FDA: Dogs' Heart Disease Could Be Linked To Certain Veggie-Heavy Pet Foods

I did not even know the Food And Drug Administration had a veterinary wing, but good on the government for looking out for our furry friends. Today, the FDA's Center For Veterinary Medicine and the Veterinary Laboratory Investigation And Response Network issued a warning that some dog foods "containing peas, lentils, other legumes, or potatoes as their main ingredients" have been linked with a serious heart condition in dogs.

The condition, known as dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), can cause fatal congestive heart failure. The FDA stops short of saying the food caused the heart condition, calling it a "potential link." No specific pet-food brands are named. Still, the agency urges vets and pet owners to report cases of DCM that occur in breeds not normally susceptible to it; larger dog breeds like great danes, Newfoundlands, Irish wolfhounds, Saint Bernards, and dobermans are typically the ones at risk. Recently though, the FDA has tracked incidents of the disease in breeds including Labrador retrievers, a whippet, a shih tzu, a bulldog, and miniature schnauzers.

Worried about your dog's heart? Check the label on your brand of pet food for its ingredients. Or, you could always start cooking for Fido yourself.