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Diet and Nutrition
 
 
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Cancer-Fighting Foods for your dog

If your vet determines a tumor is malignant, you can support cancer treatment by feeding your dog a specialized diet. The right foods can build your dog's defences, retard cancer growth and increase chances of survival.

In general, a good cancer-fighting diet contains:

  • Proteins: Tumor cells depend on carbohydrates for energy and deplete the body's amino acid reserves. Your dog's diet should be low in carbohydrates, with fat and protein providing energy, as protein prevents muscle deterioration. Feed dogs digestible animal protein including chicken, turkey, lean red meats like beef, lamb and pork, fish, eggs and dairy products such as whole fat yogurt and cottage cheese.

  • Fats: Although the rest of your dog's body is able to metabolize lipids (fats) for energy, cancer cells cannot take advantage of fats. Therefore a diet with a high fat content may slow tumor growth, and make the body resilient to fight tumor cells. The Dog Health Guide states that, "Fats may provide more energy than carbohydrates or proteins."It also metabolizes fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. Include good food sources of fat, including those derived from salmon, mackerel, sardines, fish oil, yogurt and flaxseed oil.

  • Fruits and Vegetables: Feed your dog antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables to further strengthen its immune system. Choose orange, red, yellow, and other brightly colored fruits such as apples, berries and watermelon. Chlorophyll derived from natural sources provides protection from carcinogens in animals. Dark green vegetables such as broccoli, spinach and asparagus spears are good sources of chlorophyll, which should be added to your dog's food. Make sure you puree the fruits and vegetables in a blender, since dogs do not possess the enzymes that break the layer outer cellulose layers in fruits and vegetables.

  • Homemade Food: Consider feeding your dog homemade foods because they are unprocessed and free from preservatives, compared with commercial foods that have a high grain, starch and sugar density that encourages cancer cell growth. Moreover, homemade anti-cancer foods are flavorful, nutritious, easy to prepare and let you provide your dog with some much-needed variety that may stimulate his suppressed appetite.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Do keep in mind that you should ask your veterinarian to customize an anti-cancer diet for your dog based on the cancer type. For example, it is not appropriate to feed dogs with liver and kidney cancer, a high protein diet.

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