Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19
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    Senior Member NadiaK's Avatar
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    Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Here is the most recent update on the whole DCM issue. So glad to see that none of the foods I use for my pooch are listed on the chart. It will be interesting to see if some of the companies will change their formulas. There are some big names with many reported cases.

    https://www.fda.gov/animal-veterinar...D_Pr6UcsE#diet

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    Senior Member PatriciafromCO's Avatar
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    thank you for posting

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Thank you!

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    Senior Member Canyx's Avatar
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Thanks! I still don't see anything definitive but it's good to see all the information in one place.
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    All I'm taking from it is to stop feeding food with peas, lentils, and potatoes, which I did 8 months ago.

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    Senior Member gingerkid's Avatar
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    The list of brands is just that - a list of brands that the dogs who are included in the cases in the report were eating. Since 1) the FDA has specifically requested that veterinarians and owners report cases of DCM with suspected links to diet, 2) Acana and Zignature have both been listed by name in media blasts (thereby further motivating owners to report their dog's case), and 3) there is not accounting for market share, the names of the brands is not particularly useful.

    There has still not been any comparison to a control group. All we know is that a very small number of dogs (500/90 million) who eat grain-free diets develop DCM. We don't know what proportion of dogs who eat grain-inclusive diets develop DCM - no one is reporting that data, and without it there is no way to draw any conclusions about causality.
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Quote Originally Posted by gingerkid View Post
    The list of brands is just that - a list of brands that the dogs who are included in the cases in the report were eating. Since 1) the FDA has specifically requested that veterinarians and owners report cases of DCM with suspected links to diet, 2) Acana and Zignature have both been listed by name in media blasts (thereby further motivating owners to report their dog's case), and 3) there is not accounting for market share, the names of the brands is not particularly useful.

    There has still not been any comparison to a control group. All we know is that a very small number of dogs (500/90 million) who eat grain-free diets develop DCM. We don't know what proportion of dogs who eat grain-inclusive diets develop DCM - no one is reporting that data, and without it there is no way to draw any conclusions about causality.
    I totally agree. Plus it doesn't say what formula the dogs were eating too...

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    There is a lot of discussion that it is not just grain free foods. I did feed Cady Fromm Surf & Turf for a few years. When this all came out I switched to Fromm Gold just to be safe. Now I am actually looking to change to ProPlan sport 26/16 as a precaution. So much confusion, but I think I will switch & see how she does. This is sort of like the margarine of the 1960s. I am not panicking, but she is now 5 1/2 & was on grain free for several years.

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    Senior Member ForTheLoveOfDogs's Avatar
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Quote Originally Posted by gingerkid View Post
    The list of brands is just that - a list of brands that the dogs who are included in the cases in the report were eating. Since 1) the FDA has specifically requested that veterinarians and owners report cases of DCM with suspected links to diet, 2) Acana and Zignature have both been listed by name in media blasts (thereby further motivating owners to report their dog's case), and 3) there is not accounting for market share, the names of the brands is not particularly useful.

    There has still not been any comparison to a control group. All we know is that a very small number of dogs (500/90 million) who eat grain-free diets develop DCM. We don't know what proportion of dogs who eat grain-inclusive diets develop DCM - no one is reporting that data, and without it there is no way to draw any conclusions about causality.
    There may not be a control group, but the numbers on Acana and Zignature are still very alarming. People are checking their dogs because they are on that food.. yes. But there should be way more clear echos. I mean on the owner created data charts (non official study) Fromm was way more all over the place. Lots of clear dogs, DCM with grain free and grain inclusive.. but still lots of clear. Acana and Zignature was just.. way too alarmingly high.

    I hate to admit it but a lot of breeders feed Purina and many dogs have already been getting hearts checked for OFA before all of this with no uproar. I DO wish they were documenting clear vs not clear echos on a particular food.. but as far as I know there aren't any confirmed diet related DCM cases with it.

    We were all SO quick to believe that these (grain free and "high end" brands) were the healthiest foods because some people were "saying" that other foods could cause more health issues with no real data to back it up. And yet so many people are still refusing to believe this at least somewhat believable correlation with the DCM stuff.

    I hated the big companies. HATED them. But now my dog's are currently eating a rotation of Purina SSS and Eukanuba Sport of all things. Their coats are honestly awesome. I expected allergies to get worse.. they are the same or maybe even better. I expected nasty poo. The Eukanuba sport in particular is making less poo. Purina SSS, a little more. A lot of people switching have been surprised that their dogs have done so well. I personally just can't risk it at this point. I believe the breeders who have been having issues with grain free before all of this. I believe the stories pet owners have been sharing. I don't believe there is a conspiracy.. just people who realize marketing works really good and that peas, lentils and potatoes are still fillers (and not necessarily better ones for dogs).

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    It's not that alarming. That's 70 cases out of thousands of bags sold. And the reason why Acana and Taste of the Wild are up there is just because they are the top sellers on Chewy. And people keep saying to switch to Purina but there have been cases on Purina too.
    I disagree that 'people were saying that other foods could cause health issues with no real data'. Some ingredients in pet food here are actually banned in other countries (menadione, for example) - isn't that real data to you? I suppose that cancer is such a given in dogs now that it's ok if dogs develop it by eating the food?
    And most of the recommended foods still have a pretty low amount of meat protein in them, and I just have a hard time believing that anyone would think that it's actually an optimal dog diet.
    Last edited by Francl27; 07-01-2019 at 06:09 AM.

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    All the sport dog forums I am on are discussing this too.
    One of the things we were noticing is that quite a few of the Grain Free foods have switched from Sweet Potato base for their grain free product to Peas and Chick Peas. From these discussions I have learned that the pea base can increase the "crude Protein" on the bag but that protein is not available to the dog. A LOT of the grain free diets have gone to pea base.

    This does not impact DCM (I do not believe it does) BUT what it tells me is that Dog Food manufacturers are finding ways to cheapen ingredients to increase profits without raising prices very much (they change the color of the bag and the picture on it and that is how you know the formula has changed). Dogs might actually get more out of sweet potato than they do out of pea but I do not know that for certain.

    People spend LARGE money on manufactured dog foods and Gran Free has been the culture for quite a few years now. I think when Grain Free was relatively "new" the ingredients were better quality and the manufacturer was making money and people were spending more per bag. As quality ingredients increased in price, the manufacturers tried to come up with a way to keep (or increase ) their margin while keeping the cost to the customer "competitive." The result has been Pea base to make the crude protein seem as high and other short cuts to make it seem like the stuff we are feeding is as good as always. I do not think it is.

    The result is that the manufacturer keeps the profits. The consumer keeps buying their product because the price is competitive. The animal eating the food is the loser. Some of those animals are less able to make up the differences and health issues arise.

    I feed raw. I never thought I would. I started feeding raw when the manufactured dog food I was feeding had a recall. It was the third brand I was feeding that was recalled. After I started feeding raw there were more recalls then there was the Vitamin D toxicity issue. I put a LOT into my dogs (as most people on this forum do). I needed to have control of their food. So, with guidance from long time raw feeders, I crossed over to "the dark side." Haha!

    It is not cheaper and I am always concerned about the balance.. is there enough bone for Ca/P ratio, magnesium, manganese, iron, Vitamin levels, fat, protein and so forth. I add a supplement. I add Egg. I add whole frozen Mackerel. When I retire I will be adding Fresh Trout (if I have good luck with the fly rod). I offer non weight bearing meaty bones. I buy a pre-mix. I add liver, kidney and heart from various sources. My dog looks great but my dogs looked good on manufactured dog food as well.

    I WISH I could just buy a bag of dog food and believe it was good for my dog. I just think that my dog's well being is at the bottom of the manufacturer's concern and they are like "it's all good as long as the dog doesn't die OR if something goes wrong with the dog they cannot follow it back to the food."

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    From what I have read it could be pulses, potatoes & sweet potatoes or it could be the formulation. My first dog from 33 years ago ate Purina Dog Chow and died at 14. I would like to read more about the DCM problem in the 1970s, but haven't researched yet. Is having vegetables & fruits in dog food really good for dogs? As I stated before I may go with Proplan or perhaps Eukanuba. My 2 previous Springers started on these foods. The scary thing is that DCM isn't a problem until it is & there are probably more dogs that have died without knowing there was a problem.

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Quote Originally Posted by 3GSD4IPO View Post
    All the sport dog forums I am on are discussing this too.
    One of the things we were noticing is that quite a few of the Grain Free foods have switched from Sweet Potato base for their grain free product to Peas and Chick Peas. From these discussions I have learned that the pea base can increase the "crude Protein" on the bag but that protein is not available to the dog. A LOT of the grain free diets have gone to pea base.

    This does not impact DCM (I do not believe it does) BUT what it tells me is that Dog Food manufacturers are finding ways to cheapen ingredients to increase profits without raising prices very much (they change the color of the bag and the picture on it and that is how you know the formula has changed). Dogs might actually get more out of sweet potato than they do out of pea but I do not know that for certain.

    People spend LARGE money on manufactured dog foods and Gran Free has been the culture for quite a few years now. I think when Grain Free was relatively "new" the ingredients were better quality and the manufacturer was making money and people were spending more per bag. As quality ingredients increased in price, the manufacturers tried to come up with a way to keep (or increase ) their margin while keeping the cost to the customer "competitive." The result has been Pea base to make the crude protein seem as high and other short cuts to make it seem like the stuff we are feeding is as good as always. I do not think it is.

    The result is that the manufacturer keeps the profits. The consumer keeps buying their product because the price is competitive. The animal eating the food is the loser. Some of those animals are less able to make up the differences and health issues arise.

    I feed raw. I never thought I would. I started feeding raw when the manufactured dog food I was feeding had a recall. It was the third brand I was feeding that was recalled. After I started feeding raw there were more recalls then there was the Vitamin D toxicity issue. I put a LOT into my dogs (as most people on this forum do). I needed to have control of their food. So, with guidance from long time raw feeders, I crossed over to "the dark side." Haha!

    It is not cheaper and I am always concerned about the balance.. is there enough bone for Ca/P ratio, magnesium, manganese, iron, Vitamin levels, fat, protein and so forth. I add a supplement. I add Egg. I add whole frozen Mackerel. When I retire I will be adding Fresh Trout (if I have good luck with the fly rod). I offer non weight bearing meaty bones. I buy a pre-mix. I add liver, kidney and heart from various sources. My dog looks great but my dogs looked good on manufactured dog food as well.

    I WISH I could just buy a bag of dog food and believe it was good for my dog. I just think that my dog's well being is at the bottom of the manufacturer's concern and they are like "it's all good as long as the dog doesn't die OR if something goes wrong with the dog they cannot follow it back to the food."
    That's why the 'big 4's' use by-products and corn. It's not healthier, it's just cheaper.

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    Senior Member ForTheLoveOfDogs's Avatar
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Quote Originally Posted by Francl27 View Post
    It's not that alarming. That's 70 cases out of thousands of bags sold. And the reason why Acana and Taste of the Wild are up there is just because they are the top sellers on Chewy. And people keep saying to switch to Purina but there have been cases on Purina too.
    I disagree that 'people were saying that other foods could cause health issues with no real data'. Some ingredients in pet food here are actually banned in other countries (menadione, for example) - isn't that real data to you? I suppose that cancer is such a given in dogs now that it's ok if dogs develop it by eating the food?
    And most of the recommended foods still have a pretty low amount of meat protein in them, and I just have a hard time believing that anyone would think that it's actually an optimal dog diet.
    There have been more than that.. it's just the FDA study. And we are talking clear echos out of people that have actually checked. Dietary DCM shows no symptoms and kills slowly. Plenty of unchecked dogs in those thousands.

    I'm glad they are banning some chemicals in dog food. I hope they ban heavy peas/legumes in it too.. because clearly it isn't good. And that's not what I meant about little data to back it up. I'm talking about certain ingredients being hated for reasons (like by products for example) when they really aren't bad (and are a huge part of a raw diet). Just marketing pushing they are bad.. no real studies. Recalls aren't always bad either. It means they are actually doing something about something. (And no, I'm not defending Hill's.. I won't feed that). CHAMPION Pet Foods may not have recalls.. but they SHOULD have from a couple different issues going around. Instead they close their ears, give a generic response, and do nothing about the issue.

    As far as protein, more isn't always better and plant isn't better. Not all dogs do well on a high protein diet as it is. Even so.. Purina Pro Plan and Eukanuba Sport have 30% protein, 20% fat. Your average couch potato pet should not be eating it anyway.

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Quote Originally Posted by Francl27 View Post
    That's why the 'big 4's' use by-products and corn. It's not healthier, it's just cheaper.
    Raw feeders feed every body organ, feet, etc. By products. Peas are super cheap.. hence why they are the new "corn".

    Edit- I'm not trying to jump on the "fear train" or support the "big four" or whatever have you. But dogs have died. You would THINK a small "high quality" company would take it more seriously. I used to feed Acana. I'm not very happy with them right now.
    Last edited by ForTheLoveOfDogs; 07-01-2019 at 09:33 AM.

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Quote Originally Posted by ForTheLoveOfDogs View Post
    Raw feeders feed every body organ, feet, etc. By products. Peas are super cheap.. hence why they are the new "corn".

    Edit- I'm not trying to jump on the "fear train" or support the "big four" or whatever have you. But dogs have died. You would THINK a small "high quality" company would take it more seriously. I used to feed Acana. I'm not very happy with them right now.
    And when a company uses peas they can charge for "grain free" and be correct.. and make more money.
    The protein reported on the bag is crude protein. What we need to know is how much crude protein is digestible protein.. (same with calories and fat)

    For Raw? This morning it was Chicken thighs to one dog and a chicken leg quarter and a beef neck bone to the other dog..

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    Super Moderator RonE's Avatar
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    I didn't read the study or the list of affected foods. My own vet, who I trust completely, urged me to switch from grain-free to include at least some grain-inclusive foods, based on both the studies and personal experience in her practice and I did. My son's vet in Minneapolis, who he trusts completely, told him the studies were inconclusive and he has elected to stay with grain-free for now.

    We each have to make the decisions we're comfortable with.

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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    One of my dogs is on a full-raw diet. The other two (my parents' dogs who I care for) eat about 25-50% kibble, depending on several factors, and the rest is either cooked food or raw. My dog has been on at elast 1/2 raw for his entire life, and the other two have been eating that way for several years now. I've been watching the DCM issue carefully, despite the small proportion of my dogs' diet that kibble makes up - and the kibble they do eat is not on that list and has fared well through this whole thing so far. They all get full blood panels done yearly and everything has been perfect so far.

    Balancing a fresh diet can be difficult, especially in the beginning. But ultimately I can't imagine feeding a diet solely made up of kibble. I never liked the idea anyways, just because it is so processed, and boring on top of that. Could I theoretically live off of cereal? Probably. But would I want to do that? Would that be best for me? Nope. And that's been my dumbed-down view on kibble ever since I became old enough to understand basic nutrition. This whole issue just reaffirms to me that kibble is not the way to go. I realize that's a strong and controversial opinion, but it is my opinion. And I'm not saying Purina vs Champion or anything like that. Kibble is a fad - a fresh or raw diet is not. Even my mother, who up until recently used to tout Alpo and give me a hard time about not just free-feeding all of the dogs dry Alpo kibble, was talking to me about how fresh food might be the way to go, afterall.

    With that said, I can't afford to feed 230 pounds of dog a raw/fresh diet as this stage in my life. So my small dog gets only raw, and the big dogs get as much fresh food as possible. So I'm 100% not saying that people who feed kibble are necessarily doing anything bad or wrong or that they shouldn't - I feed kibble, too. I just think that at the end of the day, kibble is something to increase convenience for pet owners, and decrease cost of owning the pet - not the best option for the dogs themselves in most cases.

    Dog food companies are going to do whatever they can to make the most money, whether it's what they should be doing or not. Whether they are knowingly hurting our pets or not. They will only stop IF they get caught. Some companies start out with health first as their philosophy, but I can't think of a company that didn't eventually start to cut corners in one way or another. So yeah, let's say they figure out what's causing the DCM issue....they'll stop using that/those ingredient/s and be on to the next cheap thing that shouldn't be in our pets' diet in the first place.
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    Senior Member Canyx's Avatar
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    The food I'm currently feeding has potatoes, peas, and lentils. I'm not adamant about staying on it, as I'm currently seeing how Brae does. But I'm not itching to get off it based on ingredients either.
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    Senior Member NadiaK's Avatar
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    Re: Most recent update on the DCM issue. 6-27-19

    Dog Food Advisor has now updated their list of best dry foods due to the newest DCM information. You can see the list here:
    https://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/best-...dry-dog-foods/

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