Antioxidants. The leading cause of death in dogs today is due to pet cancer. Genetic predisposition, diet and lifestyle are all considered to be major risk factors, and new evidence suggests that diet and anti-oxidant supplementation may play a more important role in cancer than previously indicated. A newly published study from Europe in which researchers evaluated pet diets and anti-oxidant supplements showed than anti-oxidants and vitamins played a larger role in cancer prevention than previously known.
Each pet owner submitted a diet and supplement diary, from which scientists matched each entry to its respective nutrient value(s). In follow-up, over half of the pets developed cancer within 10 years of entering the study with average survival times post diagnosis from six months up to two years.
Nutrition was evaluated in both study groups and compared to their healthy counterparts.
The data revealed that higher daily supplementation of the mineral selenium, reduced the risk of developing cancer by one-half and those participants receiving higher daily intakes of Vitamin C and Vitamin E reduced the risk of developing cancer by nearly 70 percent.
Each group above was compared to a control group receiving the minimal recommended daily allowance (RDA) of each nutrient.
These results seem to support the statement that anti-oxidant supplementation in pets appears to be warranted to help prevent cancer. Furthermore, should a causal relationship exist between antioxidant supplementation and pet cancer development the actual risk factor may be reduced by over 10 percent in canines receiving the upper levels of daily intake of these anti-oxidant supplements.