Vera Oliveira's Blog
Your dog doesn’t know how to tell you when he doesn’t feel well. In fact, although he’s your greatest companion, and knows when to snuggle up to make you feel better, you may not see when he was a serious health issue. A growing epidemic among dogs is the risk of cancer. In fact, more than half the dogs over ten years old are at cancer risk, and even younger dogs are too. The problem? Nutrition.
Feeding your dog for health
According to veterinarians, poor food choices can lead to the build-up of certain chemicals and toxins in your dog’s body, setting them up for cancer risk. Certain dog foods contain these aflatoxins, which are a type of mycotoxin that lead to digestive issues, painful joints, bad breath, and smelly waste. Aflatoxins develop from a fungus called Aspergillus that is a type of mold that forms on grains like rice, corn, soy, and wheat that are stored long term.
They can make your pup gain weight, develop allergies and itching, and even contribute to early death. They bind with your pet’s DNA to cause mutations in cells, forming cancers. Price doesn’t determine whether or not your pet’s food has toxins, studies show that both inexpensive and higher cost kibble contain aflatoxins.
But there are ways to combat the poor nutrition, toxins, and chemicals in your pet’s food.
- Seek out foods with lower grain contents. Dogs rarely eat grain in their natural state, so their digestive systems aren’t really up to the task.
- Feed your dog raw, fresh, whole foods when possible, rather than kibble. When fresh isn’t available, choose canned or soft pouch options rather than dry foods.
- Help your dog fight inflammation by adding fish oil to his food.
- Provide bones and organ meats when possible and offer bits of fresh fruit and vegetables too.
- Visit your vet regularly so that she can monitor his weight and growth patterns. Unexplained weight loss is one of the first noticeable symptoms of cancer in dogs.
- Give you dog Vitamin C, either as a supplement or via grass-fed meats.
- Feed your pet cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and dark, leafy greens such as spinach. Try pureeing them to mix them in with her food.
- Use digestive enzymes specially formulated for dogs.
If you’re new to your community, ask neighbors, co-workers, or your real estate agent for recommended veterinarians to keep your faithful furry friend healthy.