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Dog Food Warning

The FDA has issued a warning that some dogs are developing DCM ( dilated cardiomyopathy which is an enlargement of the heart ) that are being fed " grain free " dog foods that are high in peas, lentils, and potatoes. A lot of the grain free foods use exotic proteins like bison, kangaroo, duck, venison and lamb. They replace the grains with peas, lentils, potatoes and chickpeas.

The dogs that developed DCM were breeds that are not genetically predisposed to developing this type of heart problem. Dogs that developed DCM tested low for an amino acid called taurine. Breeds that developed DCM were mixed breeds, golden retriever, Labrador, whippet, schnauzer and bulldog.

Most veterinarians recommend selecting a pet food that is made by a well known manufacturer, with good quality control. Grain free foods don't offer any health benefits over a food that contains grains. Dogs were fed food with grain long before grain free came along.

If you do feed a grain free food keep an eye out for any symptoms of DCM. Symptoms include coughing, fainting, fatigue, difficulty breathing and some will develop a swollen abdomen from retaining fluid. If your dog shows any of these symptoms you need to take your dog to your veterinarian. Sometimes the symptoms can be reversed with medication and a diet change.