In July, 2019, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a list of 16 pet food brands that may be linked to an increased risk of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). A graph of this information is displayed below. The investigation began in July 2018 when there appeared to be a drastic increase in reports of DCM in dogs, including in breeds without genetic predisposition. Many of the foods identified were labeled as “grain-free” and contained a high proportion of peas, lentils, other legumes and/or potatoes/sweet potatoes.
Although most commonly reported in larger dogs, some smaller dogs and a few cats have also been affected. Due to the complexity of the issue, the FDA has announced it will continue to investigate the link between pet food ingredients and DCM. To read the full report and learn more, visit the FDA website:
True grain allergy or intolerance is rare in the dog and cat. The current recommendation is to transition pets eating grain-free diets to a more conventional alternative. We are happy to provide nutritional advice and diet recommendations for our patients, including those with documented food allergies.
For more information on this important topic and others, please visit:
A link to one of the many articles on Grain Free Diets and DCM in dogs:
and this article on the same topic updated July 2019: