My giant schnauzer has crytals in his urine which can develop into serious health issues. He requires a low PH food. Right now he is on Hill Prescription Vet Formula. It is not a very good quality food and full of corn and other grains. Unfortunately PH is not addressed in the labeling of dog foods. Does anyone happen to know of a low PH, high quality large breed dry food? Any help would be appreciated. Thank you
The way I understand it is that meat protein is a natural acidifier, so look for foods that are high in meat content. What some people do is add a half teaspoon of apple cider vinegar per cup of dog food, or give vit C or cranberry capsules. As long as your dog is full grown, I wouldn’t worry about large breed formula and if he isn’t full grown, you should know that a lot of large breed formulas are not actually appropriate for large breed puppies because they were not formulated according to the most up to date research.
Thank you very much for your response. This helps me make a decision. I have heard about the apple cider vinegar so I will add that to his food. Thank you again.
The effect of food components on the pH of the urine can be complex. The sulfur amino acids cysteine and methionine are acidifying and I believe they are found more often in animal based proteins vs. plant protein which is why “meat” is considered acidifying. I’ve also read that corn protein is relatively higher in sulfur AA. However, sulfur AA are only one contribution to the resulting urine pH. Other players are calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium which are alkalinizing and phosphorus and chloride that are acidifying.
You can call the companies of the food you are interested in and ask what the average pH is of the urine of dogs on their diet. But many companies don’t track health parameters of the foods they produce. You can also predict pH based on the amounts of the previous mentioned components ( there are equations to do this). But the best information will be gotten from your own dog by measuring urine pH over various times of day while on a particular diet.
Increasing water intake to decrease urine concentration can also help decrease crystal formation. I’ve read that Apple Cider Vinegar increases urine pH because it has an “alkaline ash”. I don’t think I’d use Vit. C. I know it was tested in cats and it didn’t have an effect on urine pH but I don’t know what dose was tested.
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