What You Need To Know About That FDA Alert
There’s no question that everyone wants what is best for their pet. That’s why it’s easy to panic when the FDA issues alerts about the foods we give our furry friends every day. The recent FDA statement that there may be a link between several grain-free dog foods and heart disease has sent many owners into a tizzy. Of course we are always here to support you and answer your questions in-store, but a little information might at least start to quell the worry.
The FDA’s announcement was not a blanket statement by any means. Their studies focused solely on cases of canine dilated cardiomyopathy (or DCM). This type of heart disease weakens the heart muscle’s ability to pump blood, which often ultimately leads to congestive heart failure. Some breeds are already genetically prone to this kind of cardiac health issue, regardless of their diet. The President of the American Veterinary Medical Association John de Jong also pointed out that “the F.D.A. has a responsibility that if there are more than five or ten isolated cases [of an issue], that is something to be reported.” Out of the estimated 77 million pet dogs in the United States, there have only been 506 cases of DCM reported that were potentially linked to diet since 2014.
In short, the alert is not an immediate call to toss out the food you give to Fido. Nutrition is a constantly evolving and sometimes imperfect science. At Petwell Supply, we generally recommend foods with the highest quality ingredients and the lowest amount of processing in production. Some pets have allergies or GI issues that require them to have a grain-free diet, and that doesn’t necessarily mean they will develop DCM as a result.
“We’re not saying don’t use these brands, we’re just telling pet owners to work directly with their veterinarians because we’re still investigating,” said Lindsay Haake, a spokesperson for the FDA.
Diet is also not the only factor in your pet’s heart health. Frequent communication and regular check-ups with your veterinarian are always a good idea, but you can also do your part by making sure your pet has proper exercise, weight management, and dental care. For more information, click here to read this blog post! And, of course, if you’re still anxious after all of this talk of cardiac problems, feel free to stop by our store or our website where we sell taurine supplements for overall heart health!
- Petwell Supply Team