Canine Cancer: Nutrition Can be Key

We just love Saturday Night Love's satire. Funny, how they are picking up on the sad state of our food supply. So, before getting the true scoop on nutrition and diet, check out this poignant video on what

Okay, now we are ready to tell you about the diet we have used since November 2005, and we could not be happier or feel any safer. We use it as a preventative in our Golden who does not suffer from cancer, and had used it with our Darcy when she was fighting her cancer.

Read Dr. Gregory Ogilvie's great 24-page paper (PDF), Nutrition and Cancer: Frontiers for Cure! to learn more about the importance that nutrition does play.

Print out this wonderful copy of Dr. Demian Dressler's 76-page paper (PDF): The DOG CANCER Diet: A special report excerpted from The Dog Cancer Survival Guide (learn more about the guide at

Check out Suzi Beber's Help Sheet that promotes the use of whole foods in augmenting traditional cancer therapy.

Organic Canine Cancer Diet

This is the diet we use here at the Land of PureGold. We utilized it with our Golden Darcy when she was diagnosed with fibrosarcoma in 2005 and we have maintained Alfie on it as well, as a preventative measure.

A portion of the sale of this food is provided to the Smiling Blue Skies Cancer Fund, set up through the University of Guelph’s Ontario Veterinary College Pet Trust Fund.



Canine Life — For Purchase in the U.S. & Canada
 West Coast Canine Life — For folks residing on the western coasts of the U.S. and Canada. [Note: Pre-mixes are custom milled in small batches at a certified Organic  and Kosher facility.] Business run by Joanne Fraser who is pictured here with her two official taste-testers, Maya & Abbey.

 Canine Life-Ontario —  For folks residing the eastern coasts of the U.S. and Canada. [Note: Pre-mixes are custom milled in small batches at a certified Organic facility.]  Business run by Liza Cowell.

Canine Life was formulated based on the National Research Council's (NRC) daily nutritional requirements for dogs, and has been developed as a hypoallergenic formula. It has enhanced the quality of life of dogs with: allergies, skin problems, immune disorders, thyroid conditions, kidney, liver and heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Pancreatitis, Megaesophagus, gastrointestinal issues, gluten intolerance, anal gland problems, stress, weight problems, painful joints, aging issues and even those with fussy appetites. The Pre-mix contains these 100% human food grade and organic ingredients: Organic milled brown rice, Organic oat, Organic barley, Marjoram; Turmeric, Carob, Ginger, Oregano, Rosemary, Parsley, Garlic, Acadian Sea Kelp, and, Alfalfa. Each of these ingredients plays an important role in your dog’s health.

MuffinCanine Life can be purchased as a pre-mix or ready made in meaty patties or muffins. Canine Life meaty patties, which are baked fresh and frozen for your convenience, are available in Chicken, Turkey, Beef, White Fish, Lamb, Pork, Low Protein, and in a Puppy formulation. Canine Life muffin are available as: Complete Muffins with Hormone/Antibiotic free meat; Complete Muffins with Regular meat and as Meatless Muffins.


We love the pre-mix formula as this is more economical and allows for greater diversity. A 7kg bag of the pre-mix makes approximately 200 muffins. By adding 1.5 to 2 lbs of raw ground meat, raw minced vegetables, shredded red apple, egg, safflower oil, and cranberry juice to 5 cups of  pre-mix, you will ePattiesnd up with 24 baked meaty patties or muffins, or a 9 x 13 cake pan. Recipes are also available for dogs with specific health issues.

Canine Life makes two formulations, one with the correct amount of calcium for dogs who do NOT eat raw meat with bones as a regular part of their diet, and the other for dogs who ARE eating raw meat with bones on a regular basis. There is a formulation specifically for growing puppies as well. as calcium is an extremely important part of your dog or puppy's diet. In addition, a gluten free pre-mix is available for dog's with gluten intolerance. 

This is our good Golden pal, Gus, who had surgery for mast cell carcinoma in the spring of 2003, and is now recovering from surgery (June 2006) that removed a spindle cell sarcoma mass. His treatments have involved Dr. Wen's Chinese herbal medicine, and now beginning in July 2006 he is additionally receiving the Canine Life Cancer Formulation. As you can see, Gus loves his muffins so much, that he insists on licking Mom's muffin tins clean as well!

The SPECIAL FORMULATION FOR CANCER contains: Organic milled whole brown rice, Organic chick peas, Organic whole oats, calcium, carob, Acadian sea kelp, green tea, turmeric, oregano, marjoram, parsley, rosemary, ginger, and garlic.

This is a true home-cooked diet, each recipe making 24 muffins. The baking time is extremely short as there is nothing to rise here, it is merely to cook together so that any bacteria is removed from the raw ingredients. A few cups of this pre-mix is then added to the following ORGANIC ingredients (that we purchase from a good specialty grocery): broccoli, egg with shell, apple, blueberries, pure cranberry juice, safflower oil, ground chicken with skin, and chicken livers. The ingredients, such as the chicken livers, apple and broccoli, are pureed or chopped fine via a (Cuisinart) food processor. And, the chicken with skin (no bones) is ground up via a meat grinder attachment on our food processor. 

For optimum health, it is also very important to add at least 4000mg daily of wild salmon oil to provide the essential Omega 3 Fatty Acids.

Vital Choice Wild Alaskan Pure Sockeye Salmon Oil   
Our Golden Alfie has gotten 6000 units daily since 2007, before that getting 3000-4000 units a day. Boy, what a difference it has made. His coat is incredible, and at his now senior age of 9 (2008), the extra softgels keep down joint inflammation associated with increasing age and arthritis.
It is a must-have supplement!

Derived exclusively from wild sockeye salmon caught in the cold, pristine waters off Alaska, this 100% PURE oil is not blended with any inferior salmon or other fish oils. Here's why this is unique: To achieve high ratios of EPA to DHA, commercially available salmon oil capsules are fortified with other fish oils. One benefit of Vital Choice Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon Oil is that it has the lowest cholesterol levels, in contrast to the higher levels found in farmed salmon oil. The freshest and purest oils available, Sockeye contains the highest amount of omega-3 fatty acids of any salmon.

It's orange color is due to the high levels of the carotenoid and astaxanthin (occurring naturally in sockeye) that helps the eyes and cardiovascular system. Alaskan sockeye salmon are the richest salmon species in the powerful biological antioxidant astaxanthin, a natural caroteniod that imparts a rich orange glow to the oil and eliminates the need for added tocopherols present in other brands. Astaxanthin is a natural carotenoid that gives our oil its rich orange color—and is up to 100 times more potent than Vitamin E at quenching singlet oxygen ‘free radicals’.

There are NO artificial preservatives, color or sweeteners; corn, dairy, starch, wheat, or yeast.

The following information is also supplied with the pre-mix:

Nutrition and the Animal Cancer Patient

Recipes abound in the world of animal cancer. Simply put, one diet does not fit all, and what works well today, may cause problems tomorrow. From the cancer starving diet, to a raw or cooked diet, and everything in between, the road to good nutrition has many bumps and curves, as owners try to determine the best path to follow, with the guidance and support of your veterinarian and nutrition specialist. The most important thing of all however, is to make sure that your canine cancer patient eats!

Research tells us that animals with cancer have an altered carbohydrate metabolism, so a diet that is low in carbohydrates, and contains high quality proteins and fish oil as the primary fat source, best meets the needs of the animal cancer patient. When preparing food for your pet, try to use organic products, and always use distilled, filtered, or spring water.

Baking with Canine Life Pre-mix or purchasing our cancer diet patties may be just the thing to entice your pet to eat. Consider chicken, beef, turkey, or a novel protein source like ostrich = buffalo or game, along with liver and heart, eggs, carrots, broccoli, celery, cabbage, Bok Choy, turnip greens, spinach, and summer squash, flavour enhanced by antioxidants like fresh garlic and turmeric. Canned salmon, mackerel, or sardines, can also be used. It is always good to have plain old fashioned chicken broth on hand, and dogs often go for a sprinkling of Parmesan Cheese, when other things have failed. Remember, cats are intermittent eaters, so patties should be available throughout the day. Patties for cats with cancer are made with an adapted pre-mix base and different amounts and types of protein.

If your pet is accustomed to a fresh whole foods/raw diet, stick with it, but keep in mind, that if your pet is undergoing chemotherapy or radiation treatments, cooked food is recommended for animals that are immune suppressed in any way. Whatever way you decide to feed your cancer patient, make sure that the diet is evaluated on a regular basis, always keeping your pet’s overall condition in mind, and consider Martin Goldstein, D.V.M.’s book, The Nature of Animal Healing, to guide you through complementary and alternative therapies, to support your cancer patient.

Many herbs have been said to treat cancer, but before you add herbs to your dog or cat’s diet, do your homework, get expert advice and speak with your veterinarian. Dr. Randy Kidd, D.V.M., Ph.D. identifies Bloodroot, Burdock, Cat’s Claw, Goldenseal, and Red Clover, as safe herbs in your battle against cancer, and one of the very best books on herbs is All You Ever Wanted to Know About Herbs for Pets, written by Gregory L. Tilford and Mary L. Wulff-Tilford. Share a cup of green tea with your pet. It boosts the immune system, and also has antioxidant and astringent properties.

Treats are associated with happy times, and for many pet owners, making special treats for their sick animal companion empowers them, and sometimes, it is the only thing that your animal cancer patient will eat.

Sometimes despite everything you have tried to tempt your companion’s appetite, he refuses to eat, and this is where a simple cancer cocktail can come into play. The simplest mixture was developed by Wendy Volhard, and includes 1/2 pound of beef or chicken liver, and 2 cups of filtered water. Simply put the ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil. Stir gently, until you are sure the liver is cooked. This takes approximately five minutes. Remove the pot from the stove and cool, then puree in a food processor or blender, until you have a thick soup mixture. Using a large syringe, feed your cat or dog a little bit of this mixture several times throughout the day, and hopefully, it will get your companion back on the food track.


Email Joanne Fraser (west coast folks) or Email Liza Cowell (east coast folks) to find out which formulation is best for your dog and also to learn about those locations carrying the Pre-Mix, Ready Made Muffins, Ready Made Patties or Custom order Pre-Mix or Patties for dogs with specific health problems. Canine Life products can be shipped anywhere in North America.




Golden Robin's Cancer Starving Diet Plan
This is the diet that has been created by the Cornell oncologist responsible for Robin's nutritional planning. Just check out the mess at Mary's house in her preparation of this wonderful diet.

One of our foundation's grant recipients, Robin was diagnosed with a particularly aggressive form of cancer, Cutaneous Epithelioltropic Lymphoma in October 2010.

You can follow his progress here.


Daily Diet to consist of:
  • 16 ounces (1 pound) Cooked Salmon (Atlantic, wild)
  • 3 cups of vegetables/fruits – cooked, boiled, steamed (Broccoli, carrots, green beans, sweet potato, tomatoes, apples, blueberries, cantaloupe, mango, pomegranate, watermelon)
  • 0.5 cup of ground Almonds
  • 1.5 cups of cooked, long grain brown rice
  • 1 tablespoon of Salmon oil
  • 5 teaspoons of Safflower oil

Daily supplements: (to be mixed in with one or more meals):
  • 1/2 generic vitamin B12 tablet (typically a 250 mg tablet with 250 micrograms of vitamin B12)
  • 2 tablets of Caltrate 600mg calcium supplement
  • 1 generic Choline tablet (typically 500 mg tablet with 250 mg of choline)
  • 1 generic Zinc Gluconate tablet (typically 250 mg tablet with 30 mg elemental zinc)
  • 1 generic vitamin E capsule (typically 400 IU)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Morton Iodized Salt
This diet formulation contains approximately 2091 kilocalories and should be enough to sustain Robin, however, all dogs are different. Please weigh him in one month's time to see if he has lost or gained weight. If noticeable weight gain or loss is observed, please contact us so that we may adjust the diet appropriately.

Given the diagnosis of epitheliotropic lymphoma, we have developed a higher quality protein and specific fat (oils) diet, while limiting carbohydrates (yet still allowing for the value of complex carbohydrates). This is appropriate for Robin since it will maintain his lean muscle mass and increase the palatability of the diet. The above vegetables and fruits have been chosen for their specific antioxidant and vitamin/mineral properties. The amount of Safflower oil that has been added equates to approximately 180 milliliters weekly, which is the dose that has been researched and shown to limit neoplastic cell proliferation (particularly epitheliotropic lymphoma). Please take a week to two weeks to increase to the full dose of 5 teaspoons daily.

Regarding any other additives (herbal in nature) such as green tea, turmeric, etc., the veterinary medical community does not have enough evidence at this time to advocate their use in a therapeutic manner, particularly since most research suggests they may prevent cancer rather than being useful as a treatment for cancer.

Please use the supplements suggested by adding them directly to his food or feed them close to his meals to maximize absorption of the nutrients. Many of the supplements can be crushed and added directly to one or more of his meals each day. The ration above is designed to be mixed together and partitioned out into two meals or more each day. Some choline tablets can be very bitter so it may be best to tray and get him to take it in pill form rather than crushing it and adding it to the food. ... The ingredients can be made in larger batches and then mixed together and frozen or refrigerated into daily portions that can be fed out over a week's time, if so desired.

Mary MacQueen's new part-time job: 15 hours cooking Robin's new diet + 2 hours cleaning up




Famous model Golden Rusty