As a nutritionist, it should have seemed obvious to me that I could heal my dog by changing his food. But honestly it took me a little while to realize just how radically important it was. I've always bought high quality food for my dog, but even organic, all natural pet food may cause problems if your pet is sensitive for some reason or another. Here's some very interesting facts I learned with my dog Rascal. If your pet has any health issues, consider our story and perhaps you can also heal them by switching their food!
A year ago, my 2 year-old Doberman, Rascal, developed a wart above his eye. It grew very quickly and was nearing his eyelid, so I scheduled him with the vet to have the wart removed. Three months post-op, the wart began to grow again. A repeat surgery was out of the question because his heart didn't do well under anesthesia. I had to think of another treatment. At that time, I was feeding him Whole Foods brand dry dog food with salmon oil drizzled on top. I thought that perhaps switching him to the more expensive grain-free dog food might make a difference. Sure enough, within a few days, the wart started to shrink. Within a few weeks, it was gone.
Fast forward to a few months later, Rascal started to seem stiff when he'd get up out of his armchair or off of his pillow. The stiffness appeared to progress into pain, to the point that he would rarely get up. Once he was up and running around, he seemed ok. But the pain and stiffness seemed to get worse and worse. I really didn't think it could be arthritis in such a young dog, but we tried glucosamine supplements, different fish oils, and probiotics. Nothing really seemed to help. Then I thought, maybe I should buy the very best raw meat dog food. The one I bought was called VitaEssentials, and contained the organ meats as well. Amazingly, within a week or so, we noticed that he was perkier and got up more easily. As the weeks went on, he just got better and better. I couldn't believe it, and at the same time, I thought "Of course!" I see good nutrition make such a huge difference for people on a daily basis. Why wouldn't it be exactly the same for my dog?
Eventually we decided to start to make the raw meat (and our cash!) go farther by combining the dry grain-free food with the raw meat. He did really well with that for a long time. Last week, however, we noticed a fast-growing wart on his nose. So... Rascal is back to all raw food. Now he's getting Steve's which combines raw meat with veggies and coconut oil. I'll post an update when the wart goes away, which I'm guessing it will!
Moral of the story: Good nutrition makes a radical difference with our pets just like it does for us humans. If your pet has any health issues, such as allergies, pain, skin conditions, or digestive trouble, consider paying more at the pet food or grocery store than at the veterinarian's. It's very likely that your pet will improve radically given the right food. Perhaps try grain-free to start, and then progress to all raw if that's not enough. You can buy it or make your own. My guess is that if you're reading this article, you care a lot about what goes into your mouth and will want the best for your pet as well.
Please share your story below if you've also healed your pet with food. I'd love to hear more stories like this!