Food Is Thy Medicine and Medicine is thy Food
The very food that your vet, breeder or pet store is suggesting you feed your beloved dog is the very food that is slowly killing your dog. Commercial dog food, aka “kibble” is one of the three elements that directly contributes to chronic disease & ultimately the unnecessary death of dogs. (The other two are vaccines & stress but that’s for another article). Dogs are needlessly suffering with allergies and dying of cancer more today than ever before. We all need to re-examine what we are feeding our dogs. What is going into their bodies and how it is affecting them. The choices we make regarding what we put in our dog’s bowls is the difference between chronic disease and health and vitality. Together we can stop this ubiquitous epidemic.
According to world renowned immunologist Dr. Jean Dodds and veterinarian oncologist, Dr. Greg Ogilve of California Vet Hosp., FOOD is THE most powerful tool to prevent cancer AND to cure it! Dr. Jean Dodds has a powerhouse book out called “Canine Nutrigenomics”. I urge everyone to take heed in her findings.
Physical and Mental Well-Being
Did you know that carbohydrates fuel cancer cells? Well guess what the most common ingredients in most dog foods? Yes, carbs! Did you ever stop & wonder what is in the unidentifiable “kibble” & how it impacts your dog on a daily basis? How would your mind, body, & spirit function if you ate Doritos® every day for your entire life?! Diet affects a dog’s physical and mental well-being. A healthy diet creates healthier behavior, too! Adopt the mindset of feeding your dog a “Species Appropriate Diet”. Your dog will thank you.
We have been convinced; well truthfully, misled by veterinarians (even good ones), advertisements, family “traditions” and sheer convenience; that super market commercial kibble and canned food is what we should feed our dogs. Vets will make you think they have a background in nutritional – but they don’t’. They get their info from big box food reps. Let’s pause and apply common sense and some proven scientific facts.
The Animal Pet Food Institute conducted an in-depth study on the actual ingredients found in common dog food (as well as cat). Their findings concluded that when the ingredients label reads “animal by-products” that is a catch-all phrase for everything: diseased animals, road kill, dead zoo animals, meats not rendered suitable for human consumption & euthanized farm animals. The list goes on. They also determined that there are various cancer-causing additives & preservatives that go by the names of BHA, BTA, Ethoxyquin & Polypropylene glycol in the very food that people feed their dogs! Not to mention corn, soy & wheat. Oh my!
Read the Labels of all Food and Treats
It wasn’t until approximately 60 years ago that dogs were introduced to commercial food – kibble and canned food. Before then they thrived and survived on what nature provided. Dogs are carnivores and have survived on a raw meat/vegetable/fruit diet for hundreds of years. Dogs cannot digest grains, such as corn the way we can. They will THRIVE and most importantly have a longer, incredibly happier quality of life, on a natural, or as close to natural diet. This is what is known as a “species appropriate diet”. In other words, dogs are carnivores and should be fed as carnivores. The pet food industry is “feeding” them as forced omnivores.
There are a variety of good foods on the market today. They run the gamut price-wise as well as quality. You can select from kibble, canned food, dehydrated food, cooked whole food and raw whole food. The best advice I can offer is go with a good quality food that works for you and your dog. But you need to educate yourself. The same goes for veterinary care – YOU need to be your dog’s health care advocate.
In the long run, a species appropriate, natural diet is less expensive and most beneficial to you and your dog. Put your money into food so you can forgo unnecessary vet visits. Poor nutrition and over vaccination are proven to be directly associated with inflammation and chronic disease. Fresh food equals health; which means fewer unnecessary vet visits.
When in Doubt … Use Nature as your Guide
Decades ago my biggest fear was, “will my dogs stay healthy and what will happen if they get ill?” I have seen healthy dogs poisoned by the big box food that they are given. When a dog is fed a species appropriate diet, you have the peace of mind that you are providing them with what nature intended for them to have. A whole, fresh diet will support their immune system and inevitably keep them strong when and if disease creeps in. Without question, diet has saved my dogs’ lives. So please, give your dog the gift of health!
What is the best food for your dog? A WHOLE FOOD SPECIES APPROPRIATE DIET. What type is really a question that should be answered by you and a qualified canine nutritionist. You live with your dog on a daily basis and know what he / she likes as well as what he/she can tolerate. Use common sense and make good choices, and you and your dog will come to a great decision about what food to eat. It’s important to keep in mind that VARIETY is the key. Just remember diet rotation. When beginning, select one, and then over a few weeks, gradually introduce different foods. I never give my dogs the same meal. Daily and/or weekly I change it. They may have turkey with veggies one day & then cooked salmon the next, & raw organ meat with raw bones the next. KNOW YOUR FOOD SOURCES. USA, Organic, etc.
Below is a list of recommended, high quality dog foods. The companies that produce these foods meet tough testing standards, have all-natural ingredients, do NOT use animal by-products, fillers or chemical preservatives and must meet criteria for disclosing the name and location of its manufacturers. Remember the pet – food poisoning several years back? All of those foods did NOT meet any of these standards. Equally important, the foods below have not been on the tainted list. (FYI – Eukanuba/Iams, Science Diet, Hills, Purina, etc. REFUSED to cooperate and FAILED all of these tests.)
The foods listed below are NOT found in a super market. They can be online or in specialty dog stores. If you can’t find a food please feel free to ask me & I will be happy to help! Dogs should NOT have a short existence here on earth. Think about ALL that they have offered us over the centuries! When we make that important decision to have dogs in our lives, we should also be responsible and make the decision and commitment to provide them with a healthy, species appropriate diet.
Make a positive change that will help your dog and in turn you. Give your dogs what nature intended them to have. Your food costs will be a bit more but your vet bills will be MUCH lower. Most importantly, your dog will thrive and be vibrant! Make a shift towards a healthy & happy life for your dog and yourself.
Dogs can live longer & healthier!
Let’s return the love.
Provide a healthy lifestyle!
Dry / Kibble Dog Foods
I do NOT recommend kibble. Dry food is not the healthiest diet for your dog. Dogs fed kibble are in a constant state of dehydration. That has tremendous ramifications on the body’s organs over time. It’s void of nutrients, despite what label says. It is the furthest food from nature. It lacks adequate animal protein & typically contains high amounts of carbohydrates, sugar & grains. Kibble combined with over vaccinations are two driving forces causing chronic disease and cancer in dogs. If you choose to go with a kibble here are just a few suggestions.
1.) Ziwi Peak
4.) Solid Gold
5.) Nature’s Variety
Canned Dog Foods
4.) Solid Gold
5.) Ziwi Peak
8.) Tripett (canned tripe w/ garlic). A wonderful supplement to add to food … a few times a week
Freeze Dried Raw
Stella & Chewy’s – up to 40 lbs. Then go with Stella & Chewy’s frozen raw
Primal – (same as above)
1.) Dr. Harvey’s – Veggie Base. Add you own protein!
2.) Sojos Freeze Dried
3.) The Honest Kitchen Freeze Dried Grain Free
5.) Orijen – often this is too rich and causes GI issues for dogs. Quite a lengthy list but decent.
NOTE – Through the dehydration process, food can lose its nutritional value
Species Appropriate Raw Foods (Always my First Choice)
1.) Answers Raw Food
2.) Steve’s Real Food
4.) Stella & Chewy’s
Raw food MUST be brought to room temperature to ease digestion and aide absorption; particularly for older dogs. Add very warm filtered water to raw food for optimal results. Raw food can also be cooked; however, not recommended.
- Raw bones are safe for dogs. Cooked bones are NOT. They’re extremely dangerous.
- You should always monitor your dog w/ any type of eating… food or treat.
- Provide Plenty of water for your dog. Chewing promotes thirst.
- Food is one thing but treats make the time between breakfast & dinner a yummy time.
Top Treats and Chews to give to your Dogs
1.) Kongs are by far my dogs (and my) favorite! You can customize them to your dog’s desire.
2.) Look in your refrigerator! Seasonal Produce: Apples, Pears, Zucchini, etc.
3.) Freeze dried WILD Salmon. NOT Atlantic
4.) Answers Raw Rewards – Fermented Cheese – Tumeric and Spirulina
5.) Stella & Chewy’s – One of my favorites. Soft, yummy and healthy. ALL Treats!
6.) Dr. Harvey’s Power Patties. Another favorite but stinky
7.) Dr. Harvey’s Fish Treats. Same as above
8.) Raw Goat Milk and/yogurt by Answers and Steve’s Real Food.
9.) Fermented Fish Stock – by Answers
10.) RAW Grass Fed Marrow Bones – Do NOT give unattended or to a resource guarder.
11.) Tripe bones, Buffalo chews, etc.
12.) Pureed Pumpkin, Squash and/or Sweet Potato! Stuff in Kong, add treats and freeze!
13.) Wapiti Split Elk Antlers
14.) Max & Ruffy – Tree of Life
If your pets medical condition continues or worsens for more than 24 – 48 hours get to a vet clinic ASAP.