There has been a lot of media attention regarding the recent FDA report that suggests a link between grain free diets and the development of Heart Disease in dogs.
Sadly, we recently diagnosed our first case of suspected nutritional dilated cardiomyopathy (heart failure, caused by feeding grain-free diets).
Keeta, a four year old Golden Retriever, came in to our clinic for an examination and upon listening to Keeta’s heart, we deducted an incidental heart murmur.
Given the recent findings by the FDA, we discussed, in more detail, Keeta’s diet and confirmed that she was on one of the diets listed on the FDA website.
Although there is not currently direct evidence to link cause and effect, the research and findings are overwhelming. To play it safest, we switched Keeta to a diet that meets the WSAVA guidelines and then scheduled her for an echocardiogram (ultrasound of her heart).
The ultrasound confirmed our fear and Keeta was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy (a heart muscle disorder). We consulted with a cardiologist and started Keeta on medications to support her heart. Our hope is with treatment, and the new diet, Keeta will fully recover in time.
Currently, we recommend reading the most recent update from the FDA and if your dog is being fed one of the pet food brands most commonly named in DCM case reports, please schedule an appointment with your veterinarian for a full health assessment and nutritional consultation.
Here are some links for further information:
If you have any questions or concerns regarding the food you are feeding your pet, as always, we recommend a conversation with your veterinarian to gain their advice as part of a regular examination or other visit to your pet hospital. Our veterinarians are here to help guide you on the nutritional options available and recommend those best suited for your pet.