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Toxic Chicken Jerky Pet Treats Pulled from Store Shelves!

Pet Treats

Story at-a-glance
  • First, the good news. Nestle Purina PetCare and Del Monte have voluntarily recalled their chicken jerky pet treats imported from China. The brands removed from store shelves are Waggin’ Train and Canyon Creek Ranch brand dog treats, along with Milo’s Kitchen Chicken Jerky and Chicken Grillers home-style dog treats.
  • Now for the not-so-good news. The reason for the recall is a potential issue of unapproved antibiotic contamination supposedly unrelated to the problem with these very same treats that has resulted in thousands of sick, and hundreds of dead pets.
  • Interestingly, it was the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets (NYSDAM) that found the antibiotic residue in the treats. They used a new, highly sensitive test to analyze the products in response to growing consumer concerns.
  • So for now, the chicken jerky treats that may have been sickening or killing pets since 2007 are no longer on store shelves. Let’s hope if they do reappear, they will be safe for your pets.

By Dr. Becker:

In a truly spectacular coincidence, the very same brands of chicken jerky treats suspected of causing sickness and death in hundreds of dogs since 2007 have now been identified as being possibly contaminated with “unapproved” antibiotics. (Apparently the antibiotics are approved for use in China, where the treats are made, and in other countries, but not in the U.S.)

According to NBC News, right after the first of the year, the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets (NYSDAM) informed the FDA it had found trace amounts of residual poultry antibiotics in several lots of Waggin’ Train and Canyon Creek Ranch brand dog treats, as well as Milo’s Kitchen Chicken Jerky and Chicken Grillers home-style dog treats.

Treats Have Been Voluntarily Recalled

Fortunately for U.S. pet owners and potential future pet victims, it seems the suggestion of antibiotic contamination was enough to prompt Nestle Purina PetCare (makers of Waggin’ Train and Canyon Creek Ranch jerky treats) and the Del Monte Corp. (makers of Milo’s Kitchen products) to voluntarily pull their chicken jerky products from store shelves across the country.

The New York agriculture agency discovered very low levels of four drugs not approved for use in U.S. poultry, and one antibiotic that is approved for use, but for which quantities are strictly limited. The antibiotics found were sulfaclozine, tilmicosin, trimethoprim, enrofloxacin and sulfaquinoxaline.

The agency used new, highly sensitive technology to detect the presence of the antibiotics. The tests on the jerky treats were conducted in response to “growing consumer concerns.”

Whatever the reason, I’m extremely thankful NYSDAM took it upon themselves to run the tests. And while discovering antibiotic residue in food products is never “good news,” I’m grateful, in this case, something was found in those treats that caused them to be pulled off the market.

Treat Manufacturers and FDA Make Predictable Public Response

Needless to say, a spokesman for Nestle Purina says the issue with the antibiotics is in no way related to the issue with these very same chicken jerky treats that have allegedly sickened over 2,200 pets and killed well over 300.

The FDA also weighed in. From the agency’s January 9 CVM update:

Based on the FDA’s review of the NYSDAM results, there is no evidence that raises health concerns, and these results are highly unlikely to be related to the reports of illnesses FDA has received related to jerky pet treats. FDA commends Del Monte and Nestle-Purina for withdrawing these products from the market in response to this product quality issue. FDA also welcomes additional information about NYSDAM’s testing methodology, which is different and reportedly more sensitive than currently validated and approved regulatory methods.

As those of you who have been following this fiasco are aware, the FDA has conducted its own “extensive” testing and has to date been unable to find anything in the chicken jerky treats that would cause pet illness or death. Consequently, the agency maintains it is unable to take action to get the treats recalled, or even to effectively warn consumers of the potential for harm to their pets.

At Least for Now, Suspect Treats Are Off Store Shelves

It’s a small victory, but one that brings a sigh of relief. Tragically, for those pet owners who lost beloved companions, the recall does not help.

According to NBC news, a woman from New York whose 2 year-old pug died suddenly in 2011 after eating Waggin’ Train chicken jerky treats, said in a statement:

"How many lives could have been saved if, six years ago, when there was first doubt that the safety of our companions was compromised, the FDA and all manufacturers of imported chicken jerky had issued a precautionary recall until the toxin was found? How much pain and suffering could have been avoided if only they had met their moral obligation six years ago and did the job the taxpayers pay them to do?"

Related:

The Dangers of Genetically Modified Ingredients in Pet Food

Pet Jerky Death Toll Update: 360 dogs, 1 Cat According to FDA

A Raw Food KIBBLE?

When Raw Food is NOT the Right Food for Your Pet

Surprise, Surprise… the Best Food for Dogs Is Homemade Food

Free Homemade Dog Food Recipes

The Importance of Bones in Your Pet’s Diet

The Nutrient Your Pet Needs More of As They Age: Protein

Pancreatitis in Dogs

Good Diet and Advice for Dogs with Pancreatitis

“Holidays Are Great and Fun To Share With Our Pets, As Long As We Avoid the No-No Foods”

Gourmet Doggie Biscuits and Some Holiday Snacking Tips

Beef Verses Bison for Dogs – Variety is critical for your pet to receive the full spectrum of amino acids, essential fatty acids, trace minerals, vitamins and antioxidants necessary to thrive.

Fatty Acids May Improve Mobility In Osteoarthritic Dogs

Pets and Toxic Plants

Natural Pet Remedies For Everyday Problems

Allergies and Springtime Ailments in Pets

Do Vaccinations Affect the Health of our Pets?

How the Pet Food Industry Has Helped Create "Carnivore Metabolic Syndrome"

Now dogs Have a Food Truck of Their Own With Bow-Wow Chow

Dysbiosis: The Root Cause of Many Other Pet Health Problems

Cancer and Your Pet: Two Things to Avoid

Now dogs Have a Food Truck of Their Own With Bow-Wow Chow

The Nutrient Your Dog Needs More of As They Age: Protein – And Expecting Your Pet to Get It from Rendered Pet Food Is the Worst of the Worst of the Worst Options!

Pupcakes

Gourmet Doggie Biscuits and Some Holiday Snacking Tips

Beef Verses Bison for Dogs – Variety is critical for your pet to receive the full spectrum of amino acids, essential fatty acids, trace minerals, vitamins and antioxidants necessary to thrive.

Chicken Jerky Recipe for dogs

WHAT HUMAN FOODS ARE UNSAFE FOR PETS? (the 12 worst)–> chocolate, sugarless gum & artificial sweeteners, alcohol, yeast dough, grapes & raisins, Macadamia nuts, onions (bad for dogs and cats… but poison for cats), garlic (for cats), caffeine, fat trimmings and bones (bad for cats and limited fat and the right bones for dogs), raw eggs (for cats, but must be careful for dogs and humans), and milk.

Some of the best human foods for dogs: peanut butter (although peanuts and peanut butter can contain mold so could be bad for humans and dogs), cheese including cottage cheese (some some dogs can be prone to be lactose intolerant like people), yogurt, watermelon, honeydew and cantaloupe, blueberries, salmon, green beans, sweet potatoes, fresh raw carrots, pumpkin, and lean meat… cooked or raw.

Did You Know There are Two Kinds of Raw Pet Food on the Market?

Megacolon: A Terrible Outcome for Constipated Pets

Resources:

Not Fit for a Dog!: The Truth About Manufactured Dog and Cat Food

See Spot Live Longer – How to help your dog live a longer and healthier life!

Raw and Natural Nutrition for Dogs: The Definitive Guide to Homemade Meals

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Keep your pets healthy and help extend their lives with:

StemPet and StemEquine – Stem Cell Enhancers for Pets

February 1, 2013 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, Dogs, Dogs, Just One More Pet, Pet Friendship and Love, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, pet products, Pet Recipes, Pets, Political Change, responsible pet ownership | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Christmas for Pet People

“A hug from a child or a lick from a pet makes everything better including the holidays!”

(Consider adopting or fostering just one more pet for the holidays… the shelters are overflowing and 2 out of 3 animals who get into the shelter system never leave there alive!)

Video: Animals of the Tube sing “Deck the Hall

Cross-Posted as part of The War on Christmas verses the Spirit of Christmas Series at AskMarion

Santa Photos With Fido or other Furry and Feathered Friends

Many places these days offer photos for pets with Santa. Some do better jobs than others!! Even within a chain like PetsMart or Petco, the quality of the photos vary with the group contracted to do the photos in individual stores. (They are often amateur volunteers sponsored/run by local rescues inside the store) And remember, most are Polaroid, so if they come out well have them copied or scan them in.

At our local Petsmart, you basically get a Polaroid of your dog sitting on Santa’s lap. Others may have a higher quality set up and better photographers, but don’t count on it. Most allow and even encourage you to be part of the photo. And some will let you snap a few shots with your own camera as well (as long as you purchase one of theirs as well).

Some local malls have special ‘pets day(s)’ with the mall Santa and even some smaller pet store chains do Santa photos. The special “pictures with Santa” days during which dogs, cats and pets in general are allowed inside the mall is usually in the evening or off hours. They are also usually sponsored by a rescue, so the proceeds go to a good cause. The pictures are usually okay, but not great. Nothing to write home about, but when you have x amount of dogs waiting in line and lots of stuff going on, even the best photographer may not manage making your dog look like Lassie, RinTinTin or the Beverly Hills Chihuahua… after all half the kiddie photos aren’t much better. But it is fun to have a photo with Santa no matter what!

Some of the photos of ourselves, our kids and our furkids with Santa aren’t the greatest, but as the years go by the old ones seem to get better and better! Winking smile And, over the years we have managed to get a few cute ones too!

Angel and Santa - Good

Some places will allow you to bring your own camera and take a shot as long as you buy their package. And definitely always, like with the human kids, be ready prepared to end up in the photo along with your pet(s).

Santa pet photos are usually with dogs, but I’ve seen people come in with cats, bunnies, ferrets, pot belly pigs, birds, and even a fish bowl but I would suggest coming in at a slow time to do that, or the cats and birds will be spooked and even try to run or fly away.  We had a greycheek, Poly, that was tame and friendly as can be that flew out the front door because she was afraid of Santa.  I did see a Santa come for the day to an exotic bird shop where people came with their large parrots and cockatoos.

Even with dogs, remember there will often be lots of dogs in line and Santa can be a scary figure to some, just like he is for some children!

Some of the best Christmas and holiday photos are done at home or better yet by a professional; in a private session.

Libby & Santa 2009 santababy

Councilman Ed Reisinger plays Santa at Locust Point Dog Park

Balzac (225 lbs) with Santa

Every Pet Santa Deserves a Tip!!

Santa PerchRocky the Ferret Kisses SantaGracie and Sahmmy with Santa

PetsMart and Santa Paws are just a few programs that take Pet Photos with Santa. Often the proceeds go to help homeless pets in shelters and rescues or to supply needy families with food and needed supplies.

Merry Christmas… the Season has begun!

Critter for Christmas Gift… Not Best Idea! unless you know the person wants a pet and which one or kind they want; taking them to the shelter, a rescue or pet store and allowing them to choose the pet is always the best idea!!

Often Photos taken at home (without Santa) are the the cutest and the least stressful!!

lillycatx-wide-communitymysterypg-vertical

Photo #5 –Where’s Apachi? and Photo #6 – Can You Find all 6???

santa-dogs

by Ask Marion/the UCLA Shutterbug

There is always room for Just One More Pet!!

Adopt a Pet This Christmas… Or Give Someone a New Friend for Christmas (or Hanukah)!

Also, a great pet and pet owner gift: StemPet and StemEquine – Stem Cell Enhancers for Pets

December 17, 2012 Posted by | Adopt Just One More Pet, Animal and Pet Photos, animals, Dogs, Dogs, Holidays With Pets, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Pet Friendship and Love, pet fun, responsible pet ownership | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Megacolon: A Terrible Outcome for Constipated Pets

Video:  Dr. Karen Becker Discusses Megacolon

By Dr. Becker

Literally speaking, “megacolon” means large colon. It’s a condition in which too much waste accumulates and causes the bowel to enlarge well beyond its normal diameter.

Megacolon is much more common in cats than dogs. It can occur in any age, breed, or sex of cat, however, most cases are seen in middle-aged male kitties – the average age is about 5.8 years.

The colon is a part of the digestive tract that starts at the cecum and ends at the rectum. The cecum is the point where the small and large intestines meet. The main job of the colon is to temporarily store waste while extracting water and salt from it, and to move feces down to the rectum in preparation for elimination.

In megacolon, the waste doesn’t pass through to the large intestine normally. For whatever reason, the colon doesn’t release its contents.

Recent studies show that cats with megacolon seem to have a defect in the ability of the muscles of the colon to contract. This causes chronic constipation and also obstipation, which is severe, unrelenting constipation that blocks the passage of both gas and waste through the colon.

So, megacolon is a terrible condition in which the large intestine is extremely dilated, has very poor motility, and there is an accumulation of fecal material that the animal can’t eliminate from his body.

Megacolon Can Be Congenital or Acquired

Megacolon can be present at birth, or it can be an acquired condition, which is more common. Animals with congenital megacolon have a lack of normal smooth muscle function through the large intestine from birth.

Acquired megacolon results when the large intestine chronically retains feces, the water has been completely resorbed out of the colon, and the feces become really hard and solid. If these masses of waste material remain for a prolonged amount of time, the colon distends and enlarges. This can result in irreversible colon inertia, which means the colon’s smooth muscle gets so stretched out and fatigued that it no longer effectively contracts to move waste down to the rectum.

Acquired megacolon can also be the result of certain dietary factors, a foreign body in the colon, lack of exercise, and, for kitties, there can be litter box and/or behavior issues that cause them to hold in feces.

Another cause can be painful defecation due to an anal gland abscess or a stricture of the anus. There can also be a narrowed pelvic canal resulting from a fracture or tumor that can cause pain on defecation.

There can be a neurologic or neuromuscular disease that prevents the animal from getting into the posture necessary for elimination, or a neurologic condition that affects the nerves that control defecation.

Metabolic disorders resulting in low potassium levels or severe dehydration can also be a factor, as can certain types of drugs. There’s also idiopathic megacolon, which means we have no idea why it occurs. It just starts happening.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Symptoms of megacolon include constipation, obstipation, infrequent elimination, straining to defecate followed by small amounts of loose stool, vomiting, loss of appetite and dehydration.

Megacolon is diagnosed based on the animal’s history and a physical exam. The vet will find a very hard colon upon palpation of the rectum and will find fecal impacts during a rectal exam.

In order to determine how severe the condition is and possible underlying causes, other tests are needed. These can include blood work, urinalysis, an ultrasound, X-rays with barium contrast studies, and also neurologic testing.

Treating Megacolon

The treatment goal for megacolon is to clean out the large intestine and identify any underlying issues that have created or contributed to the condition. The type of treatment used will depend on the severity of the problem, how long it has existed, and the underlying cause.

Many animals need to be hospitalized for IV fluid therapy and to have the colon evacuated. This can involve anesthesia so that enemas and manual extraction of feces can be accomplished. Most kitties are in too much pain to undergo these procedures without sedation, and it’s also extremely stressful for them.

Treatment of less severe cases often involves the use of laxatives to attempt to evacuate the colon. In severe recurrent cases of megacolon that can’t be managed medically, surgery may be required, but it’s only recommended if all other attempts to manage the condition have failed.

In my practice, I use a combination of chiropractic care, acupuncture, dietary change, and bowel supplements to try to manage these conditions in a non-surgical fashion.

How to Prevent Megacolon in Your Cat

As a proactive vet, I encourage my clients to try to prevent megacolon through healthy lifestyle management. A moisture-rich, species-appropriate diet and a constant supply of fresh drinking water are very important in helping to prevent dehydration. I also recommend a good-quality pet probiotic and digestive enzymes with each meal.

In order to keep your kitty well hydrated, you can try adding a little bit of water to her food. You can also consider buying a drinking fountain designed for pets. Some cats who avoid drinking still water will happily drink moving water from a fountain.

Regular exercise is very important, as is helping your pet maintain her ideal body weight.

In multi-cat households, kitties should be provided with enough litter boxes of the right size in low traffic areas with the cat’s preferred litter to encourage normal and healthy defecation. If your cat is eliminating outside the box, it’s important to not only have him checked by your veterinarian, but also to experiment with different types of litter and litter boxes. Monitor your pet’s daily “output” by regularly scooping the boxes.

Regular brushing or combing of your cat to remove loose fur and debris can help keep things moving well through the GI tract and also prevent hairballs. There are a number of natural remedies for constipation that I always recommend trying before resorting to harsher laxatives. These include psyllium husk powder or coconut fiber added to each meal, or the addition of dark green leafy veggies or cat grass (if your cat will eat them).

Remember, never use a human laxative product on kitties, and if you are using a daily hairball remedy to keep things moving along in your kitty’s GI tract, I recommend you pick a petroleum-free product to avoid adding unnecessary toxins to your pet’s body.

Love your pets?  Keep them Healthy and extend their life with:

StemPet and StemEquine – Stem Cell Enhancers for Pets

December 10, 2012 Posted by | Dogs, Dogs, Holistic Pet Health, Just One More Pet, Pets | , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Pancreatitis in Dogs

Update for all those who have asked  and sent their best wishes and prayers for Angelina… (06.27.11  8a.m.)

Thank you to all of you who have asked about her.  My husband Tim is on his way right now to pick her up at the Vet’s.  Her symptoms are better but the Vet says it takes a week before the the levels in the blood go down, so too early to test. The Vet was in the office at about 2a.m. last night and sometime between then and 7a.m. when the first of his staff come in, Angelina had managed to get out of her cone and remove her own IV.  (We warned him!) He said she didn’t like their food, the environment or the company…  Or lack thereof~  So, it was probably time to come get her. 😉

We had to take the littlest of our four pups, Angelina, to the vet today.  Turns out she has pancreatitis. Who knows why but perhaps because we are temporarily in a situation where we can’t control everything she/they eat.

Angelina is the little chocolate brown and white one. (Photo by UCLA Shutterbug)

Poor thing had to stay at the hospital because she needed an infusion of fluids.  I felt so bad. She is used to having us around plus her doggie family and there was only one other dog at the hospital… and he was knocked out suffering from liver cancer.  We left her with an IV, a cone around her neck and a pain patch in a cage all by herself.  I wanted to cry and she was crying when we left. I tried to convince the vet to let me stay and watch over both of them… keeping him from having to run over in the middle of night to check on them, but no go because of liability issues.

She kept looking at me like… Mom are you leaving me?  How could you? Are you ever coming back?  And then I felt particularly bad because I hadn’t brought her a toy or a blanket that smelled like home; never thought she’d have to stay over.  (The blanket was a clean freshly washed one,)  It made me think of all the people who just abandon or dump their pets and makes me wonder even more than I always have… How could they?

The other 3 are all moping around and the Dad of the bunch keeps walking around like he is looking for her.

M~

What Is Pancreatitis?

Pancreatitis is simply an inflammation of the pancreas and is found in animals as well as humans.

So what’s a pancreas? It’s a little gland located near the stomach.

The pancreas has two main jobs. Its first job is to produce enzymes that help digest food. Its other job is to produce insulin, which regulates the blood sugar level.

And the cause of spontaneous pancreatitis in dogs is not well understood.

Types of Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis in dogs is usually divided into chronic and acute cases.

Symptoms of chronic pancreatitis are milder and are often mistaken for other illnesses.

While chronic pancreatitis is the milder form of the two, it’s a continuing inflammatory disease that’s often accompanied by slow, irreversible damage.

Acute pancreatitis is usually more severe, but when it’s over, there’s no remaining damage to organs.

So basically, pancreatitis can be acute and only occur once in a dog’s lifetime or it can become chronic and keep returning over and over again. It can be a rapidly life threatening illness or a mild attack of pain that resolves in a few hours or a day or so.

There’s another very severe form of this condition called necrotizing pancreatitis, in which the damage is so severe that portions of the pancreas are actually destroyed. Some authors refer to this as hemorrhagic pancreatitis.

This form of pancreatitis can be fatal and requires early intervention and aggressive treatment.

Causes of Pancreatitis in Dogs

In a large number of cases, the cause of pancreatitis remains unclear.  Like with colitis, we really don’t know what causes it.

However, there are certain things that we know are associated with the disease.

Genetics.  Many dogs are just born with it or if they have parents or grandparents that suffered with it they can inherit the propensity if not the disease itself.

There was a period where vets, who were trained through a training system that was affected by large donations from the commercial pet food industry, use to think and tell people who fed their pets human food, which is actually real food, was causing or at least sparking outbreaks of pancreatitis.  But just like with pre-packaged food for humans and commercial baby food, we are realizing that we have been had. Big Pharma has controlled the medical field for humans for years and works on the same concept and formula for babies and commercial pet foods.

Cooking for your pets or feeding them a raw diet is now being taught as the healthiest diets.  Back to the way grandma great-grandma fed her pets, kids and family is finally coming back into mode.

Dogs with diets high in fat, and dogs who have recently gotten into the trash or have been fed ‘greasy’ table scraps, seem to have a higher incidence of the disease.  Ham, bacon, meat fat from our plates that we won’t or shouldn’t eat, processed hot dogs, ice cream, and greasy junk foods can cause an out break of pancreatitis.  In fact, a single high fat meal can cause pancreatitis in a dog whose normal diet is moderate or low in fat.

That’s why there’s a rash of pancreatitis cases at vet clinics around Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter every year. People just can’t resist sharing their ‘high fat’ leftovers with the family dog.

Some other factors contributing to the development of pancreatitis in dogs include:

  • Obesity
  • Trauma
  • Liver disease
  • Lack of exercise
  • Certain medications
  • Cushing’s disease
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Recent abdominal surgery
  • Blood clotting disorders
  • Long-term use of corticosteroids
  • High calcium levels in the blood
  • High triglyceride and/or cholesterol levels in the blood

But for some dogs who are genetically pre-disposed to pancreatitis it can be none of the above.

Signs and Symptoms of Pancreatitis In Dogs

The most common symptoms of pancreatitis are:

  • fever
  • lack of appetite
  • depression
  • vomiting
  • signs of abdominal pain

Other pancreatitis symptoms include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Yellow, greasy stool
  • Dehydration
    • sunken eyes
    • dry mouth
    • dry skin
  • Lethargy
  • Depression
  • Weakness
  • Irritability
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Rapid breathing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Redness of the gums
  • Signs of shock
Making a Diagnosis

Pancreatitis in dogs mimics several other conditions, making diagnosis difficult. Some of these most common “look alike” conditions are:

  • Acute gastroenteritis
  • Colitis
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Intestinal obstruction

While there is no definitive test for pancreatitis, your veterinarian will try to make a diagnosis through information obtained from:

  • Medical history (especially what your dog eats)
  • Physical exam
  • Laboratory tests
  • Radiographs (X-rays)
  • Abdominal ultrasound
  • CAT scan
  • Biopsy (occasionally)
Treatment For Pancreatitis In Dogs

The treatment your veterinarian selects will depend on the severity and duration of the illness. Dogs with a mild case of chronic pancreatitis may be treated at home, while those with a severe case of acute pancreatitis will require hospitalization and intensive care.

Resting the pancreas and gastrointestinal system is the most important key to your dog’s recovery.

That means no food or water by mouth for at least 24 hours to 48 hours.

The second major part of the treatment is the administration of large amounts of intravenous fluids.

Most dogs with pancreatitis are dehydrated from recurrent vomiting and diarrhea.

Other treatment measures include drugs to control vomiting, pain medications, and sometimes antibiotics to control or prevent bacterial infection.

Once the patient seems to feel better, he’s allowed to drink a bit of water. If he doesn’t vomit in the next 12 to 24 hours, he can graduate to solid food. He’ll probably be given small meals of a bland, easily digestible, low-fat food.

Over the course of a week or more, the amount of food can be gradually increased. Most dogs can go home once they’re able to eat and drink again.

Some dogs, if there was damage to the pancreas, may need supplemental treatment such as enzymes or insulin indefinitely.

Complications of Pancreatitis In Dogs

Dogs with severe pancreatitis can recover, but may also develop fatal complications, including:

  • Shock
  • Abnormal bleeding and clotting
  • Heart arrhythmias
  • Liver or kidney damage
  • Abdominal inflammation and fluid accumulation
  • Sepsis (internal infection from bacteria and toxins)
  • Breathing difficulties
How Can I Keep It From Happening Again?

Pancreatitis can be a very unpredictable disease. In most cases, if the attack was mild and the dog only had one episode, chances of full recovery are good. Simply avoiding high fat foods may be all that’s needed to prevent another attack and/or complications.

Most vets generally prescribe a low-fat, high-fiber diet for pancreatitis in dogs, to help speed recovery and to prevent future episodes. (Homemade chicken and rice is a great choice!)

Depending on your dog’s situation, the diet recommendations may require a change for life or he may be able to gradually return to his former food, if it’s low enough in fat and high enough in quality.

Although most dogs can eat an occasional high-fat meal without a problem, once a dog develops pancreatitis, a high-fat meal will often cause another episode.

And make sure he can’t get into the garbage!

Some vets will try to steer you toward special commercial food for dogs with pancreatitis. If you feed your pet commercially prepared food, it is probably healthier than what you are feeding now and if you feed your pets a mixture of pet food and real food, you might try this type right after the incident and see if they will eat it. But the best food you can feed your dog is homemade chicken and rice, veggies, barley and a variety of non-fatty meats, plus a high quality probiotic and a natural vitamin daily.  Natural chicken and duck type jerky strips and homemade biscuits are the best treats.

Sadly, veterinarians like MD’s know very little about nutrition.  Vet and Med schools only spend about 10-hours out of their entire training process on the subject.  Some, however, are beginning to educate themselves on this and other subjects, and once they do they all become proponents of feeding your pet real food, raw or homemade (non-greasy, non-junk) foods.  The idea that real food is human food and not good is proof of the great selling job big business and marketing firms have done and the myth they have sold the public as well as many veterinarians and vet schools.  Just look at what animals eat in the wild.  Americans are starting back on the road to common sense on this matter as well as on many others.

Holistic, natural or alternative vets are always the best choice.  They generally combine western veterinary medicine with nutritional therapy, acupuncture, chiropractic and other other holistic practices in order to treat the whole dog and the whole disease, including its root cause.

We have found that when our little Chiweenie (Chihuahua-Dachshund mix) has a flare-up from pancreatitis that a double dose of StemPets: For Dogs (and cats) helps her get back to her normal self better than anything we have found, prescription or natural, and giving it to her daily has kept her from having many flare-ups or kept them mild.

Who’s At Risk?

As with most diseases or conditions, certain dog breeds are more susceptible to pancreatitis than others. Miniature Schnauzers have a genetic susceptibility to the disease.

Other dogs that seem to be more predisposed to this condition are Yorkshire and Silky Terriers, Dachshunds, Miniature Poodles, and Cocker Spaniels.

The disease occurs usually in middle aged to older dogs, and overweight dogs are at a higher risk. It seems to affect females a little more frequently than males. Dogs with diabetes are also more at risk than others.

But it can strike any breed in any physical condition and at any age.

June 26, 2011 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Animal Related Education, animals, Chiweenie, Dogs, Holistic Pet Health, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pets, responsible pet ownership | , , , , | 25 Comments