We all know the risks associated with cancer for humans. Sadly, the same risks exist for our dogs, and all too often the results can be fatal.
Just like humans, your dog stands a far better chance if the cancer is caught and treated early. As well as this, there’s no denying that lifestyle choices can also play a part in dogs developing cancer.
There are plenty of things you can do to support your dog and implement a healthy lifestyle to help them to live longer and stay healthier in general. Cancer is not always preventable, but you stand a far better chance if you know how to construct a diet that can protect your dog. Plus, these sorts of healthy foods can give your dog more energy and resilience anyway.
In this guide, we explore the foods you can add to your dog’s diet in order to give your four-legged friend a fighting chance.
Which Dog Breeds Are at Risk?
Any breed of dog can get cancer, but there are certain breeds that are more predisposed genetically. These include:
- Golden Retriever
- Great Dane
- German Shepherd/Alsatian
- Bernese Mountain Dog
- Other large breeds…
Small dogs can get cancer too, but you will notice a lot of larger breeds on the list of those most at-risk.
Whichever breed or breeds of dog you own, make sure you give them the support they need. You’re responsible for your furry friend and what they eat.
Everyday Foods That Can Help to Prevent Canine Cancer
It’s really no surprise that meat can be a real help to dogs. Evolutionarily speaking, dogs have been reliant on meat for thousands of years.
The protein found in meat encourages cell renewal to help your dog to heal from illness or wounds. It also gives your dog strength to have an active lifestyle.
Plenty of protein is good from any perspective for a dog. However, if a dog already has cancer their body will be using up even more, so a high-protein diet is essential for those dogs already fighting the disease.
You do have to be a little careful with which vegetables you are giving your dog. Some can be toxic.
Spinach, kale, and chard can all provide a number of benefits, but give them in moderation as some dogs experience upset stomach as a result of overconsuming.
These vegetables all contain isothiocyanate, which lowers the risk of cancer. An additional benefit of this is that they help the body absorbing the vitamins needed, and contain chlorophyll which can block a number of carcinogens.
Always check that the vegetables you are giving your dog are safe. Asparagus and corn are examples of things you shouldn’t give your dog.
This is arguably a leafy vegetable too, but it deserves a mention on its own.
Broccoli has a number of antioxidants and these help to tackle cancerous cells and other diseases. They can kill off cancer before it can spread around the dog’s body.
On top of that, they’re packed with vitamins and have anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties.
It can feel like a difficult thing to incorporate into your dog’s diet, but dog supplements with turmeric can be hugely beneficial and easy to incorporate into the diet.
Turmeric within a dog’s food may also go straight through their system, so a good dog health supplement is the better option.
Turmeric contains curcumin which stops cancer cells from spreading around the body.
It has many other benefits including working against inflammation and even helping to boost your dog’s energy to ensure plenty of exercise is being taken.
Coconut Oil and Olive Oil
A lot has been made of coconut oil in the media in recent years. It can be great for humans but also for animals, plus it is easy to add to a dog’s food.
Coconut oil protects the skin and coat and helps to prevent cancerous growths. Olive oil has a similar impact, containing natural and healthy fats that are great for joints and overall health for your dog. These natural fats help your dog gain nutrients from other food, and they’re easy to source. Plus, there’s very little chance your dog won’t enjoy devouring them!
Parsnips are one root vegetable that your dog can enjoy safely. They are packed with fiber which helps with digestion, and also provide loads of vitamins and minerals including vitamin K for healthy bones and metabolism.
All of this helps to boost immunity within dogs, and means that your pup is armed to tackle cancer and hopefully prevent it from becoming a problem.
It may be seasonal in a lot of areas, but pumpkin is good for your dog all year round, and is one of the most helpful substances when it comes to fighting cancer.
It contains beta-carotene which can slow down cancer growth within the body and boost enzymes that can fight the cancerous substances in your dog’s body.
Beta-carotene can also turn into vitamin A when your puppy digests it, meaning yet more antioxidant properties.
Eggs contain a number of helpful vitamins as well as being a low-calorie and readily-available source of protein. We’ve already discussed how good protein is for your dog.
Eggs contain vitamin D3 which can help to fight cancer. They also contain zinc, which can help to prevent other diseases which could complicate your dog’s cancer.
Can tweaks to your dog’s diet really make a difference? The National Canine Cancer Foundation suggests an anti-inflammatory diet, as well as a diet that supports a healthy weight, as the most vital ways to support your dog and prevent cancer.
Like in humans, diet and lifestyle makes a huge difference to a dog’s cancer risk. Simple supplements to support your pup’s system or introducing more oils and antioxidants into your dog’s food can prevent a lot of pain and heartache down the line.