Diet for Degenerative Myelopathy Canines

It has been suggested that red meat should not be fed since animal fat is claimed to be the biggest source of free radicals which are said to be responsible for degenerative diseases such as Degenerative Myelopathy. Antioxidants seem to be the only way of fighting these. (See further down page). Diet may help to correct a defective immune system.

If you cannot prepare your own foods, e.g. chicken and vegetables, the following is better than the normal all-in-ones or tinned meats.

Free from red meat, wheat gluten and artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.

The “Missing Link”. (Improves health through improved nutrition. It is made by specially developed methods that stabilize the good fats, enzymes, vitamins and friendly bacteria, ingredients necessary for optimum health). Manufactured in the USA by Designing Health Inc. CA. and is available in the UK.

Savant Distribution Ltd, 7 Wayland Croft, Adel, Leeds LS16 8LA
(UK) 0113 230 1993. 0113 230 1915 fax.


  • Vitamin A – Boosts immunity. Beta Carotene is found in any bright coloured fruit and vegetable
  • Vitamin C – Also known as Ascorbic Acid. It is believed to boost immunity. Can cause diarrhea. take care to reach bowel tolerance level gradually
  • Vitamin E – An active antioxidant. May protect against neurological disorders
  • Selenium – Selenium and vitamin E must both be present to correct a deficiency in either
  • Glucosamine sulphate – Glucosamine is a natural substance found in the joints of bones and plays an important role in the maintenance of joint cartilage
  • Turmeric – A spice that has a potent natural anti-inflammatory effect
  • Bromelain –  An enzyme from pineapple which may help stop circulating immune complexes
  • Cayenne – (Capsicum). The Capsaicin found in cayenne is a natural anti Inflammatory
  • Cordyceps – A fungus which boosts energy
  • Cosequin DS – Glucosamine and sodium Chondroitin sulfate, mainly for arthritis and puts the synovial fluid back in the joints. It is a non-steroid anti inflammatory
  • Flax seed oil – Extremely rich in essential fatty acids, essential for a healthy immune system
  • Evening Primrose – Another oil high in essential fatty acids
  • Yucca – Useful for treatment of pain and inflammation of arthritis and rheumatism, reduces inflammation. American Indians have used this herb for hundreds of years. *Long term use may slow the absorption of fat soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K
  • Lecithin – A source of Inositol and Choline (Both members of the B-complex), Inositol Nourishes brain cells and maximizes the effect of vitamin E. Choline is one of the few substances able to penetrate the so called blood brain barrier, it also aids in the sending of nerve impulses
  • Ginkgo – A natural antioxidant from the ginkgo tree, can increase blood flow to the brain
  • B-12 – Helps maintain a healthy nervous system. Deficiency can cause neurological disorders. Can be found in liver, beef, pork, eggs, milk, cheese and kidneys
  • Garlic – Has anti-inflammatory properties. (Raw)
  • Amino Acids – Are the back bone of protein formation, there are 22 known Amino Acids, they require vitamins for their metabolism, many are essential neuro-transmitters, chemicals which carry signals between nerve cells and the brain


Anti-ox – Contains-Vit B-50mg, Vit E -1000mg, Selenium-100mg, Ginkgo, bovine cartilage, beta carotine-125,000iu, olive oil, CO-enzyme Q-50mg, omega3 fatty acids-500mg, gammsalinolenic acid 500mg. GSD dose 1 teasp daily.

Contact-West labs pharmacy. Email


What are Antioxidants?

Antioxidants, vitamins A, C, E and Selenium are nutrients that are capable of protecting other substances from oxidation. In other words, the free radicals (uncontrolled oxidations that damage cells) that are formed when we inhale or consume pollutants are kept in check by antioxidants.

Vitamin A can be found in fish liver oil, liver, carrots, green and yellow vegetables, eggs, milk & dairy products, and yellow fruits.

Vitamin C can be found in citrus fruits, berries, green and leafy vegetables, tomatoes, cauliflower broccoli and potatoes.

Vitamin E can be found in wheatgerm, soya beans, vegetable oils, broccoli, green and leafy vegetables, whole-grain cereals and eggs.

Selenium can be found in wheatgerm, bran, tuna fish, onions, tomatoes, broccoli, kidneys and wholewheat bread.


The drug Aminocaproic acid is being brought in from the USA and is used for treating CDRM. Ask your vet about this.


The following Vitamins are recommended. (by Dr. Clemmons. Veterinary neurologist.)

B vitamins are water soluble and any excess amount will be eliminated through the urine. They may help in neural regeneration and are something which should be given to dogs. In DM, there is altered absorption of some B vitamins and supplementation can correct this. If your dog is healthy, then give high potency B-complex (containing approximately 50 mg of most of the B components). If your dog has DM, give stress formula B-complex containing 100 mg of most of the components.


Vitamin E is an important nutrient which has been shown to have a number of physiologic and pharmacological effects. It in a potent antioxidant and reduces fat oxidation and increases the production of HDL cholesterol. At higher doses is also reduces cyclooxygenase and lipooxygenases activities, decreasing production of prostaglandin’s and leukotreines. As such, it is a potent anti-inflammatory drug. It will reduce platelet function and prolong the bleeding time slightly in healthy individuals. There is no known side-effects to vitamin E at levels less than 4000-6000 IU per day (except in cats, where levels >100 IU/day can create hepatolipidosis). This drug slows the progression of DM and corrects for low serum and tissue levels. In DM, there does appear to be a deficient absorption and tissue-binding protein which accounts for the low serum and tissue concentrations of vitamin E.

I recommend that vitamin E be given to all German Shepherd dogs.

For GSD under 2 years of age, give 400 IU of vitamin E daily.
For GSD over 2 years of age, give 800 IU of vitamin E daily.

If your dog develops DM, then the dose of vitamin E should be increased to 2000 IU daily.
Vitamin C works with vitamin E and helps regenerate vitamin E, potentiating its antioxidant effect. Vitamin C supplementation does no harm, since the excess is excreted through the kidney. While dogs produce vitamin C in their bodies (unlike human beings and guinea pigs who must have it in their diet), under stress or disease, they may need vitamin C in excess of their manufacturing capacity. In excessive dose, vitamin C can cause flatulence and diarrhoea. This intestinal tolerance level varies among dogs, but is generally around 3000 mg per day in an adult GSD.

I recommend this be given to all GSD. For GSD. under 2 years of age, give 250 mg vitamin C twice a day.

For GSD over 2 years of age, give 500 mg of vitamin C twice a day. If your dog develops DM, then increase the vitamin C to 1000 mg twice a day unless this level causes diarrhoea. (Dr. Clemmons)

Dr. Clemmons. Veterinary neurologist. Complete and full details of the disease and treatments to help (Including full details of Vitamins etc. recommended).


Dr. Belfield. Orthomolecular Specialist. Details of disease prevention, control and treatment & details of his products including Mega C (high dose Vit C=3,000mg per tsp, multi vitamins and minerals) & Vital tabs (contain vit E, yeast & selenium).

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