Weekly Pet Quiz: Sterilization, Antioxidants and GMOs

1 What are antioxidants?

  • amino acids that are essential for every metabolic process
  • large biomolecules or macromolecules that harm your pet's GI tract
  • proteins that bind specifically to certain sugars and so cause agglutination of particular cell types
  • beneficial molecules that neutralize the toxic free radicals floating around in your pet's body

    Antioxidants are beneficial molecules that neutralize the toxic free radicals floating around in your pet's body before they can harm healthy cells and tissue, thereby reducing oxidative stress and DNA damage. Antioxidants play a key role in longevity, and high levels of circulating antioxidants are commonly seen in the "oldest old" among us. Several studies of older dogs have proved the benefits of an antioxidant-rich diet for the aging canine brain. Learn more.

2 Thirty years ago, researchers at the School of Veterinary Medicine at University of California, Davis discovered the link between taurine and dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), a heart muscle disease in cats. What did they prove?

  • DCM was reversible when cats received the amount of taurine they needed in their diet

    Thirty years ago, researchers at the School of Veterinary Medicine at University of California, Davis discovered the link between taurine deficiency and dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), a heart muscle disease in cats.1 According to Morris Animal Foundation, "The veterinary community was stunned" by this news, in part because the UC-Davis researchers were able to prove that DCM was reversible when cats received the amount of taurine they needed in their diet. Of course, most holistic veterinarians and others knowledgeable about veterinary nutrition and who understand the link between diet and disease weren't surprised. Taurine, which is an amino acid, is found in meat, and cats, as meat-eating obligate carnivores, haven't developed the ability to make their own taurine. Learn more.

  • DCM was reversible when cats received less taurine in their diet
  • DCM was reversible when cats removed taurine completely from their diet
  • Taurine actually had no effect on DCM

3 Megacolon is a condition that occurs more commonly in dogs than cats.

  • TRUE
  • FALSE

    Literally speaking, "megacolon" means large colon, and it occurs when too much waste accumulates in the bowel, causing it to enlarge well beyond its normal diameter. The condition is more common in cats than dogs, and can occur in any age, breed or sex of cat. However, most cases are seen in middle-aged male kitties. Learn more.

4 How can you sterilize your dog without traditional spaying or neutering?

  • there is no other method besides traditional
  • give them birth control for dogs
  • give them foods that reduce their chances of reproducing
  • vasectomy and hysterectomy

    Sterilize without desexing. This means performing a procedure that will prevent pregnancy while sparing the testes or ovaries so they can continue to produce hormones essential for the dog's health and well-being.

    This typically involves a vasectomy for male dogs, and either a tubal ligation or modified spay (a hysterectomy) for females. The modified spay removes the uterus while preserving the hormone-producing ovaries. It also eliminates the possibility of pyometra because the uterus is removed. Learn more.

5 The increasing rates of GI disease, allergies, cancer and other serious conditions in dogs and cats parallel the introduction and ever-increasing presence of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in the U.S. food supply.

  • TRUE

    In my experience, when we're putting toxins into our pets on a daily basis, not only do we negatively influence their GI immunologic health, but we now know that genetically modified foods can actually change the terrain of the GI tract. We're providing a potentially irreversible immunological consequence from feeding tainted diets on a daily basis. Learn more.

  • FALSE

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