Posts Tagged ‘Dr. Jane Bicks’

Rawhide chews vs Porkhide for Dogs

First, rawhide is largely indigestible. That’s right: indigestible. I have known a friend’s dog die right in front of her because of this deadly treat. I think they should be banned from the shelf.  The only thing that is good about it is that the whole animal is being used and not wasted for giving up their life.

Dogs have died or had serious complications requiring surgery from blockages
caused by rawhide pieces. Our Porkhide products, by comparison, are about
95% digestible, meaning that there’s very little waste. Also, our Porkhides
are made of layers of pork skin, and those layers come apart as the dog
chews. So there are never the big solid pieces that there are with rawhide.
Our Porkhides contain zero chemicals-no dyes, no preservatives, no bleaches.
Nothing but pork skin. Look at our Porkhide packages, you’ll see
that they are 93% protein. Rawhide mostly ends up as undigested pieces in
the back yard, and it has little or no nutrition at all.

Much rawhide is treated with dangerous chemicals-ash-lye solutions,
bleaches, etc. In theory, rawhide that says it’s made in the USA shouldn’t
be laced with chemicals, but there’s no way to know for sure. Many rawhide
products are actually from China. Don’t gamble with your pet’s digestive system.

Rawhide is made from beef.  As Dr Jane tells us (and as I saw on the news
just a week or two ago), there are cases of Mad Cow Disease in the US,
although they seem to be mostly concealed from us. At least we don’t often
hear about them. For that reason, Dr Jane doesn’t use any beef in any
products she formulates.

Finally, here’s what our Life’s Abundance websites say about Rawhide vs
Porkhide: “Rawhides are cured with harsh chemicals (like ash-lye solutions
and bleach) and are known to cause choking, throat irritations and
intestinal blockages.”

We have the porkhides and porky puffs. My dog LOVES them. Our food is fresh and has NEVER been on Recall!

Try our healthy treats for dental, breath and lowfat!

DOG Grooming Tips-Easy to do!

Canine Grooming Tips by Dr. Jane from Life’s Abundance

Family Washing DogNo one likes a bad hair day … and that includes your dog. Just like with humans, the skin is the largest organ of a dog’s body. Every day, their skin and coats are exposed to UV rays, pollution, infectious agents, drying heat or wind. Because it can contribute to a dog’s overall health, grooming should be an essential part of companion animal care. While bathing a dog, I think all of us have experienced getting wetter than your dog, being interrupted by phone calls, or, worst of all, a sudsy canine tearing off, leaving a wet, sudsy trail behind him. As a veterinarian with a good deal of grooming experience, I can tell you that planning ahead can reduce unwanted problems and stress, so here are a handful of my best tips.


Unfortunately, bathing can be stressful for some dogs, as some just tolerate it better than others. For those pups who are particularly skiddish, consider brewing some chamomile tea to calm your dog. Thirty minutes before you bathe, give your dog a cooled cup of chamomile tea with honey, (and yourself) followed by a dog treat that’s rich in carbohydrates, like our Antioxidant Health Bars. The carbohydrates will help deliver the calming tea straight to your dog’s brain. Better yet, you can both sit down with some tea and play soothing music, to set a calming tone for your upcoming grooming session. You can also give your dog tea during the grooming session. As we’ve already mentioned, just make sure the tea has cooled off (no hotter than room temperature).

I recommend the use of a grooming apron with pockets that covers you from chest to mid-thighs, to protect your clothes. While you can always put your clothes in the laundry later, dog hair can be difficult to remove from a washing machine. A full apron not only protects your clothes, in the pockets you can keep treats, shampoo, conditioner and a brush. The treats you choose must smell appealing to your dog – like our Tasty Rewards Training Treats – and keeping them in your apron pockets will leave your hands free for grooming.

If your dog is of a long-haired breed, (Barbara has a cockapoo)  brush with a fine-tooth comb prior to bathing, so you don’t have to contend with knots while shampooing, potentially making a bad problem worse.


Whether you bathe your dog in the tub or the backyard, sit on a low stool to prevent stress or injury to your back and knees. If you’re outside, I advise that you use a six-foot leash. Tie it around your waist or hook it on your belt to free up your hands and prevent your dog from slipping away for a sudsy romp.

If you’re using water from an outdoor hose, keep in mind that, while it might be warm outside, the water will feel cold to your dog, not always without substantial discomfort. If at all possible, use tepid water, either by running extension hoses from the sink in your house, or simply bathe your dog indoors in a tub.

When you apply the shampoo, make small circles with a hairbrush with plastic nubs to distribute the shampoo evenly through the hair and onto the skin. This will also exfoliate the skin and allow the herbs in the shampoo to penetrate the skin. Leave the shampoo on for about three minutes, but don’t allow it to dry as this can irritate the skin. Our Revitalizing Shampoo suds well, rinses easily, and features rosemary to help increase blood flow, ultimately contributing to healthier skin and hair.

Most animals really don’t enjoy having their heads washed, so I suggest that you simply wet the head using a wash cloth. That way, you’ll be sure to prevent shampoo from entering the eyes or ears, making the entire experience more enjoyable for your canine companion.


I recommend towel drying your dog versus using a blowdryer, which can excessively dry or even burn skin, and frighten some dogs with the sound. The best method for towel drying is by patting rather than using a circular motion, which can often lead to matting. BE careful!

In most cases, you’ll be able to see an immediate change in your dog’s appearance following a bath. You’ll know that you’re using a high quality shampoo when your dog has a shinier, fuller coat, less dander and no more “doggie smell”. With moisture-activated odor neutralizers, our Revitalizing Shampoo features antioxidants and organic extracts of rosemary and sage, nutritive herbs that penetrate into the hair shaft and promote coat health. Also included are kiwi and mango essences, selected because they too enhance the health of the skin, as well as leaving your dog’s coat smelling clean and fresh.

You should not bathe your dog more often than every two-to-three weeks. If your dog’s coat could do with some freshening in between baths, use Bath Fresh Mist to neutralize odors and condition the skin and coat. This product is so simple to use … just spray and brush into in the coat. You will love the aroma and your dog will love the attention!

And what about you? Do you have any “must-know” grooming tips that you’d like to share with your fellow blog readers? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Thank you for all you do to make the world a better place for companion animals!

Dr Jane Bicks Dr. Jane Bicks

Tips for your Dog and Cats Dental Care-READ THIS!

Three Toothsome Tips for Canine Dental Health

Thursday, 22 March 2012 14:34 by Dr. Jane


You may be groaning inwardly at another post on canine periodontal disease, but the doggone truth is, many of us pet parents could stand to freshen up on the topic. That’s not a guess, it’s a fact: 17 out of 20 dogs over the age of three have some level of periodontal disease that needs treatment. One of the most common canine diseases, it’s also one of the most easily prevented. Dental disease not only “stinks” at the source, it’s also known to negatively impact the health of the whole body. It’s not a stretch to say that to have true wellness, your dog’s teeth and gums need to be as healthy as possible. I know all of you are busy, so I’ll briefly cover the three most salient points to remember when it comes to canine dental care. You might want to take notes, or simply print this out for reference, as there will be an oral exam. At least, I certainly hope so!

1. Dental Disease Can Be Painful, Even Deadly
I’m sure all of you know that dental disease causes “doggie breath”, but you may not be aware that chronic inflammation can cause pain, lead to infections, and serves as a precursor to much more serious issues. For instance, severe periodontal disease is significantly correlated with increased risk of heart disease, such as infected heart valves (Glickman et al., 2009). Chronically inflamed and infected gums also increase the risk for kidney disease, limiting the amount of toxins they can purify from the blood (Glickman et al., 2011). I’d ask that you keep in mind that inflamed and infected gums are just as painful for dogs as they are for humans, potentially lowering your companion animal’s quality of life. The bottom line is, a healthier mouth makes for a happier dog!

2. For Dental Disease, There is No Magic Bullet
Even though periodontal disease is all-too-common, many veterinary researchers are still baffled by its causes, and therefore, the best method for prevention. We do know that plaque-forming bacteria play a role. A recent study (Riggio et al., 2011) showed a wide diversity of canine oral flora, both in health and disease states, including previously undiscovered species of bacteria!

Not knowing exactly what’s going on makes it especially difficult to find a cure, but that hasn’t stopped big companies from trying. In 2006, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer introduced a vaccine for periodontal disease, aimed at targeting three specific bacteria associated with periodontitis (including Porphyromonas denticanis, P. gulae, and P. salivosa). Following the release of the vaccine, Pfizer Animal Health conducted a 4-year review to determine the true effectiveness of the vaccine. Not surprising to me, there was no demonstrable reduction in the progression of periodontal disease, and the company discontinued this product in April of 2011. As a holistic veterinarian, I don’t usually put much faith in vaccines, other than core vaccinations.

Simply put, when it comes to periodontal disease, there are no magic bullets.

3. An Ounce of Prevention is Your Best Bet
Recent studies indicate that treatment of canine periodontal disease may not resolve the attendant inflammation, which means negative repercussions may continue for some time (Rawlinson et al., 2011). The only dependable method is to try and prevent onset of the disease in the first place. I can’t stress this enough … for the most part, periodontal disease is preventable! I strongly encourage you to make canine dental care a top priority at an early age. Your efforts will be rewarded, as proper dental can improve your dog’s chances of long-term health.

The most effective way to prevent gum disease is to brush your dog’s teeth on a regular basis. Don’t worry if you don’t know how – simply watch this Dr. Sarah video to learn the proper technique. In addition to routine brushing, a sound, wholesome diet provides a great foundation for health, and feeding your dog Life’s Abundance Gourmet Dental Treats will provide additional nutrients to help support healthy teeth and bones. Our Dental Treats also feature a variety of whole grains, added calcium, extra phosphorous and even a dash of parsley to help freshen breath.

If your pup already has tartar build-up and evidence of gum disease, do not despair! Make an appointment today to have her teeth cleaned and any infections treated. Soon, she’ll be back on the road to wellness.

Thank you for all you do to make the world a better place for companion animals. (Dr. Jane is the one that formulated these treats and Life’s Abundance Pet food. She was seeing all the disease that pets were having when she worked as a traditional Vet. This spurred her to dig in and see what was causing yeast in ears, skin problems, etc. Check out the food…and it gets delivered to your house!)

Dr Jane Bicks Dr. Jane Bicks

Riggio MP, Lennon A, Taylor DJ, Bennett D. Molecular identification of bacteria associated with canine periodontal disease. Vet Microbiol. 2011 Jun 2;150(3-4):394-400. Epub 2011 Mar 10.

Rawlinson JE, Goldstein RE, Reiter AM, Attwater DZ, Harvey CE. Association of periodontal disease with systemic health indices in dogs and the systemic response to treatment of periodontal disease. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2011 Mar 1;238(5):601-9.

Glickman LT, Glickman NW, Moore GE, Lund EM, Lantz GC, Pressler BM. Association between chronic azotemic kidney disease and the severity of periodontal disease in dogs. Prev Vet Med. 2011 May 1;99(2-4):193-200. Epub 2011 Feb 23.

Glickman LT, Glickman NW, Moore GE, Goldstein GS, Lewis HB. Evaluation of the risk of endocarditis and other cardiovascular events on the basis of the severity of periodontal disease in dogs. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2009 Feb 15;234(4):486-94.

Beard G, Emily P, Milligan & Williams C: American Animal Hospital Association, Veterinary Dentistry, Course I, 1989.

what your pet eats

Is very important. Should be close to human food, holistic and well balanced with nutrition and vitamins.  This will provide longevity and health. Which in turn lowers your vet bills.

It should be low in carbs, no fillers and solid protein…no meat by-products.  Also check your label and see if you have “animal digest” in the food you are feeding your cat or dog.  That could mean rendered animals that were diseased and full of toxic drugs. Would you feel good about eating that?  Keep them healthy and happy!

Go here and compare the ingredients that are in the the food your dog or cat is eating.



Pets staying home while you travel this summer???

Please visit this site and watch this enjoyable video by Dr. Sarah.  It covers the best ways to make sure your beloved pet can be cared for while you and your family are on vacation.

I like the idea that they can sniff your bags and “know” that you are going out of town.  Talk with them as you pack your suitcase. Tell them they will be well cared for and you will be back, soon!   Give them one piece of your clothing to take along in their “over night bag” so they have your smell near them.   maybe include one of their toys.  Make sure their tags are up to date with important numbers. Make sure your Pet is Micro chipped.

BEST PET FOOD and why…..

The secret to superior pet food lies in the formula itself – not only in the ingredients, but also in the proportions of those ingredients to each other. While many dog foods may meet technical standards for dietary requirements, some pet food manufacters cut corners on their ingredients, which affects the quality of the overall formula. To help you choose the best food for your dear companion, we’ve identified eight crucial measures upon which all dog foods can be judged. Keep in mind that the food you choose should score well in every category, as does Life’s Abundance Premium Health Food for Puppies and Adult Dogs. Remember, your dog deserves nothing less than the very best.

See Beyond the Hype
The brand you feed is the most important decision you can make as a pet parent. Because your dog eats the same food every day, it’s his primary source of nutrition. And a superior dog food can help to foster a solid nutritional foundation, which can help sustain your dog over a long and healthy lifetime.

As a caring pet parent, it’s important that you see through marketing ploys designed to mislead you about the quality of ingredients and their intended dietary benefits.

Additionally, some competing brands use wheat and wheat glutens, corn and corn glutens, as well as artificial food colors and preservatives. We never have, and we never will. That’s part of our commitment to you and your dog to provide the safest and most innovative nutritional formulas for a better life.

The Whole is Greater than the Sum of its Parts
While the top five ingredients of a given dog food provide the consumer with insight into the nutritional priorities of a pet food maker, they don’t tell the whole story. Every ingredient plays a critical part, which is why we provide a comparison based upon eight different quantitative measures. Furthermore, the secret to superior pet food lies in the formula itself – not only in the ingredients, but also in the proportions of those ingredients to one another.

The significance of the ratios cannot be understated. Our long-time pet food formulator, Dr. Jane Bicks, stresses the importance of synergism, or the interaction of ingredients, because the proper proportions help to maximize the nutritional impact of a formula. As with any recipe, if you use the wrong ratios, you will get very different results.

With quality ingredients working synergistically with one another, you can be certain that you’re providing the very best for your companion animal.

Pet Food or Junk Food?
Not all pet food manufacturers have your dog’s best interests in mind. Unfortunately, many use ingredients that you would never knowingly feed your dog. Some intentionally attempt to mislead you with clever marketing, touting ingredients that sound appealing to you but are not actually suited to the nutritional requirements of dogs. At Life’s Abundance, we focus on what canines truly need to help ensure a lifetime of good health, rather than on making the cheapest possible product that might not fulfill your dog’s dietary needs.

Only Everything Wholesome
Our premium dog food recipe features safe and wholesome ingredients. But for a dog food to be considered truly exceptional, we believe it must meet several specific nutritional criteria. Not only should a dog food score well on the majority of eight distinct measures, it must score well on every measure. Even if one area is overlooked, you could be compromising your dog’s chances for wellness and longevity.

To account for the unique dietary needs of your dog, all of the following must be included in the formula: a diverse array of high-quality proteins; healthy species-specific animal fat; a guaranteed amount of the antioxidant Vitamins A, C and E; a guaranteed amount of omega-3 fatty acids (for optimal benefit omega-3’s should be scientifically balanced with omega-6 fatty acids); prebiotics; a guaranteed amount of probiotics; an array of vegetables; and fruits. Furthermore, to minimize health risks, no wheat or wheat gluten or corn or corn gluten-based products should be featured.

If your current food doesn’t score well on every single one of these eight distinct measures, we strongly suggest that you feed your beloved canine Life’s Abundance.

A Tradition of Quality and Safety
Even though the quality and variety of ingredients provide insight to the strength of a food’s formula, they shouldn’t be your only consideration when choosing the right food for your dog. In fact, the process by which the food is made is equally vital. Life’s Abundance premium dry health food is prepared by a family-owned, third-generation pet food maker, where creating a high quality food is not only a priority and a family tradition, it’s an art form. Batches of food are produced in limited runs on a weekly basis, minimizing periods of storage and helping us to deliver the freshest-possible product to your front door.

What You Don’t Know Could Be Harming Your Pet
When you pick up a bag of dog food from a retail store, it’s impossible to know the history behind the product you’re holding. You don’t know how long it’s been on the shelf, or how long it lingered in the storeroom before being placed on the shelf. You don’t know how long it was stowed in a shipping container, subjected to temperature extremes. You don’t know how long it was stockpiled in a distribution center prior to shipping. In fact, many mass-produced dog foods are stashed away in tractor trailers without any form of climate-control for weeks, even months. And, you have no idea if proper handling of bags and pest-control are priorities for the packaging centers and warehouses where the product is bagged and stored.

Why does it matter that you can’t know the history of the retail product? As you might correctly guess, the way a dog food is stored can directly affect its nutritional value and safety. The bottom line is, just because it’s store-bought doesn’t mean it’s fresh.

Control over our Formulas from Start to Finish
At Life’s Abundance, we don’t leave factors that impact safety and quality to chance. Our commitment to providing your dog with a superior food goes well beyond the formula and the individual ingredients. To ensure the safety and quality of the final product, we exercise control, from preparation to packaging to storage.

As we mentioned before, Life’s Abundance Premium Health Food for Puppies and Adult Dogs is prepared in small batches on a weekly basis. We test the quality of our foods to ensure the integrity of ingredients and to make sure the formula is adhered to. Immediately after each batch is prepared, it’s bagged and shipped directly to one of our three warehouses.

Our shipping departments take pride in the speedy yet careful handling of our products. When you place an order, your dog food is shipped via UPS or USPS, with an average transit time of only three business days.

Thanks to our strict adherence to quality and safety, we’ve created a streamlined process that, in most cases, means that the food that’s delivered to your door is only 4 to 6 weeks old.

The Smart Choice for Caring Pet Parents
While this comparison is by no means comprehensive, we offer this service as a way to start your quest for the best food for your dog. As a caring pet parent, we expect that you’ll have questions. And we’re ready to provide answers. As an existing or potential customer, you have toll-free access to our expert customer support staff, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Eastern Time.    Additionally, Dr. Jane conducts bi-weekly conference calls, providing an open forum where you can put questions directly to our pet product formulator. These calls also include in-depth discussions about her formulas, the superior ingredients we use and other helpful pet-related information. The Life’s Abundance team is ready to assist you to the best of our abilities.

Formulated by a vet, for the long-term health of your pet
Dr. Jane Bicks is defined by her absolute dedication to the health and happiness of companion animals. One of the nation’s leading holistic veterinarians, she serves as our pet product formulator and as the driving force behind our commitment to improve pet health. When you feed your dog Life’s Abundance, you will be providing a cutting-edge formula, created to help maintain the health and increase the longevity of your canine companion.


Are you feeding your Pet the BEST you can?

Please look for the PREMIUM animal food….NO WHEAT, NO CORN, They can=skin allergies and yeast infections

“Fillers”, “empty calories”, for example, corn and rice. Corn and rice are carbohydrates that raise blood sugar levels rapidly and create hormonal signals that have negative long term effects on metabolism and weight gain. Corn and rice also supply “empty calories“. Empty calories have the same energy content of any other calorie, but these calories lack accompanying beneficial nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fiber and/or antioxidants. Corn and rice are not healthful for pets in the large quantities used my many pet food companies. Read your labels. It’s up to you to take care of your pet.  Corn and rice are often the main ingredients in other foods and treats because they are a cheap way to fill up a bag and still meet basic energy requirements. This trend has played a major role in the obesity epidemic our pets are now facing. These corn and rice based diets are also often responsible for chronic symptoms of maldigestion, such as gas, bloating, and diarrhea.

Life’s Abundance makes healthier carbohydrate choices by using whole grains such as barley and oats (groats) and vegetables. By using high quality natural ingredients, L.A. has no need to use additives for flavors, resulting in a much healthier product.

“Meat meals“, for example “chicken meal” or “lamb meal”.   These meals are often the major ingredients in numerous pet foods. While these meals do provide a source of protein, the quality and digestibility of that protein is highly variable and these products have been associated with adverse food reactions. It is because of this that meat meals are always considered unfit for human consumption. L.A. chooses to use only whole meats as the sole source of meat protein.

By-products, for example, “chicken by-products” or “beef by-products”. This refers to clean “parts”, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals. It includes, but is not limited to bones, feathers, feet, lungs, spleen, kidneys, brain, blood, bone, fatty tissue and stomachs and intestines freed of their contents. This is a cheap way for pet food companies to keep the protein levels “high”, although not always high quality, while keeping food production costs low. Whole meats should be the only source of meat protein and other high quality protein sources can contribute other highly digestible sources of protein. Life’s Abundance uses only whole meats as the source of protein and vegetables as additional highly digestible sources of protein.

Food additives and preservatives: Corn syrup, sugar, molasses, propylene glycol and MSG are examples of artificial flavors frequently used in pet food manufacturing to disguise inferior food quality and some of these additives give dampness and flexibility to semi-moist foods and treats.  They cause dehydration and that can lead to kidney problems.  These are often additional sources of  non-nutritious calories that contribute to pet obesity. If a pet food company is using high quality natural ingredients, like Life’s Abundance, there will be no need to enhance the flavor of the food with these additives. They gobble it up like their owner’s plate of food…(more or less, it is!)

Preservatives:  BHA, BHT, sodium nitrite and nitrate are examples of food preservatives that should be avoided. Life’s Abundance Holistic Pet food excludes these preservatives.  Preservatives are used in the production of pet food to limit the growth of bacteria or inhibit oxidation of food. Our food is 4-5 weeks old when delivered to your door. FRESH!  Many preservatives are known to be carcinogens (cancer-causing) in humans and pets and should be avoided. Natural alternatives for preserving food includes a mixture of varying forms of vitamin E called mixed tocopherols, rosemary extract and even the process of freeze-drying. Look for these qualities in your pet’s food source.

Artificial colorings/dyes. FD&C Blue No. 1, Red No. 40, Yellow No. 5 are common examples. These artificial colorings are used in many pet products to entice owners into a purchase; however, they have ZERO nutritional value and may be responsible for adverse or allergic reactions. Natural alternatives are simple—no dyes! Many vegetables are deeply pigmented and give a natural hue to food.

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and Buy what is best for your pet.  Do the autoship program…you will get the discounted (wholesale price). get 2-3 bags every 12 weeks. That will cut your shipping cost! Thanks you! Be well and Stay well.

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