Vegan cardiologist Jami Dulaney, MD, recently sat down with veterinarian Dr. Richard Pitcairn and his wife Susan to discuss vegan diets for dogs as part of her Plant-Based Wellness podcast. As health-conscious vegans themselves, the Pitcairns shed some light on the harsh realities of the pet food industry and offered advice for those seeking a higher-quality, cruelty-free alternative to traditional meat-based dog food.
Dr. Pitcairn began his career at a conventional veterinary practice, but after going vegan and reaping the health benefits, he decided to change his methods.
Dr. and Mrs. Pitcairn explain the unfortunate state of the factory farming industry, and the even more deplorable state of the pet food industry. On top of the contamination that “human-grade” meat experiences, pet food meat also includes virtually all factory farm leftovers, as well as roadkill, spoiled grocery store meat, and even euthanized shelter animals. While many consider higher meat content foods to be “high quality,” consumers frequently express disappointment with their pets’ health on these diets.
The recent anti-grain bias, due to concerns about agricultural practices such as pesticide use and GMOs, has spurred trendy, meat-heavy diets such as the BARF diet. Dr. and Mrs. Pitcairn point out that several studies have shown an overall decline in the health of dogs and cats in the last few decades. Diet, as we all know, is a huge factor.
“V-dog is probably the highest quality vegan kibble,” Susan says. (Thanks, Susan!) She explains that corn, soy and wheat are the GMO grains to watch out for, and since v-dog is free of these ingredients, she considers it the healthiest kibble choice on the market.
With subsidies for the meat and dairy industries in place due to lobbying and political biases, our country is blasted with messages to eat more animal products. “Most of us are desensitized,” Susan says. “We are told it’s normal, natural, and necessary to eat meat.” She and Dr. Pitcairn stress the importance of choosing plant-based foods for optimal health and wellness, both for ourselves and our companion animals.
Here at v-dog, we couldn’t agree more! Our mission is to provide products that are better for the health of our dogs and the health of our planet while preventing animal suffering.
"The veterinary practice, Animal Natural Health Center, was founded by Richard Pitcairn, DVM, in 1986 as a clinical and teaching center in Eugene, Oregon for the understanding and use of homeopathic medicine in the treatment of disease. The use of excellent nutrition using home-prepared & organic foods was also emphasized. In 2002 Dr. Pitcairn retired from practice, and eventually moved to Sedona, Arizona where his wife, Susan, could explore her career in art. In Sedona, the Pitcairn Institute, dedicated to teaching and writing, was established."
Lear more about Dr. Pitcairn's homeopathy work here.
Can dogs be vegan? Read more here!
Interested in vegan food for your furry friends? Check out our products here!