Is Your Dog's Food Toxic?

What's in this food, this dog wonders. (Photo: Ekaterina Markelova/Shutterstock)

It was just two years ago when the melamine pet food scare sent many owners scrambling to find safer alternatives for their furry friends. Now, a new threat has emerged: potentially toxic doses of fluoride in dog food.

According to the Environmental Working Group, alarming levels of fluoride can be found in eight of 10 dog foods they tested. The concentration of fluoride was up to 2.5 times higher than the safe level set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for drinking water. (Click here to read the full report.)

Oddly, there is no fluoride standard for pet food. But the Environmental Working Group estimates that between drinking fluoridated water from the tap and eating their normal dog food, some dogs may be exposed to as much as five times the safe limit for fluoride. Unfortunately, without research on safe levels, there is no way to know if all of this fluoride is good or bad for dogs. Dr. Olga Naidenko, lead researcher of the EWG-sponsored study, had this to say:

“Our findings point to the need for basic health protections that require companies to prove their products are safe before they are sold. Bringing public health laws in line with the newest scientific research is a critical step in protecting the health of all members of American households, whether they walk on two legs or four.”
According to the Environmental Working Group, the fluoride in dog food originates in bone meal and animal byproducts, so the group recommends choosing brands free of bone meal and meat byproduct ingredients like chicken byproduct meal, poultry byproduct meal, chicken meal a