We at the Bone House take pet health and nutrition extremely seriously. A couple weeks ago, a story broke across news networks detailing the findings of a year-long FDA investigation into a number of complaints around a link between grain-free kibble and a rare heart condition called DCM. It is important to remember that the takeaway from the report was that while more research needs to be done, at this time there is no scientific evidence linking grain-free kibble to DCM. As the statement from Champion PetFoods, the parent company of Orijen and Acana puts it: “There is still much to be learned about DCM. Of the 77 million dogs in the U.S., 0.5% to 1% have DCM, and of those dogs with DCM, approximately 0.1% are speculated to have DCM related to diet, although that is not scientifically proven. There is no causative scientific data drawing conclusions or providing any evidence that links our foods, or any grain-free foods, to DCM.”*
The full list of pet food brands can be found here: https://www.fda.gov/media/128303/download. The majority of brands named in the report are common brands available in large grocery and mass market stores, and are not “boutique” or pet-specialty specific brands. This list does include Acana and Orijen kibble, brands that we carry in store. Also included were:
• Purina One
• Hill’s Pet Nutrition
• Taste of the Wild
• Earthborn Holistic
• Blue Buffalo
• Nature's Domain
• California Natural
• Natural Balance
• Nature's Variety
• Rachael Ray Nutrish
And several other brands. Please follow the above link for a full list of brands. Understandably in light of this report, we’ve had a number of questions around what does this all mean for your dog’s diet, and what are the options available to reduce any potential health risks. We completely understand the concern caused by seeing your dog’s food linked with a serious health issue. This is a story that’s been circulating the past couple years, and although we’ve addressed some of the concerns around grain vs. grain-free kibble in the past (please feel free to check out the highlights on our Instagram), we want to ensure that our customers know that this is something we have looked into and take seriously.
Champion PetFoods has released in part the following statement detailing the internal research and care they have taken to ensure their kibble is of the highest quality: "Our Biologically Appropriate foods mission is based on the best available research at any one time, including research into DCM. As more facts become known and accepted, Champion adjusts its foods accordingly with the ultimate goal of creating an ideal or optimal nutrient range for dog foods.”*
Please keep in mind that not all kibbles are created equal. We believe in the highest standard of pet nutrition, and so we sell only human-grade pet foods, made with antibiotic and hormone-free meat, so the kibble we carry is the very best quality grain and grain-free kibble. That includes Acana and Orijen, both of which have a higher protein content than all vet-recommended kibbles.
However, kibble cannot compare to a raw or fresh diet because of the high carbohydrates found in all kibbles. Our raw food diets have the highest protein content, are low in fat and sugary starches, and made with very limited ingredients. If you are not prepared to switch from kibble to another feeding option, please come in store to speak to us about your concerns and explore your options within our selection of kibble.
For further information:
*Champion PetFoods, Trust and DCM Concerns, June 27, 2019