Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Raw Food Diet, Day 239- Vitamin A-OK

What's up doggie dudes? Mom is back so that means that I'm back online. Boy time with dad was pretty chill - we hung out mostly and snacked on some Cheeze-Its while dad read (not shred) his big juicy law books. He took me on a fast hunt one day which was totally awesome and we got to chase rabbits and squirrels. My slow poke brother had to stay home! Ha! This morning with mom home we all headed out for a fast hunt together, which meant that I had to put up with Big Pupi's short-leggedness. The dude slows me down. Cramps my style, you know?

I've received lots of awesome entries for my Very Tiny Competition and I'm totally stoked about the whole thing. Keep them coming! Some of you folks can get seriously tiny. Good work. You make my tiny look huge!

Time for some post-hunt, post-feast (goat & milk), tired-muscle nappies.

Howl at you later,



Big Punky Pupi talks about your belly:

Hello my fellow feasters! As I'm sure you know, I'm a major momma's boy and I've been super psyched since mom's been back. I think I carried my SingingChristmasTreeMouseToy and pranced around the apartment for hours when she opened that door! Oh happy day.

While she was gone I had to busy myself and so I decided to do a little research. After all... the original purpose of this blog was to provide my munching canine buddies with information about diet and nutrition. So here's a tidbit of info for those that crunch on kibble:

Let's talk about Vitamin K.

It's not something we think about often. Fish oil, Vitamins E and B, calcium, protein... those are all things I've discussed often in this blog when typing away about supplements and our nutritional needs. But this is the first time I've mentioned K here. It's found in abundance in dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale, and it has a variety of forms (K1, K2, ... ). Certain forms of vitamin K can be synthesized in the large intestine, meaning that the bacteria that live inside us can create the vitamin that we then absorb. Ensuring a healthy gut with lots of probiotics makes a big difference here. That means eat your tasty yogurt! K is fat soluble, so it is possible to overdose as the body holds onto the vitamin (versus a water soluble vitamin which is flushed from the body, like vitamin C).

Vitamin K1 is also used as a clotting agent, and is often administered if a pup has gotten himself into some trouble and feasted on rat poison. This causes internal bleeding and the K1 tries to counteract that. (If you eat rat poison go to a vet ASAP for that K1! Don't supplement at home!)

Now onto some info for the kibble feasters -

Read your bag of kibble and check for any menadione derivatives: menadione sodium bisulfate, menadione sodium bisulfite, menadione dimethylprimidinol sulfate, menadione dimethylprimidinol sulfite or menadione dimethylpyrimidinol bisulfite. These are commonly generalized as "a source of vitamin K..." or "vitamin K supplement." Menadione is K3, a synthetic form of vitamin K - or rather, it is a vitamin K "precurser." Translated, that means that K3 is really only the puzzle pieces and our bodies must put it all together in order for it to actually be considered a real vitamin. Confusing, no? Unlike it's counterparts, K3 is water soluble and has never been proven to actually be more stable or contain equal nutritional value to the naturally-occurring vitamin K.

K3 is widely used in livestock supplementation and in processed dog foods. Why? Well, because it's cheap. And there's never really been any research done to check for safety in long-term use. It has been banned by the FDA and by most international administrations due to its known serious side effects in humans, including severe birth defects, internal damage and death. Unfortunately dogs share most of these side effects when dosed with vitamin K3, or menadione. Here's a short list of known canine diseases linked to the supplement:

- Hemolytic Anemia

- Cytotoxicity in liver cells

- Hyperbilirubinemia (linked to Jaundice)

- Weakens the immune system

- Disturbs blood Calcium levels, which are super important for us dogs

...and so on. Fortunately, most of the high-quality pet foods avoid adding synthetic anything to their kibble mixes. Those are the foods that are usually grain-free or at least without corn, soy, and wheat, they contain human-grade meats and no animal byproducts. How do you know if you're feasting on a quality dry food? Well, read this article for a little 101 on how to identify the good stuff. And tell your humans to check out that ingredient label!

If you're concerned about your vitamin K intake or vitamin intake in general, consider supplementing with a whole, natural food. We recommend the Green Blend by B-Naturals, which is simply made up of dried sea greens and irish moss. Those dark green plants will be chock-full of nutrients, and they contain vitamins and minerals in their natural state.

That's all the learning for now, folks!

Big Pupi


The Dog Food Project: Menadione (Vitamin K3)


Amber-Mae said...

Oh my! I forgot about the very tiny competition! I will try & get my entry done soon!!!!

Butt wiggles,
Solid Gold Dancer

Niamh said...

Hi Stanislaw,

Good to see that you are posting now that your mom is back. Bet you had a great time on your fast hunt.

Big Pupi,

Thanks for the info on Vitamin K. I had not thought about that at all but I will make my person read about it. Hope your Therapy Dog class goes well.

Your friend,

Fenway said...

Glad Mama Dog is back and order is restored in the court. Mine's been a little under the weather and she's sleeping in an alternate den so that Father Dog can get his night time nappies. That means I can sneak up and cuddle with her in bed. Hooray....I like her being sick!

We checked my dry kibble that I eat along with raw. We want to make sure I grow out of puppyhood being all that I can be. I eat only human grade kibble without any of that nasty stuff, so all is well in Fenwayland.

I'm still working on getting tiny, but I haven't even been able to master small. We seriously think I'm not going to make the first cut, so I'm going to have to pass on this most clever contest.

Nice to see you back...and the Sox are still in it and the Yanks aren't!!!

Charlie Daniels said...

G'day Stan and Big Pupi

It's great to see you back again.

I play a game with TBU .. I make myself really tiny and he think he should take a picture .. but just as he is about to press the button, I make myself big again!

I think he doesn't like that game! ;-)