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Unleash the love: Dog Risk Awarenes Week

DogRisk is a research project about nutritional, environmental and genetic factors behind canine diseases.  The research team at the Department of Equine and Small Animal Medicine in Helsinki led by Dr. Anna Hielm Bjorkman has already obtained ground breaking data, however due to lack of funds they are unable to complete this project and publish their findings in peer reviewed journals. Now it is time for every pet parent, every dog or cat lover to contribute  and make the future of our furry friends brighter.    

I have had a great honour of meeting Dr. Hielm Bjorkman  at the Raw Feeding Veterinary Society Conference last week where she explained the nuts and bolts of this fascinating research and shared their thought provoking results. However, these study results are just a tip of the iceberg until more funding is secured.

So far DogRisk team has obtained very interesting data:

1. Dietary Intervention Study showed profound differences between dry and raw fed dogs.
2. Dogs fed dry diets undergo increased biological stress
3. Dry diets may disrupt the function of organ systems
4. Dry fed dogs showed significantly elevated levels of homocysteine, a marker for systemic inflammation

For  more information on these findings - you can listen Dr. Karen Becker interviewing one of the researchers:
 

While this research when fully completed will provide invaluable guidelines for proper nutrition of our furry companions it may also provide models for human health. According to Robin Moore  who is involved in this research:
Something that hasn't been talked about much is how currently, a lot of human health is studied on a molecular level with rat and mouse models and if you think about a rat and mouse, yes they are mammals, but their life does not really resemble a human life very well.
They're used, even though they don't work very well as models, simply because they're so cheap to study. A dog is genetically closer to a human than a rat or a mouse. Also, if you use a pet dog they actually share the same living environment as humans, and so we might be able to use them as a better model organism for human disease as well.

 

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 and help us  secure better future for our furry companions.

 



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