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Dog Food Advisor’s Healthy Foods for Cancer Dogs

Earlier this week in our Tripawds News Blog, we posted about a fantastic website called “The Dog Food Advisor,” a resource by Mike Sagman which provides unbiased nutritional analysis of commercial dog foods.

Mike rates Hill’s Science Diet n/d, a prescription food formula for dogs fighting cancer with a mid-tier rating of three stars. His review summary says:

“Even though this is a prescription product, we continue to limit our judgment to the estimated meat content of the recipe as well as the apparent quality of its ingredients. And nothing else. Our ratings have nothing to do with the accuracy of claims made by the manufacturer as to this product’s ability to effectively treat or cure a specific health condition.

So, to find out whether or not this dog food is appropriate for your particular pet, you must consult your veterinarian.

With that understanding…

Judging by its ingredients alone, Hill’s Prescription Diet N/D Canine appears to be an average canned dog food.

Read Dog Food Advisor’s complete review here.

We asked Mike about the three ingredients that make Hill’s n/d a beneficial food for dogs fighting cancer: taurine, arginine and fish oil. We wondered why pawrents can’t simply include these ingredients as supplements in their dog’s regular diet, instead of purchasing this prescription-only food. Here’s what Dr. Sagman said:

“In theory, there’s probably no reason your readers can’t add taurine and arginine. I say “in theory” because in actuality, these are amino acids (the basic building blocks of all proteins) and they could possibly be dose-specific. I would imagine that some ready-made commercial canine amino acid supplements are probably a lot safer than just guessing at the dose. And fish oil can be an anti-coagulant. In excessive doses it is theoretically possible to affect a dog’s clotting times… and encourage bleeding. And this could be detrimental to a pet with a recent history of surgery.

My best advice to your readers would be to run the supplement idea by a licensed veterinarian.”

Check out the articles Mike cites in his review of taurine, arginine and fish oil. He adds “A word of caution; these three ingredients are basically nutritional supplements thought to support (sometimes only human) patients undergoing chemotherapy. Unfortunately, they must not be promoted as cures for cancer.”

Meanwhile, if you’d like to try Five Star healthy canned foods that Dog Food Advisor rates highly, check these out:

Dog Food Advisor Gives Five Stars: Wysong Dog Food Archetype (dehydrated)

Dog Food Advisor Gives Five Stars: Wysong Dog Food Au Jus Diets (Canned)

Dog Food Advisor Gives Five Stars: Wellness Dog Food Core (Canned)
Wellness CORE Salmon, Whitefish & Herring Canned Dog Food (12.5 oz.; Salmon, Whitefish & Herring)

8 thoughts on “Dog Food Advisor’s Healthy Foods for Cancer Dogs”

  1. I just came across this article while on I was Dr. Sagman’s website (he’s a Dentist & self educated with pet foods.)

    I asked if he had changed his opinion on feeding Hill’s N/d to cancer dogs since he rated it as three stars on his website, but in this article he rates it 4 out of 5 stars. I was told the article was taken out of context and that I should contact the author. So here I am.

    You can read his review and note his comments after each ingredient.

    Anyone who knows what’s really in pet foods and knows how to read a label, knows the first ingredient is very important. Dr. Sagman states if it wasn’t for the meat-by products, which he calls a “shortcoming,” the food might have earned his highest rating, yet when you see his review of 3 stars, he has red flags for other ingredients. I’m confused!!!

    When my guy was diagnosed with cancer I was told to do home cooking or to find a good quality kibble.

    “Meanwhile, if you’d like to try Five Star healthy canned foods that Dr. Sagman recommends, check these out”

    Did the author take this out of context as well as the rating of four stars? If so, can you revise this article to make it factual for the reader. Diet is extremely important when a dog has cancer.

    Thank you!

  2. Sandi, I am deeply sorry that your dog was diagnosed with cancer. Since we have walked along that same path with our dog Jerry, we understand the overwhelming nature of researching the best diets.

    I apologize for the confusion. This post was originally written in February 2010, shortly after Mike’s first review of this product. He subsequently revised his review in August 21010 after a closer look at N/D, but we forgot to update this topic. As an all-volunteer community some things do fall through the cracks, but thanks to people like you pointing things like this out, we are able to keep up and revise as necessary.

    The post has been revised to reflect Dog Food Advisor’s current ranking of N/D.

  3. Hi Jerry,

    Thank you so much for revising the article to reflect the proper rating to help pet parents make an informative decision. I appreciate it.

    My Whippet was diagnosed in Dec. ’06 with a mast cell tumor. The Oncologist wanted to amputate his leg – he was 10 yrs. at that time. That’s a Christmas I never want to go through again.

    I went holistic. He’s going on 15 and still has all 4 legs. In ’08, he was diagnosed with thyroidal carcinoma. They removed 1/2 his thyroid with no complications.

    My heart goes out to all pet parents on this site and know the pain you and your best friend went through. I use to cry reading everyone’s post when I joined the various cancer support groups. A mast cell tumor (the silent killer) seemed like a piece of cake compared to those making the decision to amputate.

    Diet is so important and that’s why I encourage people to do their own research. Use any dog food review website as a spring board. There isn’t one ideal diet – each dog will tolerate it differently. Learn what’s really in pet foods and how to read the label. There are many websites to help you educate yourself.

    I wish everyone’s tripawd a long & happy life!


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