Hello Concerned Pet Parents! On 12/23/22 the FDA released an update on non-hereditary DCM (dilated cardiomyopathy) in dogs. Here's what we currently know.
FDA Investigation Focus:
Since 2018 the FDA has been targeting Pulse Ingredients (a subset of legumes, harvested as a dry crop with low concentrations of lipids. They include peas, lentils, chickpeas, and dry beans) as a potential factor in non-hereditary DCM. Pulses are included in both grain-free and grain-inclusive dry dog food formulations as sources of protein and fiber.
The FDA's Update:
In its most recent update, the FDA stated it had insufficient data to establish causality among DCM case reports and pet food products eaten by afflicted dogs. The 'FDA's Work on Potential Causes of Non-Hereditary DCM in Dogs' was updated with new information on December 22, 2022. The FDA will not provide further routine updates on this matter unless substantive scientific information comes to light.
In reference to dry foods containing pulse ingredients and/or grain-free food formulations, the FDA says: "The FDA does not know the specific connection between these diets and cases of non-hereditary DCM and is continuing to explore the role of genetics, underlying medical conditions, and/or other factors."
Read the full FDA update here
What should you do now?
We feel confident after this extensive study that pet parents can continue to feed the diets that have helped their pets thrive and heal. If you still have concerns - we get it. We all want to know with certainty that we are doing the very best for our pets. Thankfully it is easy to do with a feeding model that includes variety - an idea we have advocated for since we opened our doors in 2007. Variety in your pet's nutrition has always been a good idea and has never been as easy to achieve as it is now.
- Consider adding raw or fresh food to your pets diet. This can be as simple as adding a freeze-dried topper or a raw frozen nugget to their bowl of food. Or supplement your dog's dry food with goat's milk.
- Switch to grain-inclusive food without pulse ingredients. We offer many food options using rice, barley, oatmeal, millet, sorghum and other grain-friendly ingredients.
- Make Taurine-rich treat choices. Taurine is an amino acid found in meat, fish and eggs that is critical for heart health. Raw and high-meat protein foods have high levels of naturally-produced Taurine. You can also supplement Taurine in your pets diet by choosing taurine-rich treats made from fish, beef, beef organs or poultry instead of a traditional biscuit.
Whatever path you choose to feed your pet, just know that we will continue to provide you with the best products from the best companies to ensure your pet thrives. We will continue to provide you with data-driven advice and unbiased research so that you can make informed decisions. We will always advocate for your pet's health!
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