My friend and my partner in Dinner PAWsible, holistic veterinarian Cathy Alinovi sent me a very sad story of what damage a pet food can cause. When you work day in and day out spreading the word that food really matters (as Dr. Cathy does), events like this just make you even more determined. Food REALLY does matter.
From Cathy Alinovi, D.V.M….
Iris has compelled me to share. Her story does not take long to tell – it’s brief and life-altering for some pet out there.
Iris came to me last week passing pure blood for stool. I’ve known her and her family for almost 2 years. We talked about food early on – they were feeding high-end kibble and a lot of people food; so I thought everything was okay.
Iris, a 6 year-old Dogue de Bordeaux, could barely stand when her family brought her in. She had just started the night before with blood-tinged stool that became pure blood overnight. Just double-checking on the food: she had been losing weight since fall, so they wanted to beef her up and started feeding Ole Yeller. Yup, not the food that happy endings and Disney fairy tales are made of, but pure corn and by-product chow.
Iris was terribly dehydrated and indeed, pure blood was coming out the back end. Gallons of IV fluids, IV antibiotics (I suspected systemic Salmonella infection), pain medication, herbs and acupuncture and we were able to stop the bleeding. Twenty four hours after the start of her hospitalization, she was drinking on her own and was no longer passing blood for feces.
Overnight, her tongue developed a crack in it – one inch long and all the way through! She didn’t bite herself – the severity of the infection in her intestinal tract split her tongue down the middle; after all, the tongue is the beginning of the intestinal tract.
Iris was not able to start eating again. Her intestines were ulcerated from end to end, not just the tip of her tongue. She had lost too much. She passed away 6 days after developing bloody stool. Her family wants to know why her, and not the other 2 dogs? May the other two not be affected.
There’s a lot of controversy out there about what’s the right thing to feed. Some of you will post and argue Iris should have been fed raw food. Some of you will argue it should have been high-quality dog food, or people food. Does it matter? A beautiful life is lost because dangerous pet food is marketed as 100% balanced and complete – implying the food is safe. What matters is we feed safe and healthy food to our pets – raw, cooked, canned or catered.
Iris’ story needs to be retold – please help others not lose their pets’ lives to poor quality pet food.
Dr. Cathy Alinovi DVM
As a practicing veterinarian, Dr. Cathy treated 80% of what walked in the door — not with expensive prescriptions — but with adequate nutrition. Now retired from private practice, her commitment to pets hasn’t waned and she looks forward to impacting many more pet parents through her books, research, speaking and consulting work. Learn more at drcathyvet.com
(from Susan) Iris, may your tragic story save other lives. Food really matters. Real food – not highly processed food masquerading to be healthy food is what pets (and people) need. Learn exactly what your pet is eating – don’t believe the advertising or the images on the label.