What Is Ethoxyquin?
Ethoxyquin is a synthetic antioxidant (artificially manufactured from other elements) that is approved for different uses.
Ethoxyquin is approved and regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) for use as a preservative in animal feeds.
Dog-food manufacturers have been using ethoxyquin to prevent rancidity and to maintain the nutritional quality of their products for more than 35 years.
Why Is Ethoxyquin a Good Preservative for Dog Food?
Ethoxyquin remains stable at the high temperatures required to process dog foods during extrusion. It is important in protecting fats and oils from degrading, losing available calories, and becoming rancid.
Why Do Some People Question the Use of Ethoxyquin in Dog Food?
Despite the fact that all studies conducted to date prove that ethoxyquin is safe for use in all animal foods when used at approved levels, rumors continue to circulate to the contrary.
Individuals who seek to discredit the use of ethoxyquin will often cite certain studies that showed toxic effects in animals fed ethoxyquin. What these individuals fail to point out is that the animals in these studies were given excessive amounts of ethoxyquin—20 to more than 50 times the maximum limit—before negative effects were exhibited.
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Keeping Your Senior Dog Healthy and Active
It depends on the breed of dog, but your pet's senior years generally begin at age 7. Louise Murray, DVM, director of the ASPCA's Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in New York City and author of Vet Confidential (Ballantine, 2008), tells you what you need to know to keep your older dog spry and happy.
Senior Dog Health: Preventive Health
At this stage, Murray recommends taking your dog to the vet twice a year. "So much can happen to an elderly dog," she says. Your veterinarian can take blood annually to test liver and kidney functions. "Discovering problems early is extremely important," she says. Your vet can be on the lookout for conditions that often affect older dogs, such as anemia and arthritis.
Senior Dog Health: Urination, Bowel Movements, and Appetite
Pay attention to what might be subtle changes in your dog's habits: Is she drinking more water or urinating larger amounts? These behaviors might indicate a liver or kidney problem. Have your dog's bowel movements shifted? This could indicate a digestive issue. Diabetes or digestive problems might cause your dog to eat more but still lose weight. Knowing the dog's patterns can help the veterinarian determine a course of treatment.
Senior Dog Health: Flea, Tick, and Heartworm Medicines
Continue to use preventive medicines.
Senior Dog Health: Dental Health
Clean your dog's teeth daily. If she has tartar buildup, you might need to have her teeth professionally cleaned at your vet's office, which requires sedating your pet.
Senior Dog Health: Exercise
Your dog is probably less active, so steady, moderate exercise is best for her now. Don't turn her into a "weekend warrior" who, after lying around on weekdays, accompanies you on a 10-mile hike on Saturdays. This is especially hard on an older dog's joints.
Senior Dog Health: Diet
Your veterinarian might wish to put your dog on a senior diet, such as IAMS™ ProActive Health™ Senior Plus. These formulations contain nutrients specifically geared toward older-dog health.
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