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Dogs are Gluten Intolerant

Irish Setters identified to have gluten intolerance in a research study…

“Affected setters, reared on a normal wheat containing diet, exhibited partial villus atrophy, intraepithelial lymphocyte infiltration, reduced brush border alkaline phosphatase activity, and increased intestinal permeability. Gluten sensitivity was shown by introduction of a gluten free diet, which resulted in resolution of morphological and biochemical abnormalities and decreased intestinal permeability, and subsequent gluten challenge, which resulted in relapse. In contrast, littermates reared exclusively on a cereal free diet showed minimal changes when challenged with gluten, apart from intraepithelial lymphocyte infiltration. These findings document a gluten sensitive enteropathy in Irish setters and indicate that exclusion of dietary cereal from birth may modify subsequent expression of the disease.” In plain English, these dogs fed gluten developed gut damage, leaky gut, and immune dysfunction.


Gut. 1992 February; 33(2): 198–205.

Gluten Free Society’s Stance:

I like probably most dog owners love my dog. She is a 9 pound, squirrel chasing, Yorkie. Her diet is primarily meat and animal organs. Dogs are carnivores (meat eaters). Feeding them kibble bagged food primarily composed of grain is inhumane. Most bagged and canned dog foods contain genetically modified corn, wheat, and soy as major ingredients. How would you like to be placed on a kibble diet only consisting of grain and processed fillers? Wait a second… doesn’t that describe the average American diet (minus the kibble shape – sometimes – of course)? It is no wonder that man’s best friend continues to get sicker and fatter in record numbers much like their human counterparts. Dogs eating grain is just another example of how eating against Mother Nature’s grand design can contribute to disease. For more on how to properly feed “man’s best friend”

go read the BARF diet if you want to start feeding your dog right.

All the best, Dr. Osborne

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