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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Fluoride in dog food?

My good friend Eddie at Pets for the Environment, gave me a heads up the other day about a new study he and the Environmental Working Group have just released. Here's the news:

An independent laboratory test of popular dog food brands, commissioned by Environmental Working Group, revealed that the food we buy for our pets contains high levels of fluoride, a contaminant that may put dogs' health at risk.

Eight major national brands marketed for both puppies and adults contained fluoride in amounts between 1.6 and 2.5 times higher than the Environmental Protection Agency's maximum legal dose in drinking water, and higher than amounts associated with bone cancer in young boys in a 2006 study by Harvard scientists (Bassin 2006). All 8 brands contain bone meal and animal byproducts, the likely source of the fluoride contamination.

Scientists have not studied the safety of high doses of fluoride for dogs.

Fluoride levels ranged between 7 and 11.2 milligrams (mg) of fluoride per kilogram (kg) of dog food, with an average of 8.9 mg/kg in the 8 contaminated brands. In contrast, 2 dog food brands, one with vegetarian ingredients and one made by a small manufacturer, did not contain detectable levels of fluoride.

While scientists have not determined how much fluoride is safe for dogs, they have found that people who consume excessive fluoride often develop mottled teeth (dental fluorosis) and weakened bones, leading to more fractures. High fluoride consumption is also associated with reproductive and developmental system damage, neurotoxicity, hormonal disruption, and bone cancer (NRC 2006).

Most of the fluoride contamination in dog food comes from an unsavory mix of bone meal and various meat byproducts added to dog food. The 8 high-fluoride brands list ingredients that include chicken by-product meal, poultry by-product meal, chicken meal, beef and bone meal; these are basically ground bones, cooked with steam, dried, and mashed to make a cheap dog food filler. A smaller amount of fluoride in dog food comes from fluoridated tap water used to prepare the food at pet food plants.

The report goes on to discuss the dangers of flouorides to children and pets, and how you can help your pup avoid those dangers. Click here to read the full report and gain valuable information.

UPDATE 7-7-2009 - Pet Food Industry Magazine responds to study of fluoride in dog foods done by the EWG. Read more.


  1. Thank you so much for this post. It is unfortunate that the dog food industry is putting out this crap. Any by-products in dog food should be banned.

  2. Great looking site, I love it. Maybe you can check out my site sometime. It's a picture blog dedicated to cute dogs around the world! You can visit us at

  3. Good post for all dog lovers...a new way altogether.

  4. Fluoride/Cancer link is Plausible, studies show

    "Fluoride appears to have the potential to initiate or promote cancers, particularly of the bone...," according to the most recent and extensive review of fluoride toxicology by the prestigious National Research Council (NRC). (1)

    Fluoride chemicals are added to about 70% of public water supplies ostensibly to reduce tooth decay, not to purify the water.

    In 2006, the NRC found the.The Environmental Protection Agency's Maximum Contaminant Level Goal (MCLG) for fluoride is too high to be protective of health (4 mg/L) and must be lowered. EPA scientists have been saying this since 1986; but EPA management caved to political pressure and over-ruled its scientists. EPA is long overdue in revising fluoride's MCLG based on the 2006 NRC Fluoride Report, which was done at EPA's request.

    According to Bill Hirzy, PhD, retired EPA scientist, "Since 1986 the [EPA HQ professionals] union has taken exception to EPA’s unscientific approach to dealing with the toxicity of fluoride in order to protect the USPHS [Public Health Service] program of national water fluoridation." (2)

    Hirzy writes, "When I last spoke with the Division Director responsible for that risk assessment he told me EPA was waiting for a paper, promised three years ago by its principal first author, that would counter an epidemiology study done under that very author’s direction at Harvard."

    Hirzy is talking about a published peer-reviewed study by Bassin (2a) which links fluoridation to osteosarcoma (bone cancer). Chester Douglass, Bassin's Harvard University advisor and, at that time, employee of Colgate (sellers of fluoridated dental products) signed off on Bassin's work. But, Douglass told the NRC panel that no such study existed, according to the Environmental Working Group.(3)

    The whole fluoridation program appears to rest upon the shoulders of Chester Douglass whose much anticipated osteosarcoma/fluoridation research has yet to be published even though it was promised years ago, costing tax payers millions of dollars.

    But, there's more evidence linking fluoride to osteosarcoma (See: ) and loads of evidence linking fluoride to adverse health effects - even at low doses added to public (and some bottled) water supplies (See: )

    At least three members of the NRC fluoride panel believe the MCLG for fluoride should be zero.

    Continued with References:

  5. This article is truly alarming. It is therefore worth it to stick to trusted high-end products rather than settle for a lesser one because these lesser ones actually has more frightening consequences than you can believe. I've known of some companies that are actually filling-in preservatives to lengthen the shelf-life of their products but fluoride is one step higher. It is more cancerous and has the biggest destructive effect. I hope people will learn from this.

    Danniele Brown

  6. It's better to be safe than feel sorry for your cute pal. Thanks for the heads up.

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  7. There is a lot more than fluoride to be aware of :o)

    If you haven't already seen it, to get a well rounded perspective of diet in particular and natural care overall, you might be interested in reviewing the book "Ol' Shep's Well-being: A Natural Perspective" :o) [strictly noncommercial]

    The author Euan Fingal has offered up a free ebook (pdf) to try to help us understand how we might improve our well-being and that of our domestic animals in general, but especially that of our canine companions. The book brings together ample unbiased natural sciences evidence, and the experiences of many naturally oriented caregivers, to clear a convincing swath through the propaganda surrounding well-being, and the misguided understandings it fosters.

    To learn more about the book, and to download it, see the journal entry:

    My best to you and yours,
    Lee C

  8. Very informative post about Flouride in dog food. I learned from it.

  9. That's just crazy, but completely expected. I think there should be stricter regulation in the dog food industry - some of the things they put in these products must constitute animal cruelty.

  10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  11. thanks for the article..we certainly need to raise the awareness of food safety in dog food. i shudder at the thought of poisoning my dogs, unknowingly

  12. No thankyou for all the non help. You mention that there are 8 dog foods poisoning my dog but you wont tell me which 8. I could go around and tell people that some of the food they eat is bad for them and I would be right but I wouldnt actually be helping. So thankyou again for getting me scared but not helping at all.

  13. Thanks Anon...we truly wish they would have mentioned the noted dog foods as well in their report, but they didn't.


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