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Healthy Treat Recipe for Cancer Dogs

Everyone is baking this time of year, right? So… many thanks to Tripawds member ldillon81 from Kirkland, Washington for providing this healthy homemade dog treat recipe!

Low in carbohydrates, and with no sugar, these treats should be nutritious for all dogs and are suitable for supplementing any canine cancer diet. And according to Captain Jack, they are pretty tasty too.

Please note that it is our belief whole grains like wheat should be given only in moderation to dogs living with cancer …

“Corn or wheat is often the first ingredient found in commercial dog food. And even those owners who feed their dogs homemade food will often include carbohydrate-rich potatoes and carrots in their meals. Those foods almost instantly turn into simple sugars, making cancer cells happy and well-fed.

That’s why in general, I say to avoid carbohydrates and sugars. Whole grains can be given, especially if you are concerned about cost and want to give a tasty bulk to an otherwise all-meat-and-vegetable meal. Try very well-cooked, softened brown rice. The bran in the rice contains polysaccharides that have some evidence for cancer-fighting ability. Oatmeal is another good option for a wholesome grain.”

~ Dr. Demian Dressler, the Dog Cancer Survival Guide, pg. 234

For anyone willing to experiment, who is concerned about feeding any amount of whole wheat to their cancer dogs, we might suggest substituting rice flour in this recipe and letting us know how it goes. For additional healthy dog diet tips and recipes, check out Dr. Dressler’s Dog Cancer Survival Guide and this Healthy Pet Diet eBook.

[SEPT 11, 2009 – LDILLON81] …I found a recipe for dog treats and tweaked it a bit (ie: replaced vegetable oil with all-natural applesauce) so I wanted to share it with you… Below the recipe I have a list of the anti-cancer benefits of each ingredient.  Hope you like them!!!  (oh, and all the ingredients cost me about $10.)

Healthy Doggie Treats


  • 1 Tablespoon Applesauce (all natural, no added sugar)
  • 1 Cup Water
  • 2 ½ Cups Whole Wheat Flour
  • ½ Cup Oatmeal
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Mint
  • ⅓ Cup Chopped Parsley
  • ¼ Teaspoon Minced Garlic


  • Preheat oven to 350°
  • Mix applesauce and water
  • Slowly add flour and other ingredients
  • Roll dough on a flat surface
  • Cut with cookie-cutter or into whatever shape you like
  • Bake 25 minutes (add time or subtract time based on the size of the cookie)


Applesauce: The antioxidants in applesauce helps to prevent many forms of cancer that can be caused by the free radicals they fight.

Whole Wheat Flour: The fiber present in the flour helps to keep the gastrointestinal tract functioning normally and may help prevent more serious problems such as colon cancer, diverticulosis, and hemorrhoids. Whole wheat flour may also reduce the risk for diabetes and coronary artery disease. It also contains healthy phytochemicals, including antioxidants, which may help ward off cancer.

Oatmeal: Oats are a good source of both soluble and insoluble fiber.  Insoluble fiber’s cancer-fighting properties are due to the fact that it attacks  certain bile acids, reducing their toxicity.  The phytochemicals in oats may also have cancer-fighting properties.

Mint: In addition to the breath and digestion benefits of mint, it may also help in fighting cancer.  Mint is known to contain a phytonutrient called perillyl alcohol which has been shown in animal studies the prevent the formation of colon, skin, and lung cancer.

Parsley: Parsley contains 3 times as much vitamin C as oranges, twice as much iron as spinach, and is rich in Vitamin A, potassium, and calcium.  Parsley also contains Polyacetylenes which help regulate the body’s production of prostaglandin (a powerful tumor promoter), as well as Monoterpenes which are thought to have cancer-delaying properties.

Garlic: Many studies showed that the organic ingredient of garlic, allyl sulfur, another active ingredient in garlic, are effective in inhibiting or preventing cancer development.  While Garlic does contain a toxin that may be harmful to dogs, it would take up to 50 (FIFTY!!!) cloves of straight garlic to have a harmful effect.  Small amounts of garlic can be used as a flea repellant as well as an immunity booster for dogs with a compromised immune system.

Let us know how your dog likes these treats with a comment below, or follow the discussion on this Dog Treat Recipe topic originally posted in the Eating Healthy discussion forum. And don’t forget to submit your own healthy treat recipes, diet plans, and supplement regimens so we can share them with everyone here in the Tripawds Nutrition blog!

Tazziedog Shares her Canine Cancer Treatment Plan

On August 28, 2008, Tripawds member tazziedog joined us in the discussion forums with this first post including her veterinary amputation surgery and recovery tips after welcoming home Tazzie, her 180 lb. three-legged English Mastiff who had just undergone amputation of the front leg due to osteosarcoma. Pam is a vet and has been very generous with her time and support ever since, frequently answering questions in the Ask A Vet discussion forum.

Tazzie was laid to rest on October 18, 2009. In addition to her chemotherapy treatments, Pam attributes Tazzie’s 14-month survival and quality of life to her metronomic protocol and supplements regimen, outlined below.

Tazzie was also getting 3 Power Mushroom tablets twice daily.  Pam is not sure if the mushrooms or the Artemisinin actually did anything to prolong her life but she says, “Tazzie sure felt great for those 14 months.”

[January 7, 2009] Tazzie had her last dose of chemo (carboplatin #5) on Dec 18th and for the last few weeks I have been doing lots of research to determine if I should do anything else for her.  Traditionally this would be to take the “wait and see” approach; taking xrays every 3 months and just enjoying life. There are currently several alternative paths to take, including the chinese herb artemisinin or trying  a daily low-dose chemotherapy plus NSAID (metronomic protocol).

I have contacted Tazzie’s oncologist (Dr Karri Meleo of Seattle) and she thinks that both are reasonable and should be started as soon as traditional chemo is done.  I also contacted a holistic vet, and several of the doctors researching artemisinin (Dr Cuoto and Dr Singh).  Everyone agrees that artemisinin is safe, and it can kill osteosarcoma cells in a petri dish, but we still don’t know if the herb can work to kill cancer in a dog’s body or if the oral dose can be absorbed properly.  Hopefully the ongoing study at OSU will determine a universal protocol for using this herb.

I originally wasn’t going to try metronomics since Tazzie has chronic liver disease.  I am not worried about the chemo drug (cytoxan/cyclophosphamide) because that is fairly safe at low doses and tends to affect the bladder not the liver. I am more concerned with the NSAID since they all have to cycle through the liver to work.  But Tazzie’s recent blood test is fine and she is still taking her liver meds (SAM-E, milk thistle, Vitamin E) so I am going to try Metacam and Cytoxan daily and see how her liver handles things.  I can always stop if she has issues.  She is also getting stiff on her remaining front leg and I think the Metacam will make her feel better!

If she handles metronomics okay then I will add the artemisinin and I will recheck her xrays every 3 months.  Hopefully as more tripawds try these things we will get some info that can help others in the future.

Tazzie’s Metronomic Canine Cancer Care Protocol

This will be Tazzie’s new protocol (bodyweight 180#)


  • 1 Marin tab(milk thistle and Vitamin E)
  • 500 mg Vitamin C
  • 25 mg cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan pill)


  • 3 Denamarin tabs (SAM-E and milk thistle)  has to be on empty stomach!


  • 3 fish oil caps (1000 mg each)
  • 2 Dasequin (glucosamine supplement)
  • 1 meloxicam 7.5 mg (generic Metacam)

BEFORE BED (3-4 hours after eating)

  • 200 mg artemisinin
  • 80 mg artemether (artemisinin derivative)
  • 1200 mg butyrate (to increase absorption of above 2 drugs)

She will also continue her Innova Large Breed Senior 3 cups dry plus 1/4 can twice daily.  If she stops eating I will probably stop the artemsinin drugs but that is a rare side effect.  If anyone has any questions about these things feel free to ask!

Many thanks to Pam for sharing this information! Follow the discussion on this topic here for additional feedback from her and other Tripawds members.

Please submit your dog’s treatment plan details for publication here in the Tripawds Nutrition blog!

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