FDA Potential Investigation And Naming Of 16 Dog Food Brands Causing DCM 

By John Carter

The FDA declared in July of 2018 that it was launching an investigation into the makers of dog food, including those of which are marketed with the label “grain-free,” which are leading to DCM( Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy in dogs. The dogs consumed grains-free diets that comprised a large portion of peas, lentils, other legume seeds, and potatoes in different varieties. The study revealed that the dogs with heart disease were not genetically predisposed to the condition.

In the report of the FDA, 16 food brands were linked with a high chance of heart attack in dogs. The FDA did not require pet proprietors to stop giving their pets the specific type of food. However, vets suggest that those concerned stop the concept of “grain-free” foods. The FDA spokesperson stated:” We’re not saying that you shouldn’t buy these brands; we’re encouraging pet owners to consult closely with the veterinarian who treats their pets since we are still investigating.”

The FDA looked into more than 524 complaints that appeared to be linked to grains-free foods and the risk of heart disease. The FDA advised pet owners not to feed formulas that contain peas, lentils, and potatoes to their pets for a long time.

List Of The Brands

The FDA didn’t disclose details about the companies involved in the investigation, but on July 2, 2019, the FDA came out of the shadows and revealed the brand’s names in the lawsuits.

The list of brands that are included from higher to lower cases entails:

  • Acana
  • Zignature
  • Taste Of The Wild
  • 4Health
  • Earth Bourne
  • Blue Buffalo
  • Nature’s Domain
  • Fromm
  • Merrick
  • California Natural
  • Natural Balance
  • Orijen
  • Nature’s Variety
  • NutriSource
  • Nutro
  • Racheal Ray Nutrish

What Is DCM (Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy)?

The heart condition is a problem that causes heart failure. According to the report, this condition has genetic components that cause it to be present in the genes of a few breeds. This deadly disease usually affects larger species. However, the FDA has stated that they have encountered smaller dogs suffering from this condition. Said this condition: “This is a complex Many aspects need the use of a scientific method to evaluate.”

How DCM Affects The Heart Of A Dog

Heart disease can affect dogs severely due to thinning the left ventricle in the middle of your heart. Ventricles are the final point where blood can rest before it is circulated into the circulatory system by the heart. The thinned ventricle weakens a dog’s heart enough that the blood can flow into the lung. If fluids stuff the lungs, they trigger coughing or illness. There is no cure for the dog if it is at the point of no return; however, if you’re lucky, then you could help your dog by giving him the proper treatment.

Is Grain-Free Diet A Cause Of DCM

The researchers are still debating on whether heart disease is caused by genetics or, as a result, of a diet high in grains. The study shows that over 90% of dogs’ diet was grain-free in nearly every case. It comprises 93% peas, legumes, and potatoes that the FDA requested people stop eating. Several vets have asked people to quit using grain-free diets and add cereal grains into their pets’ diets. The pets with an increased DCM rate were fed grain-free diets, which are believed to be a major factor in CDM and some genetic characteristics.

The genetic predisposition is not the primary reason behind the increase in heart disease because, like cats, canines are also being diagnosed with the condition. According to the American, Veterinary Medical Association reported in 2019, over 77 million pets live in the USA; however, many aren’t diagnosed with heart conditions. The president of the Veterinary Association said, “the number of dogs affected with heart disease may not seem like a lot.”

A Diet Rich In Whole Grains Is Not Healthy For Dogs: A Myth

The majority of reports mention dried dog formulas and semi-moist food, raw foods, and wet food items are all included. Many vets consider the practice of feeding grain-free dog food the primary cause. Dr. de Jong said, “The whole grain-free thing is a popular myth.” This means it’s not difficult for dogs to digest food, including grains like corn, wheat, soy, and others. Although corn isn’t a great source of nutrition since it doesn’t contain certain nutrients, it doesn’t mean it’s difficult to control. To prove his point, de Jong said. De Jong said, “if they look at the dog’s relatives in the wild, like coyotes, wolves, and hyenas, they live on their prey. Those animals prey on are typically herbivores, so they are ingesting grains anyway.”

Breeds Most Affected By Cardiomyopathy

As per the research, many large dogs from different breeds were diagnosed with this condition in the beginning. Heart failure is a frequent problem in large breeds, such as German Shepherd and Danes. However, this condition, i.e., DCM, was reported frequently by Golden Retrievers to the FDA. The majority of cases were in mixed breeds and Labrador retrievers, too. Recently, however, the condition was discovered in smaller species with no genetic link to these breeds.


According to the report released by the FDA, The FDA has stated that your pet could be diagnosed with certain heart conditions because of his diet. What’s included in your pet’s diet could be harmful to his health. The FDA has been asking individuals to stop feeding grain-free diets for their pets for more than three years because they are made up of peas, beans, and potatoes that are not healthy for dogs. The investigation continues through the FDA, but the government hasn’t yet found that the dog’s food is the reason behind heart disease or the breed’s genes.

The experts have suggested that people change to a grains diet. However, there’s no reason to make a change immediately if your pet is enjoying what they are eating. The report didn’t include the names of the brands initially but then announced the characters to people who are aware of an improved cause. The hope is that FDA determines the source of the problem and prevents pets from falling into the fate of this fatal disease.

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John Carter

About the Author

love dogs. And if you love your dog as much as I love mine, you’re probably concerned about how to find a safe and healthy food to nourish her. What’s more, you’d probably like to know a little about me and how my website can help you. I’m a graduate of the Medical College of Virginia with a doctorate in dental surgery. My undergraduate studies include a major in chemistry and a minor in biology. In addition to my professional studies in human nutrition, I’ve also cultivated a personal passion for canine nutrition, too.

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