parts carb. So of that 29 % protein 10 grams may be from the legumes.
Total plant content 39 % + 10% and you get 49% plant based ingredients which I consider a “significant feature”
Total animal based 19% + 17% fat for a total of 36%
In that example I made assumptions as I am using the GA which is just min values therefore the results are not completely accurate but it is very different from the claim of 60-85% animal derived content in the finished product.
Personally, the only thing I can figure that may be 85% animal content finished product would be some of the treats.
Several years ago I asked Champion if they did AAFCO feeding trials. They answered affirmatively. On further inquiry as I recall I asked how long they were for and they replied a few weeks. Hmm more questions and they report they test for palatability, digestibility and stool quality. Most would assume by an AAFCO feeding trial they were talking about a trial for nutritional adequacy but that is not the response I got.
I see this response from Champion as nothing more than a marketing piece . I urge caution whenever looking at any statements made by any food manufacturer in regards to their product.
Perhaps if Champion really wanted to contribute to the knowledge base they should hire veterinary cardiologists and hold free echo screening for DCM for dogs who have eaten their food as their primary source of nutrition. With all the frequent buyer programs it shouldn’t be too hard for retailers to track Champion’s customers.June 29, 2019 at 9:54 pm #141743 Report Abuse
Just as you have your opinion I have mine. Purina, Hill’s, and Royal Canin are all over priced garbage. Have been for a long long time. Champion has nutritionalist (and has for awhile it seems unlike what a lot of you all thought) formulating their foods. They’ve ran trials before and after dcm issues occurred and have found no correlation to dcm and their foods. Kinda like how purina Hill’s and Royal Canin find that their foods are great and healthy ;). To each their own. Dogs aren’t meant to be carb loaded. But oh well. As I’ve said before money talks for the big three and will continue to do so while people remain convinced they’re the best for some odd reason.June 30, 2019 at 9:14 am #141774 Report Abuse
Aimee I agree, there really is a lot of peas and legumes in champion pet foods. Also, other brands , like Zignature has peas, pea protein, pea flour. All these brands are taking full advantage of using pea protein to up the protein % on the bag. I hope they get what they deserve. I don’t like how they cheat the dogs out of meat and use pea protein. Not acceptable to me.
Also, I believe I mentioned this before, that legumes and peas have far more protein than grains, so IMO they can not bump up the protein with grains like they can with legumes and peas.
June 30, 2019 at 10:40 am #141816 Report AbuseBobby dogMember
- This reply was modified 3 years, 9 months ago by joanne l.
Ha Ha aimee, thought the same thing when I read Champion’s letter. Couldn’t agree more. The famous picture of the tobacco industry executives testifying in front of congress ran through my head!!
I fed my dog grapes when he was a puppy. I was not aware of the danger. He was never affected health wise. When learned of the dangers I immediately stopped. Never once did I think since he was not affected it’s all right to keep giving him grapes. Same thing with this NM DCM alert, I will keep posted with the current research and change my food criteria as I see necessary and/or is recommended.June 30, 2019 at 5:17 pm #141908 Report Abuse
@joanne l orijen is a meat based food. Far more meat than anything Hill’s, purina, or rc will ever offer. They are some of the lowest carb dog foods around. So not sure where you all are getting your into it’s mostly peas. Acana is more but still under 40% of the food is vegetables and fruit.
They’ve been doing feed trials the past year on labs and beagles and have found no instances of heart problems so far. Not to mention most of those on this forum were incorrect on them not working with vets to formulate their foods. They seem to actually fit most of wsava guidelines, which I find comical.
If anyone would actually read the FDA’s article they’ll notice how they recommend to not change foods yet as this is still not a common issue at all. Not only that, the testing they’ve done on the foods have shown nothing conclusive and all foods are showing up balanced and appropriate. I suppose after they start testing the dogs and how the different breeds synthesize taurine in foods with peas we’ll know more, but is suspect it will be a genetic breed issue more than anything else. But til then it’s not a wide spread issue that I’m concerned about. Nor should anyone else be, this mass hysteria going on in this forum is almost comical. To think feeding a carnivore a mostly carb diet is healthy. hahahah. Whatever floats ur boat. I’m done arguing about it. I’ll just be reminding folk whom are concerned that it is a very small unproven issue at this moment and to not feed into the hysteria some of you push so hard.June 30, 2019 at 7:48 pm #141924 Report Abuse
Haleycookie, I see your point and it is getting crazy here. However I guess I will just avoid grain free for now, b/c if it does depend on the dog I don’t know how my dog will do so for now grain in for me. And your right, my fault Orjien is not high on the list and they do have a lot of meat. I think I was thinking about Acana. I think there is not much more to say about it, until it is revealed of what is actually going on.July 1, 2019 at 4:43 am #141931 Report AbuseJoseph GMember
Dogs are not carnivores. It is a myth that dogs have similar dietary needs as wolves. Down to the genetic level, dogs are omnivores. For example, dogs have 30-times the starch digesting capability of wolves (the gene for the analysis enzyme is activated in dogs much more than in wolves).
Dogs do not require carbs like humans do so it’s reasonable to feed them a diet with a fair amount of meat, but there’s no scientifically sound reason to avoid starches or vegetables.
Methionine, the building block for taurine, is rich in some grains and poor in pulses, but no food tested had unusually low levels of methionine.
Behaviorally as well, dogs are very different from wolves. This is why kooks like Cesar Milan are frowned upon by the dog training profession.
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