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Low Purine Diets for dogs with Leishmaniasis

Low purine diets, does it get any more confusing?   Purines are natural substances found in plant and animal cells that are vital to the chemical structure of genes. Purines can be found in any food group (i.e. meat, vegetables, fruit etc.), but are higher in meat and fish, than other food groups.   Having spoken to many owners of dogs with Leishmaniasis, I can certainly understand their confusion. How can you put together a LOW PURINE diet that is natural and healthy for your dog, when meat is high in purines and dogs need meat?   To answer this question we need to look at why your dog is being recommended a low purine diet, and then what is actually a low purine diet for a dog?   There is ONE reason for a dog owner wanting to put their dog on a low purine diet.   Risk of Bladder/ Kidney Stones   Leishmaniasis and low purine diets for dogs   Acquired xanthinuria (bladder/ kidney stones) is a common complication in dogs that are being treated with the drug allopurinol for urate urinary tract stones or leishmaniasis.    The only reason a dog with Leishmaniasis is being recommended a low purine diet is because of the allopurinol. However it’s worth noting that allopurinol is not always necessary then nor is a low purine diet.   A dog who is in remission from Leishmaniasis should be on a management dose of allopurinol, which is taking it for ONE WEEK PER MONTH. Studies have shown that administration of allopurinol is an effective way of maintaining clinical remission in dogs with leishmaniasis. (1)    In the LeishVet guidelines: Allopurinol can be discontinued when:   

  1. The presence of complete physical and clinicopathological recovery evaluated by a thorough physical examination, CBC, full biochemistry panel and urinalysis. 
 
  1. A marked decrease of antibody levels (to negative or borderline by a quantitative serological assay). 
 
  1. If it is not possible to control or decrease the xanthinuria with low purine diets or by reducing the drug’s dosage, to avoid the risk of urolithiasis, if massive xanthine crystalluria is present.
  How to reach a point where allopurinol can be discontinued  

Diet

It has long been established that a dog’s nutritional intake is intrinsically connected to the immune response and, therefore, the progression of Leishmaniasis (2,3).  Unfortunately, the majority of tinned dog foods provide sub-optimal dietary benefits due to the fact that protein levels are lessened due to intensive food processing, denaturing proteins, reduced nutrient availability, and low-quality food sources.  As well as a low-quality, low-protein diet, obesity can also contribute to the advance of Leishmaniasis.  

Weak Immune System

Having a weakened immune system plays a crucial role in the clinical manifestations of canine Leishmaniasis and is a fundamental aspect in the development and progression of the disease (4). Both Cutaneous and Visceral Leishmaniasis protection relies on cell-mediated immunity.  

Inflammation

As inflammation is related to progressive diseases, reducing inflammation decreases the likelihood for both the emergence and resurgence of the disease (5,6,7,8). Inflammation is reduced by the specific fresh food diet plan detailed below, as well as a reduction in stress, exercise, and increased oxytocin (more time gazing lovingly at your dog) (9). Inflammation is caused by:
  • An incorrect or incomplete diet, leading to high blood sugar levels, high glycaemic carbohydrate levels, gluten sensitivity, and deficiencies in Magnesium, Zinc, and Vitamin D.
  • Obesity
  • Oxidative stress
  • Lack of exercise
  • Lack of sleep
  Dangers of long term allopurinol use   Allopurinol is associated with clinical relapse and its side effects include urinary conditions, with one study finding that 45% of dogs taking allopurinol develop urinary issues  There are also several side effects in the case of long-term usage of allopurinol, such as xanthinuria, renal mineralisation, and urolithiasis. (10,11).   How to make a low purine diet for a dog with Leishmaniasis using allopurinol?   The recommended methods of minimising the risk of urinary stone formation are:   
  • A complete fresh food diet obligatory, processed dog foods are higher purine forming compounds. Avoid all HIGH purine ingredients, see here.
 
  • Use MEAT or FISH from beef, cod chicken, duck, pork, lamb, rabbit, turkey, vension 
 
  • Dogs with a history of stones must only consume low fat meats; lean beef, cod, venison and rabbit.
  • Organ meat should be liver or heart from beef, chicken or lamb. Organ meat should only make up 5% of the diet for sensitive dogs and 10% for healthy dogs (Ideally chicken liver or lamb liver or heart) 
  • If your dog has had issues with crystals/ stones, a low fat diet should be implemented. Using appropriate, not excessive, amounts of carbohydrates (10 – 15%) and increasing meals per day if your dog is losing weight. 
   
  • Adequate hydration (some evidence suggests that bottled, distilled or filtered water can be beneficial. Techniques such using bone broth to the water to encourage more drinking can be used.
 
  • Encourage the animal to perform frequent urination (just take them out a bit more often than normal)
  Here is a list of foods and there purine content  
  1. A. F. Koutinas and C. K. Koutinas, “Pathologic mechanisms underlying the clinical findings in canine Leishmaniosis due to Leishmania infantum/chagasi,” Veterinary Pathology, vol. 51, no. 2, pp. 527–538, 2014.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  2. Malafaia, G., 2009. Protein‐energy malnutrition as a risk factor for visceral leishmaniasis: a review. Parasite immunology31(10), pp.587-596.
  3. Nweze, J.A., Nweze, E.I. and Onoja, U.S., 2020. Nutrition, malnutrition, and leishmaniasis. Nutrition73, p.110712. 
  4. J. Alvar, C. Cañavate, R. Molina, J. Moreno, and J. Nieto, “Canine leishmaniasis,” Advances in Parasitology, vol. 57, pp. 1–88, 2004.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  5. P. M. Kaye and T. Aebischer, “Visceral leishmaniasis: Immunology and prospects for a vaccine,” Clinical Microbiology and Infection, vol. 17, no. 10, pp. 1462–1470, 2011.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  6. F. Y. Liew and C. A. O'Donnell, “Immunology of leishmaniasis,” Advances in Parasitology, vol. 32, pp. 161–259, 1993.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  7. S. Hosein, D. P. Blake, and L. Solano-Gallego, “Insights on adaptive and innate immunity in canine leishmaniosis,” Parasitology, vol. 144, no. 1, pp. 95–115, 2017.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  8. C. L. Barbiéri, “Immunology of canine leishmaniasis,” Parasite Immunology, vol. 28, no. 7, pp. 329–337, 2006.View at: Publisher Site | Google Scholar
  9. https://selfhack.com/blog/supplements-lifestyle-factors-influence-tnf-interleukin-6-il-6/
  10. L. Manna, R. Corso, G. Galiero, A. Cerrone, P. Muzj, and A. E. Gravino, “Long-term follow-up of dogs with leishmaniosis treated with meglumine antimoniate plus allopurinol versus 
  11. Torres, M., Pastor, J., Roura, X., Tabar, M.D., Espada, Y., Font, A., Balasch, J. and Planellas, M., 2016. Adverse urinary effects of allopurinol in dogs with leishmaniasis. Journal of Small Animal Practice57(6), pp.299-304.
 

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Low Purine Diets for Dalmatians

Low purine diets, does it get any more confusing?   Purines are natural substances found in plant and animal cells that are vital to the chemical structure of genes. Purines can be found in any food group (i.e. meat, vegetables, fruit etc.), but are higher in meat and fish, than other food groups.   Speaking with many dogs owners, I can certainly understand their confusion. How can you put together a LOW PURINE diet that is natural and healthy for your Dalmatian, when meat is high in purines and dogs need meat?   To answer this question we need to look at why your Dalmatian is being recommended a low purine diet, and then what is actually a low purine diet for a dog?   Dalmatians are recommended low purine diets to reduce the chances of Bladder/ Kidney Stones.   Dalmatians have a genetic defect that results in excessive uric acid excreted into the urine. It then can form crystals, sludge and stones and, if large enough, can cause obstruction. (1)   THREE important pieces of information Dalmatian parents need to know are:

  • Nearly all Dalmatians have the genetic defect
  • Not all Dalmatians with the defect form stones 
  • 97% of Dalmatians who do form stones are male (females don’t need a low purine diet)
(2)   What is actually a low purine diet for a Dalmatian?   A dog is a facultative carnivore, meaning, in all aspects they are evolved to eat diets high in meat. The answer to creating a low purine diet for a dog, is not avoid meat, but to avoid HIGH purine meats and foods.    There are meats that are HIGH in purines, and meats that are MODERATELY HIGH in purines.   For example, sardines have nearly FOUR times the amount of purines as cod. Pork heart has TWICE the amount of purines as sheep heart.     How to make a low purine diet for a Dalmatian?   The recommended methods of minimising the risk of urinary stone formation are:   
  • A complete fresh food diet obligatory, processed dog foods are higher purine forming compounds. Avoid all HIGH purine ingredients, see here.
 
  • Use MEAT or FISH from beef, cod chicken, duck, pork, lamb, rabbit, turkey, vension 
 
  • Dogs with a history of stones must only consume low fat meats; lean beef, cod, venison and rabbit.
  • Organ meat should be liver or heart from beef, chicken or lamb. Organ meat should only make up 5% of the diet for sensitive dogs and 10% for healthy dogs (Ideally chicken liver or lamb liver or heart) 
  • If your dog has had issues with crystals/ stones, a low fat diet should be implemented. Using appropriate, not excessive, amounts of carbohydrates (10 – 15%) and increasing meals per day if your dog is losing weight. 
   
  • Adequate hydration (some evidence suggests that bottled, distilled or filtered water can be beneficial. Techniques such using bone broth to the water to encourage more drinking can be used.
 
  • Encourage the animal to perform frequent urination (just take them out a bit more often than normal)
  Here is a list of foods and there purine content  
  1. Sampson, E., 2011. OVERVIEW OF BACKCROSS PROJECT: NORMAL URIC ACID IN DALMATIANS.
  2. Ling GV, Franti CE, Ruby AL, Johnson DL. Urolithiasis in dogs. II: Breed prevalence, and interrelations of breed, sex, age, and mineral composition. American Journal of Veterinary Research. 1998 May;59(5):630-642. PMID: 9582969.
 

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Prescription Diet.001 | Homemade dog food for French Bulldog breed

The Truth about Prescription Dog Food

This is a review article Prescription Diets. In this review, it will touch on the following topics surrounding the Food Sensitivity diets.

  • Legal action against prescription pet food
  • The companies behind prescription diets
  • What’s in prescription dog food?
  • Why Veterinarians sell this food?
  • Research proving it's deceptive nature
  • Your next steps.
  Legal action against prescription pet food Because the foods are so low quality, their association with Vets is being considered as deceptive and their marketing as being "different to normal dog foods" as fraudulent.   MOORE V. MARS PETCARE US – California Court of Appeals 2020 "The panel concluded that under the reasonable consumer test, plaintiffs sufficiently alleged that the sale of the prescription pet food exclusively through vets or with veterinarian approval was a deceptive practice. Also, plaintiffs satisfied the heightened pleading standard for fraud because they alleged sufficient facts to show that prescription pet food and other pet food were not materially different.”   Not to mention the foods recalls due to dog deaths. In 2019, Hills had one of the biggest food recalls ever. Around 22 million cans of their food had to be recalled because Vitamin D levels in tested lots were 33 times the recommended safe limit. Attorney Nyran Rose Rasch - “We believe that hundreds, if not thousands, of pets have died or become seriously ill as a result of eating Hill’s foods with toxic levels of Vitamin D,” says The FDA investigation found that the vitamin premix had not been analysed and that the final product had not been tested to determine that it met Hill’s specific formulation. Plus, Hill’s failed to obtain certificates of analysis from the supplier of the vitamin.   Who makes the prescription diet? Hill’s (Colgate) began selling its “Prescription Diet” pet food in the 1960s through vets. In 2004, when Hill’s became a significant player in the prescription pet food market, Royal Canin (Mars) introduced its own line of prescription pet food. At an unspecified time prior to 2012, Purina (Nestle) entered the prescription pet food market. Hills – Colgate Royal Canin – Mars Purina – Nestlé Not known for their health food products or trustworthy marketing tactics.   What's in the food? Here's an example of what you might find in a diet for digestive health. For a start, prescribing a dog with digestive issues a processed food, is the equivalent of sending a human with stomach problems to McDonalds. It makes no sense.    
  • Animal by-products - animal fats, digest (see how bad these are below)
  • Brewers Rice -  Low quality carb filler, unnatural for dogs.
  • Dried whole egg – powdered egg, extremely low quality protein source
  • Maize gluten meal – Connected to allergies and intolerances by holistic vets
  Hills Digestive Care Blog.002
  • Animal by-products -  digest (see how bad these are below)
  • Caramel – “coloured with caramel”
  • Dried beet Pulp – Horse feed
  • Maize  – which dogs should not ever consume.
  • Rice and rice flour – too high in rice, high grain diets are unnatural for dogs
  Here’s a look at what can go into animal-by products: animal by products Why is it recommended by Vets? In the UK there are seven universities offering degrees in veterinary science. Nutrition however, plays a minor role in their education. The average Vet only receiving 19 hours of nutrition training for all animals. To put that into context, I’d say I’ve spent 1hr per day learning about canine nutrition (low end), 5hrs per week (not weekends) for the last 3.5 years. I’ve spent around 910hrs learning about dog nutrition, just dogs. A lack of education and chronic underfunding (or in some cases just greed), many universities are very open to external sources of revenue and are happy to accept 'sponsorship' from companies despite glaring conflicts of interest. Over the decades, The Big Three (Colgate, Mars and Nestle) have exploited this situation to develop ever closer ties with vet schools around the world, providing funding and education.   The Nutrition Textbooks The most popular text on the subject, entitled "Small Animal Clinical Nutrition" is made by Hill's. They also make the accompanying "Quick Consult" guide and the "Key to Clinical Nutrition". Royal Canin's best-known texts are the Encyclopedia of Canine Clinical Nutrition and the Encyclopedia of Feline Clinical Nutrition. It probably won't surprise you to hear that these texts are not what most people would call 'impartial' on the subject of pet food. As an example, the Canine Encyclopaedia dedicates more space to promoting Soy Protein Isolate Hydrolysate (a common Royal Canin ingredient) than it does to exploring the entire subject of home-preparing a fresh food diet. The very last sentence in the entire textbook perfectly summarises how Royal Canin consider your sick pets: "Ideally, space should be organized in such a way that owners are led to buy a new supply of food for their dog, and even to buy new products for the dog that they have not seen before (e.g., chewing bars for dental hygiene)". This book is one of the primary sources of information on pet nutrition for vets. Unfortunately, your Vet knows little to nothing about nutrition.   Evidence of how deceptive these diets are, is now coming out in canine nutrition research:
  • 13/14 Vet foods use for food elimination diets contain ingredients that weren’t on the label. (1)
  • 7/8 Vet diets use for weight loss were deficient in nutrients according to guidelines. (2)
  Your next steps The power of food is that it can make a dog healthier. Just like with us humans, when we start eating a super healthy diet, it undoes the damage of an unhealthy diet. Let's sort out a diet that works for your dog. Get in touch, help@thedognutritionist.com to speak to Cam Wimble (certified dog nutritionist)   References
  • Ricci, R., Conficoni, D., Morelli, G. et al.Undeclared animal species in dry and wet novel and hydrolyzed protein diets for dogs and cats detected by microarray analysis. BMC Vet Res 14, 209 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12917-018-1528-7
  • Olivindo, Rodrigo FG, et al. "Evaluation of the nutrients supplied by veterinary diets commercialized in Brazil for obese dogs undergoing a weight loss program." Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition.

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Blog-cover | Diet for Digestion | Homemade dog food for Pomeranian

Hill's Digestive Care Dry & Wet Dog Food Review

This is a review article of the Digestive Care diets produced by Hill’s, both the dry and wet food. In this review, it will touch on the following topics surrounding the Food Sensitivity diets.

  • Legal action against prescription pet food
  • The companies behind prescription diets
  • What’s in Urinary care dog food?
  • Why Veterinarians sell this food?
  • Your next steps.
  Legal action against prescription pet food Because the foods are so low quality, their association with Vets is being considered as deceptive and their marketing as being "different to normal dog foods" as fraudulent.   MOORE V. MARS PETCARE US – California Court of Appeals 2020 "The panel concluded that under the reasonable consumer test, plaintiffs sufficiently alleged that the sale of the prescription pet food exclusively through vets or with veterinarian approval was a deceptive practice. Also, plaintiffs satisfied the heightened pleading standard for fraud because they alleged sufficient facts to show that prescription pet food and other pet food were not materially different.”   Not to mention the foods recalls due to dog deaths. In 2019, Hills had one of the biggest food recalls ever. Around 22 million cans of their food had to be recalled because Vitamin D levels in tested lots were 33 times the recommended safe limit. Attorney Nyran Rose Rasch - “We believe that hundreds, if not thousands, of pets have died or become seriously ill as a result of eating Hill’s foods with toxic levels of Vitamin D,” says The FDA investigation found that the vitamin premix had not been analysed and that the final product had not been tested to determine that it met Hill’s specific formulation. Plus, Hill’s failed to obtain certificates of analysis from the supplier of the vitamin.   Who makes the prescription diet? Hill’s (Colgate) began selling its “Prescription Diet” pet food in the 1960s through vets. In 2004, when Hill’s became a significant player in the prescription pet food market, Royal Canin (Mars) introduced its own line of prescription pet food. At an unspecified time prior to 2012, Purina (Nestle) entered the prescription pet food market. Hills – Colgate Royal Canin – Mars Purina – Nestlé Not known for their health food products or trustworthy marketing tactics.   What's in the food?    
  • Animal by-products - animal fats, digest (see how bad these are below)
  • Brewers Rice -  Low quality carb filler, unnatural for dogs.
  • Dried whole egg – powdered egg, extremely low quality protein source
  • Maize gluten meal – Connected to allergies and intolerances by holistic vets
  Hills Digestive Care Blog.002
  • Animal by-products -  digest (see how bad these are below)
  • Caramel – “coloured with caramel”
  • Dried beet Pulp – Horse feed
  • Maize  – which dogs should not ever consume.
  • Rice and rice flour – too high in rice, high grain diets are unnatural for dogs
  Here’s a look at what can go into animal-by products: animal by products Why is it recommended by Vets? In the UK there are seven universities offering degrees in veterinary science. Nutrition however, plays a minor role in their education. The average Vet only receiving 19 hours of nutrition training for all animals. To put that into context, I’d say I’ve spent 1hr per day learning about canine nutrition (low end), 5hrs per week (not weekends) for the last 3.5 years. I’ve spent around 910hrs learning about dog nutrition, just dogs. A lack of education and chronic underfunding (or in some cases just greed), many universities are very open to external sources of revenue and are happy to accept 'sponsorship' from companies despite glaring conflicts of interest. Over the decades, The Big Three (Colgate, Mars and Nestle) have exploited this situation to develop ever closer ties with vet schools around the world, providing funding and education.   The Nutrition Textbooks The most popular text on the subject, entitled "Small Animal Clinical Nutrition" is made by Hill's. They also make the accompanying "Quick Consult" guide and the "Key to Clinical Nutrition". Royal Canin's best-known texts are the Encyclopedia of Canine Clinical Nutrition and the Encyclopedia of Feline Clinical Nutrition. It probably won't surprise you to hear that these texts are not what most people would call 'impartial' on the subject of pet food. As an example, the Canine Encyclopaedia dedicates more space to promoting Soy Protein Isolate Hydrolysate (a common Royal Canin ingredient) than it does to exploring the entire subject of home-preparing a fresh food diet. The very last sentence in the entire textbook perfectly summarises how Royal Canin consider your sick pets: "Ideally, space should be organized in such a way that owners are led to buy a new supply of food for their dog, and even to buy new products for the dog that they have not seen before (e.g., chewing bars for dental hygiene)". This book is one of the primary sources of information on pet nutrition for vets. Unfortunately, your Vet knows little to nothing about nutrition.   Your next steps The power of food is that it can make a dog healthier. Just like with us humans, when we start eating a super healthy diet, it undoes the damage of an unhealthy diet. Read my blog post on making homemade diets for dogs with digestive issues Or check out my specifically formulated recipe book, for every dog and their specific stage. The healthiest and most cost effective way to feed your dog is homemade food.

Read more
Cover-blog-Diet for Digestion | homemade puppy food

Hills Food Sensitivities Dry & Wet Dog Food Review

This is a review article of the Food Sensitivity diets produced by Hill’s, both the dry and wet food. In this review, it will touch on the following topics surrounding the Food Sensitivity diets.

  • Legal action against prescription pet food
  • The companies behind prescription diets
  • What’s in Urinary care dog food?
  • Why Veterinarians sell this food?
  • Your next steps.
  Legal action against prescription pet food Because the foods are so low quality, their association with Vets is being considered as deceptive and their marketing as being "different to normal dog foods" as fraudulent.   MOORE V. MARS PETCARE US – California Court of Appeals 2020 "The panel concluded that under the reasonable consumer test, plaintiffs sufficiently alleged that the sale of the prescription pet food exclusively through vets or with veterinarian approval was a deceptive practice. Also, plaintiffs satisfied the heightened pleading standard for fraud because they alleged sufficient facts to show that prescription pet food and other pet food were not materially different.”   Not to mention the foods recalls due to dog deaths. In 2019, Hills had one of the biggest food recalls ever. Around 22 million cans of their food had to be recalled because Vitamin D levels in tested lots were 33 times the recommended safe limit. Attorney Nyran Rose Rasch - “We believe that hundreds, if not thousands, of pets have died or become seriously ill as a result of eating Hill’s foods with toxic levels of Vitamin D,” says The FDA investigation found that the vitamin premix had not been analysed and that the final product had not been tested to determine that it met Hill’s specific formulation. Plus, Hill’s failed to obtain certificates of analysis from the supplier of the vitamin.   Who makes the prescription diet? Hill’s (Colgate) began selling its “Prescription Diet” pet food in the 1960s through vets. In 2004, when Hill’s became a significant player in the prescription pet food market, Royal Canin (Mars) introduced its own line of prescription pet food. At an unspecified time prior to 2012, Purina (Nestle) entered the prescription pet food market. Hills – Colgate Royal Canin – Mars Purina – Nestlé Not known for their health food products or trustworthy marketing tactics.   What's in the food?
Images .001  
  • Chicken liver hydrolysate - powdered chicken liver (animal by-product, see details below)
  • Dried beet Pulp – Horse feed
  • Maize  – which dogs should not ever consume, connected to allergies and intolerances by holistic vets
  • Soybean oil – Soy connected to allergies and intolerances by holistic vets.
  Images .002
  • Chicken liver hydrolysate - powdered chicken liver (animal by-product, see details below)
  • Dried beet Pulp – Horse feed
  • Maize  – which dogs should not ever consume.
  • Soybean oil – Soy connected to allergies and intolerances by holistic vets
  Here’s a look at what can go into animal-by products: animal by products Why is it recommended by Vets? In the UK there are seven universities offering degrees in veterinary science. Nutrition however, plays a minor role in their education. The average Vet only receiving 19 hours of nutrition training for all animals. To put that into context, I’d say I’ve spent 1hr per day learning about canine nutrition (low end), 5hrs per week (not weekends) for the last 3.5 years. I’ve spent around 910hrs learning about dog nutrition, just dogs. A lack of education and chronic underfunding (or in some cases just greed), many universities are very open to external sources of revenue and are happy to accept 'sponsorship' from companies despite glaring conflicts of interest. Over the decades, The Big Three (Colgate, Mars and Nestle) have exploited this situation to develop ever closer ties with vet schools around the world, providing funding and education.   The Nutrition Textbooks The most popular text on the subject, entitled "Small Animal Clinical Nutrition" is made by Hill's. They also make the accompanying "Quick Consult" guide and the "Key to Clinical Nutrition". Royal Canin's best-known texts are the Encyclopedia of Canine Clinical Nutrition and the Encyclopedia of Feline Clinical Nutrition. It probably won't surprise you to hear that these texts are not what most people would call 'impartial' on the subject of pet food. As an example, the Canine Encyclopaedia dedicates more space to promoting Soy Protein Isolate Hydrolysate (a common Royal Canin ingredient) than it does to exploring the entire subject of home-preparing a fresh food diet. The very last sentence in the entire textbook perfectly summarises how Royal Canin consider your sick pets: "Ideally, space should be organized in such a way that owners are led to buy a new supply of food for their dog, and even to buy new products for the dog that they have not seen before (e.g., chewing bars for dental hygiene)". This book is one of the primary sources of information on pet nutrition for vets. Unfortunately, your Vet knows little to nothing about nutrition.   Your next steps The power of food is that it can make a dog healthier. Just like with us humans, when we start eating a super healthy diet, it undoes the damage of an unhealthy diet. Read my blog post on making homemade diets for dogs with allergies and food sensitivities. Or check out my specifically formulated recipe book, for every dog and their specific stage. The healthiest and most cost effective way to feed your dog is homemade food.

Read more
Blog.001 | Dog nutritionist

Hills Urinary Dry & Wet Dog Food Review

This is a review article of the Urinary care diets produced by Hill’s, both the dry and wet food. In this review, it will touch on the following topics surrounding the Urinary care diets.

  • Legal action against prescription pet food
  • The companies behind prescription diets
  • What’s in Urinary care dog food?
  • Why Veterinarians sell this food?
  • Your next steps.
  Legal action against prescription pet food Because the foods are so low quality, their association with Vets is being considered as deceptive and their marketing as being "different to normal dog foods" as fraudulent.   MOORE V. MARS PETCARE US – California Court of Appeals 2020 "The panel concluded that under the reasonable consumer test, plaintiffs sufficiently alleged that the sale of the prescription pet food exclusively through vets or with veterinarian approval was a deceptive practice. Also, plaintiffs satisfied the heightened pleading standard for fraud because they alleged sufficient facts to show that prescription pet food and other pet food were not materially different.”   Not to mention the foods recalls due to dog deaths. In 2019, Hills had one of the biggest food recalls ever. Around 22 million cans of their food had to be recalled because Vitamin D levels in tested lots were 33 times the recommended safe limit. Attorney Nyran Rose Rasch - “We believe that hundreds, if not thousands, of pets have died or become seriously ill as a result of eating Hill’s foods with toxic levels of Vitamin D,” says The FDA investigation found that the vitamin premix had not been analysed and that the final product had not been tested to determine that it met Hill’s specific formulation. Plus, Hill’s failed to obtain certificates of analysis from the supplier of the vitamin.   Who makes the prescription diet? Hill’s (Colgate) began selling its “Prescription Diet” pet food in the 1960s through vets. In 2004, when Hill’s became a significant player in the prescription pet food market, Royal Canin (Mars) introduced its own line of prescription pet food. At an unspecified time prior to 2012, Purina (Nestle) entered the prescription pet food market. Hills – Colgate Royal Canin – Mars Purina – Nestlé Not known for their health food products or trustworthy marketing tactics.   What's in the food? Urinary Food Blog.001
  • Animal by-products - animal fats, digest (see how bad these are below)
  • Brewers Rice -  Low quality carb filler, unnatural for dogs.
  • Dried whole egg – powdered egg, extremely low quality protein source
  • Maize starch– Maize connected to allergies and intolerances by holistic vets
  • Soybean Oil – Soy connected to allergies and intolerance by holistic vets
    Urinary Food Blog.002
  • Animal by-products - Animal fats (see how bad these are below)
  • Dried egg – Powdered egg is not a quality protein.
  • Maize starch  – connected to allergies and intolerances by holistic vets.
  • Rice and rice flour – too high in rice, high grain diets are unnatural for dogs
  • Various sugars - ???
  Here’s a look at what can go into animal-by products: animal by products Why is it recommended by Vets? In the UK there are seven universities offering degrees in veterinary science. Nutrition however, plays a minor role in their education. The average Vet only receiving 19 hours of nutrition training for all animals. To put that into context, I’d say I’ve spent 1hr per day learning about canine nutrition (low end), 5hrs per week (not weekends) for the last 3.5 years. I’ve spent around 910hrs learning about dog nutrition, just dogs. A lack of education and chronic underfunding (or in some cases just greed), many universities are very open to external sources of revenue and are happy to accept 'sponsorship' from companies despite glaring conflicts of interest. Over the decades, The Big Three (Colgate, Mars and Nestle) have exploited this situation to develop ever closer ties with vet schools around the world, providing funding and education.   The Nutrition Textbooks The most popular text on the subject, entitled "Small Animal Clinical Nutrition" is made by Hill's. They also make the accompanying "Quick Consult" guide and the "Key to Clinical Nutrition". Royal Canin's best-known texts are the Encyclopedia of Canine Clinical Nutrition and the Encyclopedia of Feline Clinical Nutrition. It probably won't surprise you to hear that these texts are not what most people would call 'impartial' on the subject of pet food. As an example, the Canine Encyclopaedia dedicates more space to promoting Soy Protein Isolate Hydrolysate (a common Royal Canin ingredient) than it does to exploring the entire subject of home-preparing a fresh food diet. The very last sentence in the entire textbook perfectly summarises how Royal Canin consider your sick pets: "Ideally, space should be organized in such a way that owners are led to buy a new supply of food for their dog, and even to buy new products for the dog that they have not seen before (e.g., chewing bars for dental hygiene)". This book is one of the primary sources of information on pet nutrition for vets. Unfortunately, your Vet knows little to nothing about nutrition.     Your next steps The power of food is that it can make a dog healthier. Just like with us humans, when we start eating a super healthy diet, it undoes the damage of an unhealthy diet. Read my blog post on making homemade diets for dogs with Urinary disease. Or check out my specifically formulated recipe book, for every dog and their specific stage. The healthiest and most cost effective way to feed your dog is homemade food.

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Is Yogurt Good For Dogs?

The trend of feeding yogurt to dogs is becoming popular. Yogurt is tasty and contains calcium, protein, and probiotics. In this blog, we will look at some considerations of giving yogurt to your dogs and puppies. Let’s get started!

Is yogurt safe for dogs?

Dogs don't need dairy once they are weaned. Dogs can eat yogurt but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they should. While yogurt is not toxic to dogs, many dogs will have trouble digesting it. The best kind of yogurt is plain or even non-fat plain. You need to check the ingredients first. "Non-fat plain yogurt is safe for dogs in small amounts. Too much yogurt or the wrong type of yogurt can cause some health problems" says Laura Robinson.

Few considerations before giving yogurt to dogs

While plain yogurt is not toxic to dogs, many dogs have difficulty digesting yogurt and other dairy products. Here are a few things that you must look at before giving yogurt to your pooch:
  • Before feeding yogurt to your dog, you need to make sure your furry friend is not allergic to lactose. If your dog is lactose intolerant, it may experience digestive upset when it eats yogurt. Symptoms of lactose intolerance include diarrhea, constipation, flatulence, nausea, or stomach cramps.
  • How much yogurt you feed your dog should be based on the ten percent treat rule. The right serving size for dogs varies based on the kind of yogurt and your dog’s size, weight, daily calorie intake, underlying health issues, and activity level.
  • If you are going to feed your dog yogurt, it should be plain and free of any added sweeteners, both natural and artificial. Some yogurts labeled "sugar-free" will likely contain a sugar substitute like xylitol. Always make sure the yogurt contains no xylitol which is toxic to dogs.
  • You need to be concerned with the fat content in yogurt. Dogs can't handle large amounts of fats. Any time you give your dog too much fat, it can suffer from stomach upset or even pancreatitis.
  • Yogurt can cause dangerously high levels of calcium and magnesium, which can result in seizures, G.I. upset, and heart issues.
Limiting excessive intake of yogurt can help prevent digestive upset. If you would like to share yogurt with your pup, give her a small amount and see if she handles it without any problems.

Are the probiotics in yogurt good for dogs?

Probiotics are good for both you and your furry companion. Adding probiotics to your dog’s diet can be an important part of keeping his immune system strong.  Your dog needs specific probiotic strains that are beneficial for them. There are many ways to give your dog healthy bacteria and yogurt is a popular choice.  If you’re feeding yogurt for the probiotics, it isn’t the best way to get these friendly bacteria into your dog. A moderate amount of yogurt won’t be enough to get many probiotic benefits from its active cultures.  sara cervera 4caIPcmVDII unsplash

Conclusion

It is undeniable that your dog will enjoy the taste of yogurt. As a responsible pet parent, you must ensure to satisfy their tastes wisely and safely.  Yogurt falls within the "ten percent" rule that's often used by veterinarians. Even as a treat, yogurt isn’t a great healthy food for dogs. So, next time you think of yogurt as a probiotic for dogs, take a pass. There are better sources of probiotics for dogs. Did you find this article useful? Feel free to share your thoughts. We would be happy to hear from you!   References Ripley, Katherine. (2015) 'Can Dogs Eat Yogurt?', AKC, 11 May, Available at https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/can-dogs-eat-yogurt/ (Accessed 24 January 2022) https://www.dailypaws.com/dogs-puppies/dog-nutrition/what-can-dogs-eat/can-dogs-eat-yogurt (Accessed 24 January 2022) Grewal, Gogi. (2022) 'Is Yogurt Good For Dogs?', DogsNaturallyMagazine, 4 January, Available at https://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/can-dogs-eat-yogurt-probiotics/ (Accessed 24 January 2022) Lesser, Jennifer. (2021) 'Can Dogs Eat Yogurt?', The Spruce Pets, 5 April, Available at https://www.thesprucepets.com/can-dogs-eat-yogurt-4802021 (Accessed 24 January 2022) El-Abbadi, Naglaa Hani et al. 'Yogurt: role in healthy and active aging', The American journal of clinical nutrition, 2014, 99(5), pp. 1263S–1270S Some Pets Unable to Tolerate Dairy Products. Canadian Veterinary Medical Association, 2012 People Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pets. ASPCA Animal Poison Control, Available at https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/people-foods-avoid-feeding-your-pets?ms=MP_PMK_GGPoisonControl (Accessed 24 January 2022) Clinical Nutrition Team. (2016), 'What are safe and healthy treats for my pet?', Vet Nutrition, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, 5 January, Available at https://vetnutrition.tufts.edu/2016/01/what-are-safe-and-healthy-treats-for-my-pet/ (Accessed 24 January 2022)  

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Are Green Beans Good For Dogs

Green beans are a healthy vegetable that go by many different names, like string beans, French beans, or snap beans. Can you feed your dog green beans? Well, green beans are safe for dogs to eat, as long as they are plain. Green beans themselves are not only safe for dogs, many nutritionists and veterinarians also recommend them as a healthy treat. Best of all, dogs seem to love them.

Can I feed my dog green beans?

Green beans are an excellent source of nutrition for your dog. They contain a good amount of several vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to your dog's health. Dogs can eat green beans as a treat or food topping in moderate amounts.  Here are some green bean hazards to avoid:
  • Canned green beans with added salt. Check the label on canned green beans; many manufacturers add sodium
  • Green beans cooked with oils 
  • Green beans cooked with spices or other seasonings
  • Green beans cooked with harmful vegetables, such as garlic and onions
  • Feeding large, whole green beans to small puppies, which can be a choking hazard
Pet Parent Tip: Any new food should be introduced into your dog’s diet gradually. You must monitor your fur buddy for adverse effects like digestive upsets, food sensitivities, and allergic reactions.

Benefits of eating green beans for dogs

If green beans are given in moderate amounts, they've nutritional benefits for dogs. Let's have a look at some of the benefits of green beans for dogs:
  • Green beans are a good source of complex carbohydrates. They serve as a key energy source for your dog.
  • There is almost no fat in green beans, which makes them a naturally fat-free food.
  • Green beans are an excellent source of several vitamins and minerals. They provide your dog with several key nutrients, such as vitamin A, B, C, and K.
  • They support your dog’s immune health and also help with eye and skin health. Green beans are also important in bone and teeth formation.
  • Green beans contain fiber that promotes gut health and motility.
  • Green beans have antioxidant properties, so they help control inflammation and slow your dog’s aging process.
Green beans nutrition fact The nutrition facts for 1 cup (100 grams) of green beans:
Calories31
Fat0.2 grams
Protein 1.8 grams
Carbs7 grams
Sugar3.3 grams
Fiber2.7 grams
Sodium6 mg 
  This combination makes them an ideal food for a diet promoting a balanced weight.

Can green beans help dogs lose weight? 

Giving your dog green beans instead of half its regular food isn't the answer to help dogs lose weight. That won’t provide your dog with a balanced diet and it might miss out on key nutrients its body needs. Giving green beans as a treat in place of conventional biscuits can help your dog lose weight, as long as you are also taking action to increase his exercise and moderate his regular diet. Feeding green beans will not help your dog lose weight if he is not getting enough exercise and is consuming inappropriate calories for his age, breed, and lifestyle.

Green beans - perfect healthy treat

If, however, you are just looking for a healthy, low-calorie treat to feed Fido, green beans are an excellent option. As with any treat, try not to exceed 10 percent of your dog's daily diet, and watch for any signs of stomach upset or allergic reactions.
  • Excessive intake of green beans by dogs may lead to an upset stomach and even vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Some dogs have allergies, food intolerances, and sensitivities related to green beans. It may have adverse effects on their appetite. 
If your dog shows any signs of stomach upsets, you should take your dog immediately to the vet and get them checked. Always ensure a complete and balanced diet for your furry pal. 

Final thoughts - should dogs eat green beans 

The bottom line on feeding green beans to dogs? Moderation is the key. Remember, green beans are not toxic but your dog might not be able to digest its excessive amount. Feeding a huge quantity of green beans may cause some unpleasant side effects like upset stomach, diarrhea, or vomiting. Today many pet owners are preparing the food themselves for their dogs. This way, they know exactly what goes into their pet's diets. As a responsible dog parent, you must be aware of which human food is safe or toxic for your dog. Does your dog enjoy eating green beans? Feel free to share your thoughts. We would be happy to hear from you!   References  Frey, Malia. (2021) 'Green Bean Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits', VeryWellFit, 7 August, Available at https://www.verywellfit.com/green-beans-nutrition-facts-calories-carbs-and-health-benefits-4169523 (Accessed 25 January 2022) Burke, Anna. (2017) 'Can Dogs Have Green Beans?', AKC, 24 May, Available at https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/can-dogs-have-green-beans/ (Accessed 25 January 2022) Mueller, Laura. (2020) 'Can Dogs Eat Green Beans?', The Spruce Pets, 24 February, Available at https://www.thesprucepets.com/dogs-eat-green-beans-4796742 (Accessed 25 January 2022) Alexander, Vivien. (2021) 'Green Beans? Are Green Beans Safe For Dogs?', Dogtime, 28 January, Available at https://dogtime.com/dog-health/dog-food-dog-nutrition/70935-can-dogs-eat-green-beans-safe/amp (Accessed 25 January 2022) Walter, Richard. 'Can Dogs Eat Green Beans? Here's Everything You Need to Know', Pawlicy Advisor, Available at https://www.pawlicy.com/blog/can-dogs-eat-green-beans/ (Accessed 25 January 2022) Unger, Julie. (2021), Are Green Beans Really Good For Dogs?', DogsNaturallyMagazine, 11 December, Available at https://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/can-dogs-eat-green-beans/ (Accessed 25 January 2022)

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Why Organ Meat Is Important For The Raw Fed Dog

Organ meats are a vital part of a complete and balanced diet for your dog. Muscle meat and bone are lacking in many important nutrients. Organ meats provide essential nutrients that are not found in muscle meat.  Dogs can eat all organs if they are coming from a healthy and properly raised animal. Organ meats are best fed raw. Feeding raw organ meat will ensure that your dog gets all the temperature sensitive nutrients present in the organs.

Why does your raw fed dog need organ meat?

Here are some of the benefits of feeding organ meat to your raw fed dog:
  • Organ meats have higher levels of B vitamins such as: B1, B2, B6, folic acid and vitamin B12. They also provide the important fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K.
  • Organ meats are also rich in minerals including phosphorus, iron, copper, magnesium and iodine.
  • Organ meats also contain high amounts of the essential fatty acids such as arachidonic acid and omega-3.
  • It helps tissues in a dog's body to function properly.
  • Organ meat helps the body break down carbohydrates, fats, and proteins to produce energy.
  • It plays a significant role in making red blood cells and neurotransmitters and keeps blood cells healthy
  • Organ meat is great for DNA health and is used by the body to manufacture DNA.
  • It benefits brain health, heart health, manages arthritis and maintains a healthy skin and coat.

Healthy organ meats for dogs

Healthy organ meats for dogs include brain, heart, kidney, liver, lung, reproductive organs, trachea, spleen, stomach, and tongue. All organ meats are very rich in nutrients. You can give your dog’s raw diet a boost by adding a few of the more commonly available organs.
  • Liver: It is loaded with protein, iron, B vitamins, vitamin A, CoQ10 and essential fatty acids. Eating liver improves joint health and is great for dogs who suffer from arthritis. The essential fatty acids improve coat health of dogs. Since it is so densely packed with iron, it’s also effective in treating anemic animals.
  • Heart: The heart is both a muscle and an organ that gives your dogs an extra punch of protein and vitamins. Heart meat is an excellent source of B vitamins, iron and essential fatty acids. It also contains phosphorus that helps build and strengthen your dog’s skeletal system. The folate found in heart meat is great for DNA health and can help prevent anemia and IBD in dogs. Beef heart also contains selenium, phosphorus and zinc, along with essential amino acids that help build muscle, store energy and boost stamina and endurance.
  • Kidney: Kidney meat provides a wide range of vitamins to dogs, including vitamins A, B12, E and K. Kidney meat helps prevent anemia in dogs. It contains iron which acts as an antioxidant and helps carry oxygen throughout the body.

Final thoughts 

Overall, organ meats should make up about 15% of your dog’s total diet. Each organ will provide its own unique set of vitamins and minerals. The more organs you add to the raw diet of your dog, the better the mix of nutrients your dog will receive. Just make sure you add a wide variety of organ meats to your dog's raw diet. No single organ should account for more than 5% to 10% of your dog's total diet.   References Taffer, Marissa. (2021), 'Can Dogs Eat Organ Meat? Learn the Benefits', The Ollie, 18 February, Available at https://blog.myollie.com/the-benefits-of-organ-meats-for-dogs/ (Accessed 16 January 2022) Wittich, Marko. (2019), 'Omega-3 for Dogs: What is it? Benefits, Sources and Dosage', Campfire Treats, 25 June, Available at https://campfiretreats.com/blogs/campfire-tales/omega-3-for-dogs (Accessed 16 January 2022) Roush, JK., et al. 'Multicenter Veterinary Practice Assessment of the Effects of Omega-3 Fatty Acids on Osteoarthritis in Dogs', JAVMA, 2010, 236(1).  'Is Organ Meat Good For Dogs?', Cali Raw Nutrition, 12 October, Available at https://www.caliraw.com/blogs/news/is-organ-meat-for-dogs-good (Accessed 16 January 2022) Pompala, RE., et al. 'Empty Body Weights, Carcass Weights and Offal Proportions in Bulls and Steers of Different Mature Size', Canadian Journal of Animal Science, 1984, 64, pp. 53-57. Scott, Dana. (2021), 'Why Organ Meat Is Important For The Raw Fed Dog', Dogs Naturally Magazine, 16 December, Available at https://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/why-organ-meat-is-important-for-the-raw-fed-dog/ (Accessed 16 January 2022) 'Organ Meat In A Raw Diet', The Raw Feeding Community, Available at https://therawfeedingcommunity.com/2017/12/23/organ-meat-in-a-raw-diet/ (Accessed 16 January 2022)  

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Home Remedy For Yeast Infection In Dogs

A yeast infection in dogs occurs when a fungus grows and multiplies, causing skin redness, itching, scaling, and even an odor that is obvious to most dog owners. Dogs are most likely to develop either yeast dermatitis or yeast otitis but some dogs may even have both types of yeast infections at the same time.

How is yeast infection diagnosed?

Yeast infection generally strikes the paws, skin folds, or ears, where yeast have a cozy space to grow. These infections are easy to diagnose and usually respond well to a topical treatment. Some dogs may develop both bacterial and yeast infections at the same time. Always make sure you dry your pooch thoroughly after they get out of the water and keep excess hair trimmed to prevent yeast infection.

Helping a dog with yeast infection

There are a few things you can do to help your dog if it has a yeast infection. There are many natural ways to decrease the effects of yeast infection. You can try some amazing natural remedies as well instead of medications. Many of these remedies are often used alongside prescription therapies recommended by your vet. Some remedies may help to battle a mild yeast infection all on their own.  
  • Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is acidic and also has some healing properties. It changes the pH of your dog's skin so that the yeast cannot grow when it is applied topically. A solution of half apple cider vinegar and half water can be used on the infected areas. Spray it on to your dog's whole body and then just let it dry without rinsing it off. Apple cider vinegar can also be added to food or water to fight any internal germs linked to the original yeast problem.  
  • Coconut oil
Treat all affected areas with coconut oil. Coconut oil contains antibacterial properties that are proven to fight against yeast infections. It can be applied directly to all of the areas having yeast infection. Use enough of coconut oil to rub on the paws, in the underarms, and on the inside of the ear flaps. A coconut oil rub can be repeated daily until you see results.
  • Reduce the amount of heavy metals your dog consumes 
Another way to treat a yeast infection is to reduce the amount of heavy metals your dog consumes. Yeast has a special affinity for most heavy metals, especially mercury. These heavy metals generate free radicals that can cause severe health issues in dogs. Heavy metals are toxic to competing bacteria. Your dog’s immune system doesn’t do a good job of removing heavy metals. The heavy metals can reduce the population of the competing bacteria resulting in the outgrowth of yeast. Therefore, if you want to stop a yeast infection in dogs, you must reduce the number of heavy metals it consumes. Fiber and foods rich in Sulphur can do a good job to remove the heavy metals.  
  • Kefir
Kefir is a fermented milk drink and is used as a home remedy for yeast infections in dogs. It is a combination of live bacteria and yeast fermentation, much like yogurt. It contains plenty of natural probiotics that helps in diminishing yeast overgrowth. Kefir can be introduced into your dog’s diet and can be mixed with fruits or veggies to add flavor and make it more appealing. It also contains Vitamin B, minerals and protein.    
  • A good bath
One easy yet important home remedy for yeast infections in dogs is simply giving your dog a good bath. Use an anti-fungal shampoo or an herbal shampoo with ingredients that feature natural anti-fungal properties. You should definitely wear rubber gloves when bathing your dog, to ensure the yeast does not get on your skin.

Final thoughts

A yeast condition in dogs can be nasty, but a little work on your end should be able to clear things up. Adding Probiotics to your dog’s diet, regular cleaning and grooming, and constant exercise will boost your dog’s overall health. You should always consult with your vet when your furry friend displays symptoms of a yeast infection. Stay tuned for more posts on dog care and much more!   References Kevin, M., et al. 'Environmental mercury and its toxic effects', Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, 2014, 47(2), pp. 74-83. Roger, MM. and Calder, P., 'Obesity, inflammation, toll-like receptor 4 and fatty acids', Nutrients, 2018, 10(4), pp. 432. Scott, Dana. (2021), 'Home Remedy For Yeast Infection In Dogs', Dogs Naturally Magazine, 22 December, Available at https://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/itchy-dog-yeast-infection/  (Accessed 16 January 2022) Mark, (2021), 'Treat Your Dog's Yeast Infection at Home Without Going to the Vet', Pet Helpful, 4 March, Available at https://pethelpful.com/dogs/dog-yeast-infection-symptoms-and-natural-cures (Accessed 16 January 2022) Burkett, Leigh. (2020), 'How to Treat Yeast Infections in Dogs', PetMD, 3 November, Available at https://www.petmd.com/dog/general-health/10-signs-your-dog-has-yeast-infection (Accessed 16 January 2022) Randall, Samantha. (2021), '3 Best Dog Yeast Infection Home Remedies', Top Dog Tips, 9 December, Available at https://topdogtips.com/dog-yeast-infection-home-remedy/ (Accessed 16 January 2022) Garcia, Cynthia., '7 Easy Ways to Manage Yeast Infections in Dogs', Great Pet Care, Available at https://www.greatpetcare.com/dog-health/yeast-infections-in-dogs/vvvvvg (Accessed 16 January 2022) Kruzer, Adrienne. (2021), 'Dog Yeast Infection Home Remedy', The Spruce Pets, 27 December, Available at https://www.thesprucepets.com/dog-yeast-infection-home-remedy-5089075 (Accessed 16 January 2022)  

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