Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: North Central Wisconsin
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The biggest concern now is an apparent connection between Goldens being fed food that had plant based proteins added and/or the food had a lot of peas and pea products added, Some examples of plant based proteins are garbanzo beans, lentils, soy protein, chickpeas to name a few.
This seems to lead to low taurine levels, which in turn is connected to Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM). Several breeers have experienced DCM and low taurine levels while feeding grain free foods. Lots and lots of discussion on Golden FB discussion groups.
This is the initial post I saw, copied from a public posting on FB
"Posted by Laura Franchi.
Please read - Important Information that should be shared! Recently a number of Golden Retrievers have come up with low taurine levels and Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM). These dogs are not all related but one thing they all had in common --- they were being fed a food that had plant based proteins added, meat was not the main ingredient in the food or the food had a lot of peas and pea products added. Some examples of plant based proteins are garbanzo beans, lentils, soy protein, chickpeas to name a few. These owners were feeding highly rated foods and several brands are involved. Golden Retrievers are one of the breeds of dogs that have been found to suffer taurine deficiency without dietary intake. Taurine is found mainly in muscle meat. Some dog food companies do add taurine to their foods but it is not required. Everyone needs to start reading dog food labels carefully. Dogs are carnivores and do not need a lot of plant based proteins. Be certain the food you are feeding has adequate amounts of meat protein. Do not just look at the protein content of the food. If a food has meat and plant proteins added the protein content is the combination of the two. You may be feeding very little meat protein and lots of legume protein. If you have a concern, get a taurine test on your dog. You may be saving its life. Prior to taurine testing do not change food, supplement with taurine or start feeding meat to your dog's diet. This will skew the results. Some of the dogs tested had low taurine and DCM but showed no signs or symptoms. They were tested because the owners were feeding the same food as others that had found low taurine/DCM in their dogs. If you are feeding raw be certain the diet contains adequate amounts of meats that are high in taurine. DCM caused by taurine deficiency may be reversed if diagnosed early and treated. Please also share this information with your puppy buyers and your vet."
If you are interested, lots of discussion on this on the Golden Retriever Discussion Group, if you are a member, and on the public posting on Rob Paterson's FB page.
Tahnee Golden Retrievers