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There is strong scientific evidence to support the use of dietary management in chronic kidney disease (CKD) in dogs (Roudebush and others 2010) and prepared therapeutic diets are available, however, veterinarians are often asked to endorse homemade diets instead. Homemade recipes are usually computer-generated (Remillard and Crane 2010), and to the authors knowledge, feeding trials to establish that they are complete and suitable for long-term feeding have not been conducted, nor have controlled, randomised clinical trials to prove efficacy in dogs with CKD.
Recipes for home-prepared diets intended for dogs with CKD have been evaluated using computer software (Larsen and others 2012), and it was concluded that they result in highly variable and often inappropriate diets, and that many recipes would not meet the nutritional and clinical needs of individual patients. Variability in content could also occur depending on raw ingredients selected for inclusion and methodology used to make the food.
Study hypothesis: Homemade rations prepared by several people in accordance with a set recipe would have similar content making them reliable for the management of canine CKD.
Aim: To determine whether veterinary nurses following a homemade recipe would construct diets with similar analyses.
Six veterinary nurses were asked to prepare a homemade diet according to a formula with a declared analysis (Table 1) that has been widely distributed and recommended by veterinarians for dogs with CKD (Elliott and …