February is Canine Dental Health Month!

Judge rules against prescription dog food companies

Rewards 12.5 Million judgement

Yes, it’s time to think about the regular routine of brushing your dog’s teeth. What better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than with a big sloppy kiss from your number one fan—your canine partner?

I know it is not a favorite thing to do (the teeth brushing, not the kissing) but there are many reasons to attend to your dog’s pearly whites.  (Hopefully, they are still white!) By the age of three, 80 percent of dogs already have periodontal disease. This is one of the most preventable health issues. According to Web MD, “A main cause of chronic kidney failure in dogs is dental disease.”

Did You Know Your Dog’s Teeth Can Affect Her Physical Health?

You many be wondering how dirty teeth can cause diseases in other parts of the body.  That’s because the bacteria in a dog’s mouth forms plaque that sticks to the tooth surface. Minerals in the saliva harden this plaque to form tartar. As the tartar grows under the gum line, it allows bacteria to enter the blood stream and travel to the liver, kidney and heart.  If that wasn’t enough, the bacteria secrete toxins which stress the immune system causing inflammation and local tooth damage due to bone loss.

Your dog may be living with chronic pain but not be showing you how much pain he is really in. Unlike a husband, dogs are quite stoic. If your furry buddy goes off his food and seems uninterested at mealtime, he may be suffering from severe gum disease and or loose teeth.

How Fresh Cooked, Human Grade Dog Food Can Affect Your Dog’s Dental Health

I know what you are thinking. “But I feed my dog dry kibble to keep his mouth clean.”  Sorry, but that is a total myth! Dogs need moisture to keep the pH balance in check. That moisture helps keep bacteria from sticking to the tooth surface. Eating dry kibble would be similar to you eating crackers to keep your mouth clean. Rather, a healthy diet of fresh cooked, human grade dog food, which is rich in nutrients and full of moisture, can go a long way in positively affecting your dog’s dental health.

Going under a general anesthetic for teeth cleaning should never be required on a regular basis.  My dogs are 7 and 11 and have never had to have this procedure. A little attention to brushing every day goes a long way, in addition to a healthy diet. You’ll have fewer vet bills too!

How to Brush Your Dog’s Teeth Properly

Nothing cleans the teeth better than a good old-fashioned tooth brush or at least a finger covered in gauze to remove that bacterial layer. Feeding an appropriate moisture-rich food will help keep things in balance too. Diet contributes to a healthy oral condition.

So, start today. Be gentle and patient but help your dog to get used to having her mouth handled. Make it fun and light. Never be forceful or aggressive. Yes, this is important for her overall health and wellbeing, but your relationship is paramount. Building trust as you work around your dog is rewarding in more ways than one.

Brush teeth every day. Never use human toothpaste. I use an electric spin brush on my two angels, but they have been sensitized to tooth brushing since they were puppies. It is still never too late to start the process. You will be rewarded by a healthy dog, fresh breath and more of those sweet dog kisses.

The use of Presciption dog food is one of my pet peeves and shows that the
phrase “Marketing over Mother Nature’ holds true.
If you are a dog owner, you may have heard about the class action suit
against prescription dog foods. Hills, Science Diet, Royal Canin and Purina
are some of the brands that are accused of misleading consumers and
veterinarians about the benefits and ingredients of their products. The
lawsuit claims that:

  • these companies charge premium prices for prescription dog foods that are not significantly different from regular dog foods. In fact, they are made in the same facilities, using the same suppliers as low-quality grocery store brands like Alpo and Beneful.
  • they do not have any scientific evidence to support their claims of treating or preventing various health conditions in dogs. They are not made in facilities that follow traditional drug manufacturing protocols.
  • that these companies have violated consumer protection laws and engaged in false advertising.

The class action suit was filed in 2019 by a group of dog owners who purchased prescription dog foods from these brands for their pets. They are seeking refunds, damages and an injunction to stop the companies from selling prescription dog foods without proper authorization and
. The suit is currently pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

Prescription dog foods are supposed to be specially formulated to address specific health issues in dogs, such as kidney disease, diabetes, allergies, obesity and more. However, according to the lawsuit, these products are not
regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or any other agency,
 and they do not require a prescription from a veterinarian to be sold.

The lawsuit claims that these companies have exploited this loophole to market their products as prescription dog foods, even though they are not approved or tested by any authority.

This suit also accuses these companies of using low-quality ingredients and fillers in their prescription dog foods, such as corn, wheat, soy, by-products and artificial colors and flavors. These ingredients may not only be ineffective for treating or preventing health conditions in dogs, but they may also cause adverse reactions and allergies in some dogs. The lawsuit cites several examples of dogs that suffered from health problems after
consuming prescription dog foods from these brands, such as vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, skin infections, kidney failure and death.

The lawsuit seeks to hold these companies accountable for their deceptive and unlawful practices, and to provide compensation and relief to the dog owners who have been harmed by them. It also aims to protect the public interest and the welfare of dogs by ensuring that prescription dog foods are properly regulated and labeled, and that consumers and veterinarians are informed about their benefits and risks.

Please be aware that the FDA does not review or verify the health claims on any veterinary diet.

Take a close look at the ingredient list and ask your vet for evidence that the foods in the prescription diet are any better than most regular diets. Also please keep in mind that while your vet has the best intentions, they get little or no nutrition training and often what little training they do get comes from the very companies that are named in these lawsuits. 

Ultra processed foods made with poor quality ingredients are not what your dog needs if they are suffering from an illness. Give your dog a fighting chance with fresh, quality foods for a long and healthy life. 

This lawsuit was settled in July of 2021. Hills Pet Food paid $12.5 million to participants.

Is it any wonder that here at Lucky Dog Cuisine we believe wholeheartedly “Fresh is Better”
The food we send your dog is the exact same food we feed our own beloved pack. 


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