Fluoride in Dog Food: Bone Meal and Cheap Fillers May Deliver Toxic Dose

Is what you’re feeding your dog delivering toxic doses of flouride and putting your pet at risk?

An independent lab study of 10 dog food brands commissioned by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that eight out of ten of them contained levels of fluoride up to two and a half times higher than the standard set by the EPA for drinking water, highlighting the need for more stringent guidelines for pet foods.

“Our findings point to the need for basic health protections that require companies to prove their products are safe before they are sold. Bringing public health laws in line with the newest scientific research is a critical step in protecting the health of all members of American households, whether they walk on two legs or four.” – Olga Naidenko, Ph.D, lead researcher of the study

The findings of the study, hot on the heels of the melamine in pet food scandal, claim that the levels of fluoride in the dog foods were higher than those associated with bone cancer in boys (Harvard, 2006), but because no limits have been set for dogs, the study raises more questions than it answers.

“Due to a failed regulatory system and suspect practices by some in the pet food industry, countless dogs may be ingesting excessive fluoride that could put them at risk.” – Naidenko

The sources of the flouride were most likely from animal byproducts and bone meal, and EWG stated that the brands found to contain excess fluoride had contents which included chicken by-product meal, poultry by-product meal, chicken meal, beef and bone meal. These ingredients are so-called “filler” used to bulk up the food.

The levels of fluoride found in the dog foods ranged between 7 and 11.2 mg  per kilogram (kg) with an average of 8.9 mg/kg in the 8 brands. Two of the dog food brands did not contain detectable levels of fluoride.

According to the report, a 10-pound puppy that eats a cup of dog food per day would consume 0.25 milligrams of fluoride per kg of body weight per day, which is five times higher than the safe level set by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

EWG recommends purchasing dog food which is free from bone meal and “byproducts” to be on the safe side, and doing some research to find the healthiest, cleanest food for your pet.

KM Photography on Flickr under CC License


Luanne Poindexter

My 110 lb. pit/bull mastiff has a huge cancerous growth on his upper gum. They operated but I don't think they took it all out (just a biopsy) It is moving rapidly to the roof of his mouth. Like nothing I've ever seen. Dark red, bubbly, bloody mess. He's eating with gusto and loving his pp runs. Does anybody know is he suffering? He is a brave boy only cries in his sleep like a puppy.
His left snout is swollen. Does anybody know what comes next? Have you been through this?
I'm upsetting him with all my crying. I rescued him late Jan. and I told him I would give him the rest of his life happy. Not like before. I don't want to lie. When is it time?

Kathleen Montgomery

Great article

Kathleen Montgomery

Great article

Jack Price
Jack Price7 years ago

Very interesting

Beth D.
Beth D.8 years ago

This article made 1 serious mistake. They named chicken meal as a fluoride containing ingredient that you should stay away from. By AAFCO definition chicken meal should not contain bones so there should be no source of fluoride. Your biggest source of fluoride id drinking water. Only distilling removes fluoride. So you must feed your pets distilled water or water free of fluoride to begin with. Brita, Pur, Carbon Filter, or Reverse Osmosis does not remove it.
Second, I see alot of questions about a healthy food. For a complete list of ingredients and there definitions visit. http://www.abundantlifeessentials.com/pet_place.htm. You can also reach a Veterinary Nutritionist who is happy to answer your questions as well as alot of great free info!

Pamela C.
Pamela C8 years ago

We can't depend on the pet food companies to disclose the truth about their own product. Many are owned by large conglomerates who, ironically, use animal testing and torture in their other divisions..

Helen Laray
Helen Laray8 years ago

I buy Blue Buffalo dog food which claims it has no added "fillers." I hope that that means nothing added which could harm my dogs, but unfortunately a lot of claims fall through the cracks and even lawyers have a hard time keeping up with what is truth and what is not.

L C N.
Past Member 8 years ago

What kind of "Reporter" tells you that 8 of 10 dog foods are dangerous and then doesn't tell you which ones??? Really, sometimes this site is a load of s__t!

P H.
P H8 years ago

You can go to the Environmental Work Groups website here and read the article. http://www.ewg.org/pethealth/report/fluoride-in-dog-food/news-release

While they do not list the brands, I do not know why, they advise to

"NOTE: If your dog’s food contains bone meal and other meat by-products, EWG recommends switching to brands free of these ingredients in order to minimize your dog’s exposure to harmful pollutants, including fluoride.

I have not checked my dog's food yet but I would think all dog food makers include meat by products.

I think lobbying for the removal of fluoride from the water supply would be time better spent.

Denise O.
Denise O.8 years ago

Dogs being carnivores means they lack what is necessary to properly digest plant materials. DO NOT feed a vegan diet to a dog or cat. Basically it goes in one end and comes out the other. They do not receive proper nutrition. This is especially important for cats.

My dog has cancer so I have been doing a lot of reading and researching on canine cancers. One hypothesis that vets are looking into is that eating plant materials is being linked to cancer, or at least certain types. Believe me, you do not want to go through what I am going through with a dog with terminal cancer. Do him/her a favor and feed your baby the nutrition they deserve. Besides, if you feed better food, you don't need to feed as much.