Animal Doctor Articles Weekly on April 17, 2012


My 7-year-old female boxer has kidney stones. The mass in her bladder was the size of a walnut and was removed surgically. The stones were sent to a lab and were identified as struvite stones.

She has been on Hill's Prescription Diet W/D. The first three ingredients are whole grain corn, powdered cellulose and corn gluten meal. Besides being very expensive, she hates the food and refuses to eat it. I boiled some chicken bones and skin and am putting the broth over her food. I am willing to cook for her. Would you have any suggestions? I have spent considerable time online, including your website, and have not come up with any satisfactory solutions.

Apr 17, 2012


It is regrettable that so many of the prescription diets for dogs and cats are not only expensive, but too often unpalatable. There are also other concerns detailed in my book "Not Fit for a Dog: The Truth About Manufactured Cat and Dog Food," which I co-authored with two other veterinarians.

A combination of cystitis or bladder infection and too much cereal in the dog food (which makes the urine too alkaline) can be the trigger for struvite crystals and larger stones to form. This is more serious for neutered male cats and small dogs, where the urinary tract is of small diameter, resulting in the painful emergency of urinary blockage.

Check my website for my list of preferred dog foods (including organic) and my home-prepared recipe -- minus the rice for your dog. High meat and vegetable content should help maintain a healthy acidity.

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