Campus News

Professor discusses how canine heart disease was linked to grain-free dog food

Grain-free dog food became popular in the late 2010s as a “more natural” food for man’s best friend. Later, research linked that food to higher rates of canine heart disease.

Joseph Bartges, professor of animal nutrition at the Veterinary Teaching Hospital, spoke with U.S. News & World Report about the trend.

He said that the FDA flagged the grain-free food early on, so he wasn’t surprised that independent studies were finding a correlation between the food and canine heart disease. But there has been a deep divide between animal nutritionists and industry actors. Does correlation mean causation in this case?

Bartges said, “When you only look for what you want to see, you only see what you look for,” when discussing the 16 dog food brains named by the FDA as being associated with canine heart disease.

It is recommended that you speak with your veterinarian to decide the best food options for your dog.