Maple Leaf Veterinary Care Center is committed to the health of our patients, our team and our community. As a community we are dealing with the quickly evolving COVID-19 outbreak. Each of us, as individuals and as organizations have a role to play to minimize the outbreak. As a health-related organization, we have always had protocols in place to keep our office sanitized and clean. This includes wiping with a disinfectant before and after each patient, disposable materials and frequent sanitizing of our front office and treatment area. Keeping our patients and staff healthy is our number one priority. The office continues to run on schedule, with all clinical staff treating patients. In addition to our rigorous sterilization techniques, the best measure we as an healthcare facility can take is to ask our team members and our patients not to come to Maple Leaf Veterinary Care Center if they are having any symptoms or believe they have been exposed to someone who has symptoms. All of us at Maple Leaf Veterinary Care Center thank you in advance for your support and your understanding.
(We’re so excited about it that we are starting in January!)
Dental health is a very important part of your pet’s overall health, and dental problems can cause, or be caused by, other health problems. Your pet’s teeth and gums should be checked at least once a year by your veterinarian to check for early signs of a problem and to keep your pet’s mouth healthy.
During the months of February and March we are offering a $50.00 discount on all dental procedures for your pets.
Grain Free Diets and the increased incidence of Dilative Cardiomyopathy in Dogs:
While Dilative Cardiomyopathy (DCM) is a known problem for certain dog breeds, researchers are finding a correlation between feeding grain free diets and developing DCM in other breeds not predisposed to the condition. DCM is a disease causing the heart to lose its strength and no longer be able to sufficiently pump blood to the rest of the body. The numbers afflicted aren’t huge relative to the dog population in the country but nevertheless we recommend most people move away from any of the foods the FDA has found to be most commonly associated with developing DCM and instead feeding a conventional dog food with grain. This is far simpler and less expensive than trying to obtain a dog’s taurine level (which might be involved in the development of the condition) or supplementing taurine which may help but not with certainty. It may be that something in these grain free foods makes taurine biologically unavailable.
Below is a chart released by the FDA of the dog food brands most frequently fed in DCM cases reported to them:
The only dogs we really recommend go to a grain free diet are those which we are actually trying to see if there is a food allergy and moving the dog to a novel protein such as rabbit or venison along with an unconventional carbohydrate source like peas or potatoes. This wouldn’t apply to most of our dogs. Some pet stores have promoted grain free diets as inherently better than those with grain even though there is no evidence to support this.
We also recommend feeding dog foods from larger companies with recognizable names that are known to have a history of research and feeding success over many years. Examples of these are Iams, Purina, and Pedigree, among others. This recommendation is consistent with advice from Dr. Lisa Freeman, a veterinary nutritionist at Tufts University, who advises owners reconsider feeding boutique brands, exotic ingredients, and grain free ingredients or what she calls BEG diets.
Please feel free to ask us any questions about cardiomyopathy, feeding recommendations, or anything else you’d like to discuss!