Blog dedicated primarily to randomly selected news items; comments reflecting personal perceptions

Saturday, November 30, 2013

The Prince And The Pauper

Young children who become resentful and angry against their parents because of a punishment meted out in an effort to teach them to become responsible for themselves, often imagine themselves to have been given to the wrong parents. Their real parents, the children fantasize, would never punish them. Their real parents would be wealthy, perhaps of royal or patrician stock, and the child, had it been delivered to the right parents and not switched at birth, would be able to have anything it wanted.

Life can be so cruel, these children think, weeping in anguish over their sad lot in life.

Of course, these are momentary, childish aberrations. We get over these things. We are guided by our parents and become reasonable human beings eventually; at least most of us do. We set aside that kind of fruitless day-dreaming, and realize, as we grow older that we're unfair to our parents to value them so slightly that we would prefer to have been raised by others. And we adjust to life and make the most of it with our genetic endowments and the firm guidance of our parents. And luck.

There have been books written about just such scenarios, however, children separated at birth, by some unaccountable and unfortunate error, from their genetic parents. Taken away by others to become their own, unaware that an exchange had been made. Apart from literature tackling the subject, there have been documented instances when just such occurrences became reality. And one such occurrence was recently revealed to have taken place, in Japan.

When three brothers of a wealthy family, in adulthood and after the deaths of their parents, thought how unlike them their older brother seemed. They discussed the matter and prevailed upon him to agree to take a DNA test. And they discovered that what they had imagined was in actual fact true; their older brother didn't share any of their DNA, so obviously an error had occurred. They went back to the hospital where he had been born in Tokyo in 1953 to check records.

At the time two women had given birth to two little boys. A nurse took the babies away to bathe them, and then she exchanged the clothing that each had been wearing, and returned the babies to their mothers. But the nurse returned the babies to the wrong mothers who evidently did not themselves realize they were given the wrong babies. One of the mothers was reported to have noted later that her baby was wearing the 'wrong' clothing.

And now we know exactly why those plastic bracelets with identifying information are always placed on the ankles of newborns. In fact, anyone entering hospital for any manner of procedure is given one of those bracelets.
Man swapped at birth wins compensation
The families think the mothers believed something was wrong

The men are now 60 years of age. The child born to wealthy parents was given to a couple who lived in poverty and as a result, so did he. He lived with those parents not his genetic parents, along with siblings whom he loved. The father of the family died when the boy was only two years of age, and the family lived thereafter on welfare, barely able to cope. He he became older he studied at night school enabling him to work day shifts in a factory. And eventually he became a full-time truck driver.

He never married. He is emotionally close to his 'brothers', three other men who are not his birth brothers but with whom he lived as a child. And he contributes to their care and their upkeep. The other infant, who was the genetic offspring of the poor parents, grew up in wealth and with opportunity, attending the best schools, and ending up head of a property company. He too had three brothers, who also work for major companies.

His three younger brothers had suspected that because he didn't resemble them or their parents in any way, there might be a possibility he was not really their birth brother. And when tests confirmed that, and when they found evidence at the hospital that led them to a search to discover the whereabouts of their real brother, there was a reunion. All four men have grown fond of one another, the three younger ones telling their newfound older brother they will still have years of pleasure in one another.

"I wondered how this could have happened. I could not believe it. To be honest, I did not want to accept it. I might have had a different life. I want [the hospital] to roll back the clock to the day that I was born. As I saw pictures of my parents, I wanted to see them alive. For months, I could not hold back the tears every time I saw their pictures", said the truck driver. But he has become philosophical about what happened to him. He loved his adoptive mother and his brothers in that family and has few regrets on that account.

He and his three 'new' genetic brothers launched a lawsuit against the San-Ikukai Hospital in Sumida Ward. The Tokyo District Court ordered the hospital to pay the man 38-million yen ($393,000), a considerable sum in damages, in reflection of the accidental transfer of babies. "The links between the man and his real parents were severed and the man was forced to grow up in a poor home. The mental anguish he went through was enormous", said Judge Masatoshi Miyasaka in his ruling. 

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The Christian Science Monitor

‘The Book of Books’ displays 200 of the rarest biblical manuscripts in an illuminating tale of how the world’s most-published book came to be.

By , Staff writer

  • Ardon Bar-Hama/Courtesy of the Bible Lands Museum Jerusalem
    View Caption
Copied by Jewish scribes and Christian monks. Written on everything from tiny silver scrolls to papyrus that turned brittle with time. First published for a mass audience by Gutenberg; now available in 2,800 languages.

These are fragments of the story of how the Bible evolved from the days of ancient Israel to the days of Barnes and Noble.

Now the Bible Lands Museum in Jerusalem has launched a landmark exhibit tracing that story, drawn largely from the collection of American philanthropist Steve Green.
“The Book of Books” exhibit is notable not only for its rare manuscripts but also its unusual balance between the Jewish and Christian narratives, and the reverence with which it treats both. Aiming to enrich both communities’ understanding of how the Bible has shaped Judeo-Christian civilization, it focuses on the development of the texts of the Bible rather than the development of divergent doctrines.

“We are trying to give a sense of how, as I jokingly say, ‘our Bible’ and ‘their Bible’ spread in our society and civilization,” says Lawrence Schiffman, vice provost and professor of Judaic studies at Yeshiva University in New York, who helped shape the exhibit. “We’re able to show everybody, artistically and technically, how those texts spread through our civilization and affected our civilization, and to do that in a way that everybody appreciates and sees the commonalities.”

The exhibit is visually stunning, from a second-century Greek Septuagint on papyrus to a 1450 Gutenberg Bible leaf to an illuminated 17th -century Hebrew scroll depicting the story of Esther. IPad displays zoom in on ancient scrolls and codexes and get forensic views of nearly invisible lettering. As visitors trace the path of those who copied the Bible in myriad languages, the floors change from the sands of the Sinai to the cobblestones of Europe – the last exhibit’s last stop, where visitors can get a freshly printed page off a replica Gutenberg press and see early editions of the King James Version.

Deciphering an erased Aramaic text
Most of The Book of Books exhibit comes from the collection of Mr. Green, president of the arts and crafts chain Hobby Lobby, who has been steadily acquiring an impressive array of manuscripts and artifacts.

Among Green’s most treasured pieces is the Codex Climaci Rescriptus, which features two Syriac treatises written on top of earlier Aramaic and Greek biblical texts. Green says it’s the largest remaining scripture in Palestinian Aramaic, the language closest to Jesus’s household language.
But some of the codex is not visible to the naked eye because the later writer, fishing around for a bit of parchment in the 9th  century (very expensive in those days), partially erased the earlier text before writing on top of it. Oxford University has helped to bring to light the underlying text, and now Cambridge scholars are working to decipher it.

So what motivates a successful businessman to go on a global chase not only for such fragments, but their meaning as well? 

“[The Bible] didn’t show up on a bookshelf one day – there were blood and sweat and tears to give us what we have today,” says Green by phone from his Oklahoma office, crediting those whose meticulous transcription and translation led to modern Bible versions. “If we have a greater appreciation for them, then hopefully people will be more engaged.”

He is planning to open a Bible museum in Washington, D.C., in 2017, which aims to engage the public through three avenues: the stories, history, and impact of the Bible, including on the founding of America.

Part of a broader mission
While much of the material in the Book of Books exhibit will be incorporated into the Washington museum, its current configuration is uniquely designed for a Jerusalem audience.

Though modern Israel encompasses most of the key locations of Jesus’ ministry, many Israelis grow up with little exposure to the history, beliefs, or followers of Christianity, who today make up just 2 percent of the population in Jerusalem.

Museum director Amanda Weiss recalls one Israeli student years ago asking: “If Judaism and Christianity really come from the same source, why is there such animosity and hostility and in many places hatred, fear, bigotry between Christians and Jews?”

That’s the sort of question that the museum strives to both spark and answer, and The Book of Books exhibit has provided an unique avenue for emphasizing that common roots – understood and appreciated – can produce better modern-day relations.

“I think there’s no more fitting opportunity to really understand the Bible and the development of the Bible in text – how it was codified and how it developed in Judaism and Christianity than through the Book of Books exhibition,” says Weiss, pausing near the exit of the museum to read a passage of Scripture on the wall:

Come let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, … that He may instruct us in his ways and that we may walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the law and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
“We can’t say it any better than the Bible can,” she says.

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Food Allergies in Dog, Cats – Causes, Symptoms, Natural Treatments

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Food Allergies in Dog, Cats – Causes, Symptoms, Natural Treatments

In this article…
1.0 What Triggers a Food Allergy in Dogs and Cats
2.0 What Happens In the GI Tract When Food Triggers an Allergic Response
3.0 Symptoms of a Food Allergy
4.0 Common Food Allergens
5.0 Dietary Remedies for Food Allergies
6.0 The Post Elimination Diet
7.0 Topical Intervention - To Treat and Sooth Discomfort
       - Diarrhea
       - Ear Infections
       - Paw and Skin
1.0 What Triggers a Food Allergy in Dogs and Cats
Some dogs and cats have a greater tendency – natural predisposition for increased sensitivity to various foods, but…
The number of dogs and cats acquiring food allergies is rapidly increasing. This trend is reflected in the number one non-life threatening reason why people brought their dogs and cats to the veterinarian during 2012 - ear infections.
One of the most common causes of ear infections and paw and skin irritations is an over-growth of bad bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract (GI Tract) which leads to a yeast bloom. The most common cause of yeast overgrowth is a food allergy. When the root cause of the bloom is not treated the condition becomes chronic. When the root cause of the infection is treated incorrectly (i.e. the solution offered by the veterinarian is multiple courses of antibiotics, is a prescription food, is a steroidal drug such as prednisone further health issues can and very often do ensue.
Food allergies occur due to overreaction of the immune system triggered by repeated ingestion of foods and additives that are potential and in many cases known allergens. In addition, once a dog’s or cat’s immune system becomes hyperactive it may also become reactive to food items that would not normally create a problem – for example chicken or beef. And there are additional factors that can exacerbate sensitivity to that chicken or beef...
  • Consider what the chicken or cow was fed during his/her life span…
  • Antibiotics?
  • GMO corn?
  • Growth hormones?
  • Grains high in aflatoxins?
  • All of these substances enter your dog’s and cat’s system when they ingest the meat from the chicken or cow;
Each of these substances are immune system suppressors, some contain known allergens (see further below). If in addition to the contaminated chicken or beef the food product (i.e. dry dog or cat food) also contains GMO corn and grains high in aflatoxins – you have just inadvertently double dosed your dog or cat with toxic allergen laden food.
Now imagine that your dog or cat eats the same food day in and day out – overtime the chance of developing an adverse reaction (to one of these ingredients) increases.
Many unsuspecting loving dog and cat owners are duped into thinking that the pet industry is geared to deliver the best quality nutrition for dogs and cats – unfortunately this is a false notion. The industry is geared to make huge profits.  Many companies seek to profit with great irresponsibility at the expense of your companion animal’s health and longevity.
2.0 What Happens In the GI Tract When Food Triggers an
      Allergic Response
  • A dog’s and cat’s GI tract is a semi permeable barrier – the partial permeability supports the transfer of nutrients into the blood stream for nourishment of the body;
  • The GI tract digests and breaks down food to enable the release of nutrients for absorption into the blood stream;
  • The GI tract keeps partially digested non-nutritive matter (animate and inanimate) and allergenic matter out of the blood stream, and instead passes the material to the eliminatory system;
    • When partially digested matter slips through the semi—permeable wall of the GI tract into the blood stream the immune system reacts (allergic reaction) – the slippage is a leak, the leak is commonly termed ‘leaky gut syndrome’, the medical term is ‘dysbiosis’;
    • This immune system response will occur each and every time the dog or cat consumes the material that caused the reaction;
    • When the substance is consumed on a regular basis or intermittent basis the allergic reaction becomes a chronic event;
  • When ingestion of the substance is halted the allergic reaction is not triggered and the chronic condition should be mitigated.
3.0 Symptoms of a Food Allergy
  • Fur issues;
    • Bald spots;
  • Eliminatory Issues:
    • Diarrhea;
    • Loose stools;
  • Infections:
    • Ear infections;
      • Chronic ear infections;
  • Skin Issues:
    • on paws;
    • on select locations on the body, or;
    • all over the body;
    • In the form of:
      • Acne;
      • Inflamed skin;
      • Irritated skin;
      • Rashes;
  • Vomiting.
4.0 Common Food Allergens
A few examples of species inappropriate, toxic known allergens common in commercial dry and wet dog and cat food…
Protein Sources (mammalian and plant-based);
  • Beef by product (hooves, etc.)
  • Chicken meal by product (beaks, feathers, etc.)
  • Eggs – while eggs in moderation (i.e. weekly intake equivalent to 3 or 4 eggs) can be very healthful, eggs can be an allergy trigger for some dogs and cats;
  • Egg by product;
  • Fish meal that contains ethoxyquin or is contaminated with aflatoxins;
  • Legumes (i.e. lentils, chickpeas) – animal feed grade may be contaminated with aflatoxins;
  • Milk and milk products – while some milk-based products can provide multiple health benefits (i.e. plain, good quality yogurt, kefir and cheese) to dogs and cats, some dogs and cats are lactose intolerant;
  • GMO soy.
Fats – pour source fats
  • Factory farm sourced fish oil;
  • Rendered fat from D4 animals and/or from animals fed GMO, hormones, antibiotics; rancid fat preserved with chemical-based preservatives;
  • GMO vegetable source oils – canola, cottonseed, safflower, soy – high in pesticide residue.
Fillers - Grains
  • GMO corn, corn derivatives;
  • GMO soy, soy derivatives;
  • Other processed cereal grains;
    • Other whole grains (i.e. barley, pearled barley, rice, brown rice, and derivatives, rye, wheat, wheat gluten and derivatives, etc.);
    • In addition to being species inappropriate GMO is high in pesticide residue which in itself an allergen and health threatening in multiple ways (read the link on corn and soy found just above;
    • Grains (unless guaranteed by the pet food manufacturer as human grade grains) used in dog and cat food also have considerably higher amounts of aflatoxins;
    • Aflatoxins can also be found in cotton seed oil, fish meal, legumes (peanuts and other nuts, lentils chickpeas, etc.).
Other Fillers and Fiber
  • Beets, particularly GMO sugar beets;
  • Powdered cellulose – powdered cellulose is wood pulp, not appropriate food stuff and can be contaminated with chemicals – you can read more on this item here.
(may be present in high volume to act as a filler)
  • Legumes;
  • Potato;
  • Sweet potato;
  • Tapioca - you can read more on this item here.
Chemical-based preservatives such as
Synthetic additives and supplements, such as
  • Artificial Food colouring;
  • Artificial Food flavouring;
  • Menadione (also listed as: Sodium Bisulfate, Meadione Sodium Bisulfite, or (K3) is a synthetic  vitamin K derivative) - you can read more on this item here.
Other additives
  • Brewer’s yeast, Nutritional Yeast – can be beneficial but some dogs and cats are allergic to Brewer’s and nutritional yeast.
  • Molasses;
  • Pasteurized honey (this includes pasteurized honey and all honey that is in a processed, baked or otherwise heated product);
  • Syrup;
  • Sugar (derived from sugar cane, sugar beets, coconut, etc)
  • Artificial sweeteners.
5.0 Dietary Remedies for Food Allergies
For detailed information on DIY Diet Remedies, including a Elimination Diet read here.
6.0 The Post Elimination Diet
For detailed information on Post Elimination diet read here.

7.0 Natural, Herbal Topical Interventions - To Treat and
      Sooth Discomfort

Ear Infections
Paw and Skin
As you can see, there are many natural alternatives that can be used to sooth and treat the outward symptoms of food allergies - i.e. ear and skin infections, irritations. Don't use Prednisone as the dangers far exceed its benefits in the treatment of allergy symptoms, and the many natural safe alternatives are readily available and have few and often no side effects.
Related Articles & Advisory Services
For related and additional articles on dog and cat: behaviour; care; communication and psychology; health; training; nutrition, and animal advocacy go to the index page of my blog site.

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Friday, November 29, 2013

Genetically Modified Food Crops

"The power of pseudoscience to generate fear must not be underestimated. Once instilled, facts rarely dissipate that fear. It's worrisome it took over a year for the journal to do the right thing."
Robert Wager, Vancouver Island University biologist

GM crops: Promise and reality

The introduction of the first transgenic plant 30 years ago heralded the start of a second green revolution, providing food to the starving, profits to farmers and environmental benefits to boot. Many GM crops fulfilled the promise. But their success has been mired in controversy with many questioning their safety, their profitability and their green credentials. A polarized debate has left little room for consensus.

The journal that Dr. Wager was referring to would be the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology. It published an article that made sensational headlines around the world last year, claiming to have discovered evidence proving unequivocally that 'Frankenfoods' are hazardous to the health of living creatures. The article, written as a result of a French study claiming a steady diet of genetically modified corn caused tumours in rats was heartily embraced by all those who dread the very thought of GM foods contaminating anyone's dinner table.

The study authors claimed that rats fed a diet of Monsanto's genetically modified corn, or given water in which the herbicide Roundup was contained at levels permitted in the United States, died an earlier death due to the misadventure of having imbibed those dread bits of food or chemicals, as opposed to rats fed a standard diet.

And while the journal has now retracted the article and its controversial findings a year after its original publication, scientists who scorned the French study consider the damage done to be irreversible. Gilles-Eric Seralini of the University of Caen, feels Dr. Wager, will now be elevated on a martyr's plinth by all those who have no problems believing that genetically modified food crops present a danger to humanity.

Reason, religion and food security  - Jon Entine - June 10, 2013 - Genetic Literary Project

Being Gilles-Eric Seralini: Inside the mind of the anti-GM movement

It’s tempting to characterize this dispute as a battle between science and ideology, but that would be simplistic. Issues of risk, notions of “Nature” and “natural”—these are emotional, even religious beliefs. How we view food is deeply personal. Science can only take us so far—but it’s pretty far.
We all can appreciate why any debate over farming, food and modern technology tends toward contentious. After all, we are talking about our children and our health. The one thing we can agree on is that everyone, on all sides of this discussion, wants abundant, highly nutritious food produced with the least environmental damage.
We decided to focus the forum on global food security. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, 868 million people are undernourished. Food security has improved in recent decades, as the undernourishment rate dropped from 18.6% in 1990-1992 to 12.5%. But over the same period, population grew from 5.4 to 7.0 billion—and it’s on track to grow to 9 million over the next two to three decades. As Bill Gates once said, “The world is getting better, but it’s not getting better fast enough, and it’s not getting better for everyone.”
Global food security is a complex challenge. Agriculturally rich regions like North America, Argentina and Brazil must produce enough to make up for production deficits in Asia, Africa and even Europe. We will need 70-100% more food by 2050 to match population and prosperity growth, and it must occur in the face of more frequent extreme weather events marked by floods, droughts and heat waves.
One thing we know is that technology—including biotechnology—must play a central role, just as it did in the Green Revolution. Beginning in the late 1940s, genetic research led to the breeding of high-yield grains. Combined with the use of new fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides, output soared. Since 1950, world wheat production alone has increased by more than 300%.
That said, the environmental consequences of high-yield industrial scale farming are daunting. Organic farming can play a role, but it’s at best a marginal part of the solution. Although no one believes it’s a silver bullet, the overwhelming consensus of the science and farming communities is that genetic engineering can and will be part of farmers suite of tools for addressing increasing food needs while mitigating environmental damage.
 Rats, claimed the article since retracted, fed the genetically modified diet suffered from tumours. And from severe liver and kidney damage. Transpose that scenario to the health of human beings, trusting the assurances of science and the manufacturers of GM seed and pesticides and you have a gruesome prospect for the future, with people dropping off like flies from the horrible after-effects of having consumed GM foods.

Nor did Professor Seralini stop at merely publishing the words of his dire warnings; grotesque photographs of rats with bulging tumours featured in British tabloids, about the dangers of "Frankenfoods". They had the word of the science as engineered by a long-time critic of genetically engineered food crops. And while many scientists criticized the evidence and study methods, some pointed out that the laboratory rats used in his experience were from the outset known to be susceptible to tumours.

The new editor of Food and Chemical Toxicology forwarded a letter earlier in November of 2013 to Professor Seralini giving him the option of agreeing to withdraw his article voluntarily, or the journal would retract it for him, for themselves, for science. On Thursday they did just that, stating that an "in-depth look at the raw data revealed that no definitive conclusions can be reached" from the small sample of rats studied.

Furthermore, the known high incidence of tumours in the strain of lab rats studied "cannot be excluded as the cause of their higher mortality and incidence observed in the treated groups".  The study, noted Cami Ryan at the University of Saskatchewan, has been discredited by food and feed safety agencies around the world: "Retraction seemed inevitable" she commented.

"It was clear from even a superficial reading that this paper was not fit for publication, and in this instance the peer review process did not work properly", noted David Spiegelhalter at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. "I suppose it is better late than never. Sadly the withdrawal of this paper will not generate the publicity garnered by its initial publication."

Through all of this, Professor Seralini is unmoved and unrepentant. The retraction, he asserts, resulted from the journal's editorial appointment of biologist Richard Goodman. Whose previous work included several years on behalf of biotechnology giant Monsanto. A fair enough observation to be sure. But hardly conclusive of a surrender of professional integrity.
 Reason, religion and food security  - Jon Entine - June 10, 2013 - Genetic Literary Project
What is agricultural genetic engineering?
The Food and Drug Administration recently addressed its role in regulating food safety and the relative riskiness of GE crops. Selective breeding turned inedible wild grains, like corn and wheat into delicious modern varieties. We’ve been doing it for thousands of years, but it is terribly imprecise.
As the FDA notes, “These genes [from traditional selective breeding] may include the gene responsible for the desired characteristic, as well as genes responsible for unwanted characteristics.” Genetic engineering, rather, can “introduce the desired characteristic without also introducing genes responsible for unwanted characteristics.”
Introduced first in the US in the mid-1990s, genetically engineered crops are now grown by more than 17 million farmers in 28 countries. Eighty-one percent of the world’s soybeans, 81% of cottonseed, 35% of corn and 30% of canola are now grown using GE seeds. In 2012, the global area of biotech crops continued to increase for the 17th year. Their commercial value worldwide exceeds $185 billion per year. In the US, the use of herbicide tolerant soybeans, cotton and corn, and pesticide-resistant Bt cotton and corn is even more pronounced.
Almost all GE crops are based on two well-established and rigorously tested technologies. First, Bt crops produce a bacterial protein known as Bacillus thuringiensis. It’s naturally occurring—and it’s widely used by organic farmers to selectively kill pest insects. Genetically engineered Bt crops simply produce their own Bt. The effects are identical to what happens on organic farms—which is what makes protests against genetically engineered Bt crops seem so bizarre to scientists. The net result is that Bt crops increase yields because farmers lose fewer crops to insect pests.
The other major GE crops are those designed to be herbicide-resistant, most commonly glyphosate, better known as Monsanto’s Roundup. Glyphosate does not bioaccumulate and breaks down rapidly in the environment. Because the weed killer is more powerful and less toxic than the chemicals that it competed with, farmers quickly adopted glyphosate—even more so after Monsanto introduced genetically engineered versions that were paired with the herbicide. The use of crops engineered for herbicide resistance reduces inputs, cost, and labor for farmers. It’s agricultural sustainability at work.
In the US, the use of herbicide tolerant soybeans, cotton and corn, and pesticide resistant Bt cotton and corn has soared since their introduction. It’s estimated that 90% of the farmers around the world that grow GE crops—roughly 15 million people—are resource-poor. The total acreage of GE crops in developing countries now exceeds that of the developed world. 
That said, the environmental consequences of high-yield industrial scale farming are daunting. Organic farming can play a role, but it’s at best a marginal part of the solution. Although no one believes it’s a silver bullet, the overwhelming consensus of the science and farming communities is that genetic engineering can and will be part of farmers suite of tools for addressing increasing food needs while mitigating environmental damage.

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Food Allergies in Dogs, Cats – Remedies, Elimination, Diet, Recipe

Saturday, 16 November 2013

Food Allergies in Dogs, Cats – Remedies, Elimination, Diet, Recipe

In this article…
1.0 Dietary Remedies for Food Allergies
1.1 Processed Dry/Wet Prescription Diets – not recommended
2.0 Initial Clean-Up of the Diet

Step #1 – Remove all Grain and Grain Derivatives

Step #2 – Asses Whether You Need to Go to an Elimination Diet

3.0 The Elimination Diet Protocol and Recipe

3.1 Goal

3.2 Duration

3.3 Transition

3.4 The Nutraceutical and Alternative Medicine Element

3.5 The Elimination Diet
3.6 Understanding What Comprises a Novel Food

3.7 Recipe for Elimination Diet

3.8 Supplements for the Elimination Diet

4.0 The Post Elimination Diet
1.0  Dietary Remedies for Food Allergies
Processed Dry/Wet Hypoallergenic Prescription Diets – not recommended...
Don’t use an allopathic veterinarian prescribed processed prescription dry or wet allergenic food unless you have researched that product thoroughly to ensure that the product does not contain ingredients that put your dog’s or cat’s health in further jeopardy.  
 Sounds crazy right? 
Well, many allopathic veterinarian prescribed prescription food products contain substances that trigger allergies and cause further health complications. 
You can find an example of one of the most popular veterinarian prescribed allergenic dry food products here complete with a detailed explanation of why the product is not a healthy option for your dog or cat.
2.0 Initial Clean-Up of the Diet
Step #1 – Remove all Grain and Grain Derivatives from
                the Daily Diet (food and treats)
Grain is the number one trigger for allergies in dogs and cats so the first thing you need to do is eliminate all grain and grain derivatives from the diet (this includes food and treats). If you are not sure what food ingredients are grain derivatives you can read here, here and here.
At this time you can begin supportive supplementation measures provided in 3.4.1, 3.4.2 and 3.4.3 below or you can choose to see if simply removing grain from the diet is sufficient to resolve symptoms.
If after several weeks food allergy symptoms are still present then it is time to go to Step #2.
For those of you that are interested in removing all possible allergens from the diet up front, simply combine Step #1 and Step #2 – don’t wait to do #1 first and then #2 after several weeks time.
If you are already feeding your dog  or cat a diet that is free of grains, grain derivatives and all of the items listed under Step #2 then go directly to Step #3.
Step #2 – Remove These Allergy Triggers from the Daily
                Diet (food and treats)
  • Chemical-based preservatives;
  • Brewer’s and/or nutritional yeast;
  • Egg by products;
  • Meat by products;
  • Poor source fats;
  • Sweeteners;
  • Synthetic additives and supplements;
  • Also…
    • Fruit that is high in sugar content – i.e. banana, pears;
    • Root vegetables that are high in sugar – carrots, sweet potato.
For detailed information on what to look for and avoid see section 4.0 of this article ‘Food Allergies in Dogs and Cats – Causes, Symptoms, Treatments’
At this time you can begin supportive supplementation measures provided in 3.4.1, 3.4.2 and 3.4.3 below (if you did not do so in Step #1) or you can choose to see if simply removing the additional allergy triggers from the diet is sufficient to resolve symptoms.
If after 3 to 4 weeks food allergy symptoms are still present then it is time to go to Step #3, the elimination diet.
3.0 The Elimination Diet - Protocol and
3.1 Goal

3.2 Duration

3.2 Transition

3.4 The Nutraceutical and Alternative Medicine Element

3.5 The Elimination Diet
3.6 Novel Foods

3.7 Recipe

3.8 The Post Elimination Diet
3.1 Goal
The Elimination Diet is a very limited ingredient diet that is meant to be used on a temporary basis to:
  • Give the dog’s, cat’s system an opportunity to:
    • Detox and calm the body/immune system by providing an opportunity to:
      • Stop the build-up of toxins caused by the food allergy;
  • Support the Kidney and liver to eliminate the toxins;
    • Thereby helping to provide relief from the symptoms of the chronic allergic reaction.
  • Begin the process of discovery that will pinpoint the food stuff(s), ingredient(s) that your dog or cat is allergic to.
3.2 Duration
The Elimination Diet should be strictly maintained for 12 weeks (3 months) – no variations allowed and no treats. This should provide ample time for your dog’s or cat’s system to completely detox. To aid in the detoxing process a nutraceutical should be added to the diet – see further below.  
3.3 Transition to the Elimination Diet
Don’t make the switch without doing a methodical transition, unless you are 100% certain that your dog or cat has a constitution that accepts change without adverse reaction (i.e. diarrhea).
Transition slowly by:
  • Substituting a small portion of the meal once a day with some of the Elimination Diet;
  • Over the period of a week to two weeks gradually substitute more of the existing food with the new Elimination diet food until the existing food is completely replaced by the Elimination Diet.
The 12 week countdown starts when the full switch to the Elimination Diet is completed.
3.4 The Nutraceutical and Alternative Medicine Element
3.4.1 Detox with a Nutraceutical
Detox supplementation is required. You can choose one of the following options to help cleanse your dog’s or cat’s system – read the articles to make sure which is suitable for your individual dog or cat, or choose another safe detox agent;
3.4.2 Speed Resolution of Overall Symptoms of Food
  • You can do a course of ingested treatment using Quercetin,
  • Read the article for dosage, cautions and interactions.
3.4.3 Speed Resolution of Yeast Infection and Related
  • You can do a course of ingested treatment using one of the following:
  • Follow the treatment/dosage instructions provided in the articles;
  • Cautions and interactions are also noted.
3.5 The Elimination Diet
The elimination diet consists primarily of two ingredients:
  • A single source, novel protein, and;
  • A single source novel carbohydrate.
3.6 Understanding What Comprises a Novel Food
The term ‘novel’ means a food that you have not fed to your dog or cat before.
For example:
3.6.1 Protein:
If you have had your dog or cat on a chicken-based diet:
  • You should switch to a mammalian based protein i.e. lamb, if you dog or cat has never had lamb, or to a novel mammalian protein – see the list below.
  • Dogs and cats that are allergic to chicken may also be allergic to other fowl, such as turkey, duck, etc.
  • If you have had your dog or cat on a beef-based diet:
    • You can try switching to a novel fowl or a novel mammalian protein;
  • Novel Fowl examples:
    • Duck;
    • Fish (if your dog/cat has never eaten fish before);
    • Emu;
    • Quail;
    • Ostrich;
    • Pheasant
  • Novel mammalian examples:
    • Alligator;
    • Beaver;
    • Bison;
    • Caribou;
    • Elk;
    • Goat;
    • Kangaroo;
    • Moose;
    • Rabbit;
    • Venison (deer).
3.6.2 Carbohydrate:
  • If your dog has always eaten a diet that included grains – novel carbohydrates would be:
    • Potato;
    • Pumpkin;
    • Rutabaga;
    • Turnip;
    • Squash.
  • If your dog or cat has eaten potato before then novel would be;
    • Pumpkin;
    • Rutabaga;
    • Turnip;
    • Squash.
  • If your dog has eaten Pumpkin or squash before then novel would be:
    • Potato;
    • Rutabaga;
    • Turnip.
3.7 Recipe for Elimination Diet
  • If your dog or cat is accustomed to a high protein raw food diet use the same protein v.s. carbohydrate) ratio in the elimination diet;
  • If your dog is on a homemade cooked food or commercial processed dry food diet consisting of high protein content and moderate to low carbohydrate content (for example one of Orijen’s grain-free dry dog food products or a homemade food diet like this one) then use the percentage of protein to carbohydrates as noted below in the recipe;

  • If your dog is currently on a commercial processed dog food that primarily consists of fillers then you have to give your dog or cat more time to adjust to the percentage breakdown of protein v.s carbohydrate provided below. To do this make the recipe with a lower percentage of protein (say 35 to 40%, and a higher percentage of carbs, say 65 to 60% and slowly reverse the percentages to reflect those provided in the recipe below.
3.7.1 Elimination Food Recipe
Daily meals consist of…
  • 50% to 60% novel protein;
  • 40% to 50% novel carbohydrate;
  • If your dog is accustomed to eating raw use:
    • Raw novel protein, and:
    • Steamed, frozen mashed or finely chopped/diced novel carbohydrate;
  • If your dog is accustomed to processed food or homemade cooked food then use:
    • Cooked novel protein (cook using a low heat – not high heat to avoid the formation of carcinogens) and; 
    • Use steamed, mashed novel carbohydrate.
3.7.2 Cautions:
  • If your dog or cat is suffering from other medical conditions you may have to make further adjustments /considerations – for example:
    • For kidney or bladder stones you may have to adjust the type of protein or carbohydrate to suit the treatment required for the type of crystal or stone being dealt with – for more on bladder and kidney stone dietary requirements you can read here.
    • For pancreatitis make sure you go with a low fat meat.
  • Make sure that you check the dietary requirements/constraints for the condition being dealt with.
3.7.3 Supplements for the Elimination Diet
Probiotic Supplement:
  • Should have at least 12 strains of bacteria and 20 to 50 billion microbes per serving;
  • If the supplement does not require refrigeration don’t buy it as the microbes that give the supplement its probiotic properties are dead and therefore non-viable;
  • You can use a human grade probiotic supplement or one sold for dog and cats;
  • Read this article to understand why a probiotic is required;
  • Read this article for additional information on how to choose a good probiotic. 
Digestive Enzyme:
  • Such as bromelain;
  • Ensure that the product contains NO fillers, sweeteners or other unnecessary additives;
  • You can use a human grade or one sold for dog and cats;
  • Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for dosage.
3.8 The Post Elimination Diet
At the end of the 12 week period if your dog’s, cat’s symptoms have receded or even better are completely gone then you can start slowly adding other food stuffs back into his/her diet one at a time leaving days in between adding another item so that you can pinpoint the exact item that is causing the reaction if symptoms start to reoccur.
If you want to continue to feed a processed food diet select it with care – most contain undesirable, health compromising ingredients of one kind or other.  Make sure you know how to select a better product - don't assume you know - must people, even those that think they know - do not! Go to my index page, scroll down the page until you reach 
3.1 – Dog and Cat Food
3.1.1 Dry and Wet Dog and Cat Food (processed commercial food)
- read the articles in that section.
If you want to switch to a nutritious homemade cooked and fresh food diet you can start be using this grain-free homemade food recipe and make sure you follow substitutions to suit your dogs, cat’s allergy triggers.
Supplementation with omega-3 Fatty acids is very important for maintenance of good health.
Turmeric and organic coconut oil have many health benefits including anti-allergenic properties – both are safe for most dogs and cats – read the articles for detail on benefits, dosage, selecting a good product, cautions and interactions.
For additional information on causes and symptoms of food allergies you can read here.

Related Articles & Advisory Services
For related and additional articles on dog and cat: behaviour; care; communication and psychology; health; training; nutrition, and animal advocacy go to the index page of my blog site.

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