Heart disease in dogs, more specifically Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM), has recently been in the news. Since 2018 the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been researching the link between dog food and cases of DCM in dogs.
As any diligent dog parent, you probably find yourself wanting to know more about DCM. To learn more about heart disease in dogs, keep reading below!
What Is Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy?
Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) is a severe heart disease that weakens heart muscles. DCM in dogs develops when the heart has trouble pumping blood throughout the circulatory system.
Over time, blood pressure inside the heart becomes so great that it enlarges. Unfortunately, DCM can later develop into congestive heart failure and death.
Some breeds like Great Danes, cocker spaniels, and boxers are prone to DCM, but research shows a dog’s breed isn’t the only cause for heart disease in dogs. Genetics, infections, and nutrition could also be factors of DCM in dogs.
DCM in dogs and Links to Food!
Of course grain-free foods and treats are popular among health-conscious dog owners. As a result of omitting grains, it’s common for some brands to supplement with peas, lentils, and potatoes.
A recent study reveals 30 compounds associated with peas were detected in food the FDA suspects of causing DCM in dogs. Researchers say not to throw out all pea products just yet! Scientists are still finding the definitive cause of DCM in dogs.
In fact, there’s suspicion that the combination of genetics and quality of ingredients also play a role. While researchers get to the bottom of DCM in dogs, you don’t have to worry about peas in any of our products! In fact, all our treats are all-natural and free of lentils and potato flour too!
What Are Symptoms of DCM in Dogs?
Heart disease in dogs can be progressive or develop rapidly. A vet conducts tests including blood, urine, chest X-rays, electrocardiogram (ECG), and using a heart monitor to diagnose DCM.
Symptoms of DCM in dogs include:
- Rapid and struggling breathing
- Struggle with exercise
- Coughing and gagging
- Sudden reclusive attitude or depression
- Restless sleep
- Extended belly (fluid buildup)
In addition, several types of drugs help with heart function and blood flow to treat DCM in dogs. Call your veterinarian if your pup shows any signs of illness and be sure to keep all annual check-ups.
Stick to the good stuff!
The FDA and scientists continue to search for causes of DCM and other types of heart disease in dogs. Stick to foods that don’t have any known allergens and don’t have links to heart disease.
You never have to worry about your pup’s heart when snacking on our treats! None of our tasty treats or CBD infused Peanut Butter contain any of the ingredients mentioned in this post. Take a look at our products page and order a pick-me-up for your pup!
Like this article? Check out the health benefits of Brewers’ Yeast for Dogs.
Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM). Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine. Accessed August 10, 2021.