2019 "Grain Free Scare" Update:
So, just as we thought would happen -- the FDA's investigation has "blown a hole" in their whole theory that grain free foods are the only foods that are linked to DCM in dogs. In fact, it is not just grain free foods, and it's not just their so called "BEG" diets with exotic meat, but there are tons of reports linked to common meats like Chicken and Beef! And that's another thing -- the FDA has named 15 brands that *may* cause DCM in dogs based SOLEY on complaints and NOT verified evidence that the dogs actually have DCM or if they do have DCM it has not been verified if it is caused from genetic or from the food. It is outrageously unfair to the dog food companies being named in this fashion when there is ZERO proof at this time that grain free foods are linked to DCM in dogs.
Below is the most recent report released by the FDA:
FDA Investigation into Potential Link between Certain Diets and Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy:
And here are some links from food experts who say the FDA's reports are not what they seem:
FDA Update to DCM Investigation clarifies a few things:
DODDS RESPONDS TO FDA STATEMENT ON CANINE HEART DISEASE, TAURINE DEFICIENCY AND POTENTIAL DIETARY CAUSES:
Update on Diet-Associated Dilated Cardiomyopathy:
What You Need to Know About Grain Free Dog Food and Heart Disease:
2018 Grain Free Scare:
Okay, so we want to touch on the controversial topic of the "grain free scare" that came to light in July of 2018 and is currently being investigated by the FDA to find out if it is a Taurine deficiency or if Legumes are the cause. We ourselves, have done extensive hours of research and all results are inconclusive at this time, however, grain free diets that seem to contain large amounts of Legumes (lentils, beans, peas, chickpeas, potatoes) within the first 10 ingredients show a higher rate of DCM (dilated cardiomyopathy) in dogs. Although, researcher's admit that they are not certain of the cause at this time, and it is NOT just grain free diets that are causing DCM in dogs, and the majority of dogs are large breed dogs and older dogs. More investigation is needed to find the root cause for the increase of dogs with DCM and it's silly to hit the panic button on something when sufficient research has not been provided.
We're not hitting the panic button over the dog food we're currently feeding our dogs and puppies (Instinct the RAW brand), as shown above, because our dogs are doing AMAZING on it and the FDA admits that not all grain free diets are linked to DCM. Our dogs are cleared for heart issues prior to breeding, and any heart issues would come up in their annual exams. We have worked alongside our veterinarian, and with a canine nutritionist with a background in Biology and Veterinary Pharmaceuticals to select the Nature's Variety Instinct the RAW brand food that our dogs and puppies are currently eating to ensure that we are providing biologically appropriate food that will meet all of their nutritional needs.
We do also supplement our dogs with Taurine rich foods, and have done so for over 10 years, even before we were raising Cavapoos! And we did this from a purely nutritional stand-point to ensure that our breeding dogs received everything they needed to be healthy. At this point in time it is only prudent to wait for the FDA to complete their investigation, but you will see many changes, particularly in the lack on brands listed here and for the canned food that we feed our dogs and puppies (and send home with our puppies).
Dogs principally eat meat, and vegetables to a lesser extent. In this case, this is good because taurine can be found in foods of animal origin. Taurine can naturally be found in:
Chicken, especially in the legs or liver, where there is a greater amount.
Pork and beef. You can use the hearts of these meats and prepare a home-made diet supplement for your dog.
Eggs (boiled) or dairy (cheese), always in small doses, also contain taurine and can be very helpful to your pet.
Here is a good link explaining what Taurine is and why it's important:
Currently the ONLY food that the FDA and WSAVA is recommending are as follows:
Hill's Science Diet
Why aren't we jumping on the band wagon and recommending those foods? Because EVERY SINGLE ONE of those foods contain ANIMAL BY-PRODUCTS and/or CORN and there is not enough meat in those foods (or none at all) to support healthy pet. We can agree that Legumes could be a concern, just as any ingredient would be, if they are a higher percentage than the meat content. But until there is proper evidence or the food industry changes -- there are only two options, feeding grain free or changing to a food that does not support a dog's health. For every bag of garbage food vets sell like the Royal Canin or the others listed above -- they get a percentage of that sale which furthers their vet clinics, and they will argue that their food has been "tested" for optimal nutrition -- BULL ROAR! For those of our puppy customers who have Netflix -- watch "PET FOOLED" for an eye-opener! A GOOD VET will tell you that the first ingredient should be MEAT (not meat meal or any other ingredient).
Here are some interesting links about the link between grain free diets and DCM: