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Discussion Starter #1
A kindof friend up the road inherited a miniture schnauzer a while ago (don't bother asking, it is a kindof weird situation). Anyway, she tells me that the dog has been tested by the vet and she is allergic to all animal protein, something which I had never heard of and I'm still having trouble getting my head around it. So, she (the dog) is eating a prescription vegetarian food. She won't tell me which one exactly, but I'm pretty sure I've nutted it out and when I checked out the ingredients I was really shocked at just how bloody awful it is, and how they can charge that much for such terrible ingredients.
Anyway, this poor dog has chronic ear infections, you can smell it and she isn't hearing like a normal dog, plus her whole body is hot, she just looks miserable and you can tell she feels even worse. I mean, I'm a bit thick, but the carbs are up near 60% and doesn't yeast feed on sugar? Wouldn't that mean that the food is actually feeding the ear infections?
I went out and bought her some canned vegetarian food (Evangers) and some Orijen 5 fish samples and asked her to gradually add some into the pups food and see how she does.
The owner is really reluctant as last time she tried adding chicken, the dog got really sick and it ended up costing something like $600 at the vet, so I can understand that, to a certain extent. I tried my best to persuade her that raw could be a good way to go, but didn't get anywhere, so thats not an option, even thought I personally think it would probably be the answer. I also tried suggesting the one protein diet, you know, where you try a single protein food and if they show symptoms switch to another, but I just keep getting told that she is allergic to all animal protein.
I was wondering if anyone had any experience with this and if there was any advice they could offer that may help me to help that poor little dog.
 

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A few years ago it was proven that dog's due require taurine in a small amount to survive, so a vegetarian diet is, essentially, lethal to a dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you - what you are saying is what I'm afraid of. I find it so hard to understand that a dog could be allergic to meat - to me it's like saying a fish is allergic to water or a horse is allergic to grass. It breaks my heart as I reckon, and you have probably confirmed, that the little dog is essentially starving slowly to death. I should add that its not that she is being cruel at all, she just blindly believes what the vet tells her. Oh well, guess I'll nag her to death to just give the orijen fish formula a go, even if its only to shut me up.
 

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I doubt very seriously if the dog is allergic to all animal protein or even some of it. Like you said, it's like a horse being allergic to grass. I doubt the dog has ever eaten PMR diet. She as always had some kind of junk in all the food she has eaten all her life and it has always been highly processed. Allergy tests are notorious for being inaccurate.
 

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Send your friend here, we'll straighten her out! Some people just can't get past what their veterinarian tells her, but ask her where she buys that food and who she thinks benefits from it. I think most prescription diets are marked up by 40% so you know she isn't paying for "high quality" ingredients with mark-ups like that!
 

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I doubt very seriously if the dog is allergic to all animal protein or even some of it. Like you said, it's like a horse being allergic to grass. I doubt the dog has ever eaten PMR diet. She as always had some kind of junk in all the food she has eaten all her life and it has always been highly processed. Allergy tests are notorious for being inaccurate.
Actually... :tongue:

There are some horses that cannot have some types of hays or grasses due to sensitivities.

I know one pony that, if feed alfalfa, which is a very common type of legume hay fed to horses, his feet will literally fall off.

But all grasses? No way.
 

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With all due respect....there is a vegetarian formula made by Nature's Recipe (available at Petsmart and PetCo) that I have seen with my own eyes can sustain and keep a dog healthy well into it's teens. Let me clarify, that I do NOT recommend feeding dogs as vegetarians, and my dogs eat LOTS of real raw meat.
If the dog cannot handle meat, and this is certainly possible, there are several vegetarian dog foods that are not manufactured by Hill's. Natural Balance also make a veg formula, but the one I know has worked for someone (for years and years) is Nature's Recipe.
 

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it would be hard for me to use anything from nature's recipe. their other formulas look decent until you get to the "animal digest" part.
i assume the veg formula doesnt have it, but still!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for yr replies. I'll start having a look around and see what other foods are out there - almost anything has to be better than what the poor pup is forced to eat at the moment. I do feel an awful lot better because the owner actually introduced some of the fish food into the dogs dinner last night so she's been guilted into trying something. With a bit of luck the dog won't have a reaction to the fish, then I'll see if I can get her to throw in some fresh fish as well. It's a start!
I'll also make sure she knows that those allergy tests are known for being inaccurate. Actually, thanks for telling me, thats something I didn't know. You know, I did wonder because the owner told me the dog catches and eats lizards, so thats a sort of animal protein in a way, isn't it? Maybe I should just run past and chuck a pork chop into the lanai.....
Now, my next mission is to start nagging another poor owner up the road - her dog is 30lbs overweight!
 

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Wow these poor dogs! Yes, lizard meat is definitely an animal protein, maybe there's a lizard-based kibble she can go on? hehe

And I also don't like Nature's Recipe very much since it's extremely carb-heavy and contains menadione sodium bisulfite.
 

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Addiction makes kangaroo kibble, but its a bit low in protein (22%), still I think its better then anything vegetarian. They also have venison formula which is better since its 26% protein.
I also believe that Canine caviar makes a canned beaver food :eek:
 

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In response to the presence of vegetarian diets:

Dogs have a requirement for taurine, though small. Cats do, too, but much larger than that of dogs. Most animals are able to synthesize taurine in their gut to satisfy the requirement. Dogs do this to a certain extent, but not to completely satisfy the entire requirement. However, the amount they require is fractional to what a cat requires.

Taurine is essential to preserve the integrity of cardiac tissue. Taurine requirement goes up with breed, size of the dog, and occupation. Breed is in regards to some breeds being more susceptible to cardiac issues than others; this may be due to a number of factors including energy level of the breed, size of the heart, size of the breed, coat type, and genetics common to the breed.

Size of the dog is simple: larger dog, larger nutrient requirements across the board.

By occupation of the dog, I mean there role to their human. If they are the couch potato, their heart works less and undergoes less stress than the heart of a working border collie or racing greyhound. Less heart stress means less need for repair means less taurine needed.

The taurine requirement of a dog at the minimum requirement level would only require a couple creepy crawlies a week to satisfy, such as worms or ants. Taurine is found in animal tissue, which does not limit it to the standard beef and pork, but to all animals.

I have a feeling that, since this dog lived until its late teens, it was a small dog, further lowering the requirement. Correct?
 
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Worst Science Ever

 

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^^^ What exactly is this chart telling us and what is its source? It is not labeled correctly...except for the title.
 

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^^^ What exactly is this chart telling us and what is its source? It is not labeled correctly...except for the title.
That is exactly how I found it. It came from a site intending to show that vegetarian diets are best for dogs. See how my title was "worst science ever"?

It took me a while to figure out what it meant, too. I think its trying to say that there is a correlation between percentage of lifetime on a vegetarian diet compared to percentage of dogs in the study which are health... except there is no correlation. After the 100% lifetime diet, they all have essentially the same value. Look at the numbers of dogs used to make up the numbers and one can see just how misleading they are.

Dogs fed veg 100% of their lives: 12/12 healthy
90%... 22/26
75%... 53/65
50%... 120/142

Twelve is not an adequate population, especially when compared to the sizes of the other groups.

No source given, no methods noted, no population descriptions, just horribly compiled numbers spouted off as "science."

Ahhh, that makes sense. It was made by PETA.

Vegetarian Canine Diets
 

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California Natural is another product that might work for them. The lamb and Chicken puppy only has two ingredients lamb or chicken and rice. I would think the adult would be pretty close. My German Shepherd puppy goes crazy over this food(lamb). Might want to tell them about this brand. I feel it is something else in the food that is bothering that dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Boy oh boy, I am sure glad you explained that chart - for one terrible moment there I thought that I was going to have to go next door with a big bottle of wine and eat my words.
I'll shoot down to the local pet shop tomorrow (its a ma & pa outfit) and ask them for ostrich food or any other meat (except the beaver, don't think I could do that :smile:) thats not your normal run of the mill dog food. Bet their allergy tests never included the ostrich, or rabbit or venison or roo. I too believe that she is allergic to the crap ingredients she is being fed, not the actual meat itself, or rather, not all meats. Thanks heaps for all your input, I just don't like seeing a dog obviously suffering so much when the fix is probably as simple as getting some decent natural food down her.
 
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