Linda Arndt ~ Canine Nutritional Consultant

Blackwatch Feed Program for OCD Repair

Introduction to OCD Repair

This feed program offers suggestions for nutritional support through diet and supplements to help repair OCD. The Supplement Kit you will ned is Called
OCD Repair Kit#9

For assistance for HOD, Pano, Knuckling over and Bowing, use this
Feed Program Kit# 5


Often you hear the cause of OCD - Osteochondritis Dissecans is genetics, but I have seen OCD repaired with diet alone, if the dog is young and you catch it in time. So it's not always genetic and in fact I feel most of it is strictly diet!.

Some OCD's can be due to an early injury as well, but those dogs diets were always compromised and therefore the dog could not withstand some trauma during developmental stages. I always recommend x-raying all leg joints if diagnosed with OCD - if it is only in one spot, then you will know it is due to an injury, trauma etc. to that joint area.

OCD is generally caused by a poor quality diet with unusable minerals or high calcium levels (watch grainfreed diets- I do not recommend them for growth for this reason) or one lacking in important trace minerals necessary to lay down cartilage to make bone. The important thing is if you catch OCD early you can often repair it with a good diet and the supplements for OCD Repair Kit#9. I always recommend shots of Adequen as well while working through this nutritionally - ask your vet about these shots.

I always recommend acupuncture and chiropractic work for orthopedic cases. I have used it on my dogs with very good results. To locate a vet practitioner in your area click here for a directory.

American Holistic Veterinary Site

The OCD Repair Program

This program consist of getting your dog on a quality dog food, some supplements in the form of the Kit #9 and shots of Adequen (talk to your vet) to help repair any damage.

I have seen results in dogs as old as 8 months depending on the dog, the severity of the situations and the nutritional care during and after the dog is repaired. This is a life long program once this has happened and if this can be repaired using Kit #9, and when you are ready to move to a maintanence level I suggest CORE 4Kit #39 because it has joint support as well.

For a phone consultation with the Great Dane Lady, you must set up an appointment 24 hours in advance by calling: 1-765-284-8288 and setting up an appointment in advance.
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Blackwatch Feed Program FOR OCD REPAIR

1.DOG FOODS - I will provide you with a list of approved foods below, in the following catagories: holistic dry, holistic grain free, dehydrated and raw foods, so you have options. I do not recommend any grain free or raw diets for large breed growth until they are 8 months old or 3/4 of their normal size, just to be on the safe side. No feed trials have been done on large/giant breeds on the grain free or raw diets to date, so I will not recommend them. We KNOW we can raise them on a quality holistic kibble with a 10% raw component, if you wish, and have no problems, but not a totally raw or grain free diet, please!! You can locate a retailer by going to the Precise website


3. OPTIONS FOR VARIETY - To add some variety to your dogs life, use a holistic canned food or a dehydrated RAW meat diet because it is balanced in calcium and phosphorus as well as tested for pathogens and parasites, unlike what you get from the store. I like to use Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Raw Foods, this allows me to use a component of raw along with my Precise kibble and it includes fruits, veggies and botanicals. I like the Embark, but they have several others that work (Force, Thrive, Keen, etc). so you can rotate for variety and sounder nutritional practices. If you are into feeding a totally raw diet or raw with your kibble the brand I use and recommend is Darwins - and the ship it right to your door. Again, Please do not feed growing large and giant breeds a totally raw diet until they are past their drastic growth stages - 10 months. 4 lbs of dehydrated raw makes up to 17# of wet food!

Other options, use wholesome human foods such as yogurt, buttermilk, kefir, cottage (not daily), scrambled eggs, berries, melons, peaches, apples, banana, tomato, broccoli, cauliflower, squash, sweet potato (not for dogs with yeast issues), green beans, peas, zucchini are all things your dogs can have with their daily food. Pulverizing veggies helps them to digest it better or lightly steam them is an option. Mine love homemade veggie soup and it's great as a filler for dogs with weight issues. Garlic is ok to use as well as avacado meat (not the skin or pit!!)

Linda's Very Veggie Soup For Variety or Weight Loss - 2 large cans of Organic chicken or beef broth - (low sodium for heart or elderly dogs- or homemade). Add LOTS of veggies - carrots, green beans, wax beans, peas, carrots, kale, zucchini, squash, tomatoes, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower and couple cloves of garlic and Celtic Sea Salt (only this type). The idea is to use this as the filler so you want it to be hearty and filling.

Warning: NO raw onions, grapes, raisins, chocolate or macadamia nuts. Keep sugar free gum and candy out of access to your pets because they have Xylotil sweetner in them which can kill your pet.

Introduction: The Blackwatch Feed Program Concept

The Blackwatch Feed Programs for all breeds, ages and sizes have been used by top breeders and owners here and abroad for over 40 years. The basis for these programs revolves around my CORE 4 Philosophy of Wellness, which I have written and lectured about for many years. Time has shown us that this idea of feeding our pets works because it promotes wellness and longevity in all breeds. The products I use or suggest are either of my own nutritional design, or products I use for my own animals and in feed trials over time. I try not to recommend companies that are unethical in their business practices and support the privatly owned retailers and manufacturers over the large conglomerate companies. This information is not to be used in lieu of veterinarian advice, diagnoses or treatment.


Precise Pet Foods - What I feed my dogs.

NutriSource - PurVita - Planet Organics Pet Foods - my back up diet

Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Raw

My List of Better Foods

Darwins Raw Diet

Raw Food Options

Diets for Dogs With Specific Health Needs

Let's Talk MORE about Dog Foods .....

Dog Foods - I like to give pet owners a variety of foods on my list of better foods (see above) so you have options to pick from for your pets. I only support the holistically minded "family owned" pet food companies and independant retailers. I do not support the large corporate pet food companies or large corporate retailers due to a "difference in philosophy". I have concerns over the unknown quality of ingredients, qualitiy of premix supplementation (types/levels), manufacturing, consistancy in of sourcing ingredients and unknowns in quality control and safe testing of the foods before market.

I do not recommend homemade diets due to the potential of imbalance, however, I do provide raw options (see above) if one wants to make a balanced homemade diet. There is so much misinformation out there in books and on websites, many of which promote diets that are not balanced, lacking in adequate forms of calcium, and far too time consuming for large or multiple dog owners to attempt to do as a program. There are many good food options today for you to pick from, that it is not necessary to make a totally homemade diet for your pet.

I feed 80% kibble 20 % Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Raw to my adults. Puppies I ease them into the Honest Kitchen as a mixer or gravy for their kibble.


> Holistic Dry Kibble - Meat based w/ quality grains OR Grain Free
> Holistic Dehydrated Diets - Meat based/w quality grain or Grain Free
> Raw Diets - Frozen, Fresh or Flash Frozen, Freeze Dried
> Canned Dog Food - Meat based w/grains OR Grain Free canned meat

I do not have a problem with a meat based diet that uses quality whole grains for their carbohydrate componennt, as long as it is low or no gluten and with fiber intact such as whole brown rice and oats. NO wheat, corn or soy!!

My first recommendation is one of the foods from the Precise or Precise Holistic Complete lineup of foods. All their foods are meat based, with quality, low gluten grains such as oats and brown rice OR their new PHC Grain Free with meat and chickpea which is no gluten, low glycemic index - perfect for dogs with allergies, yeast issues, cancer, well as healthy dogs.

NOTE: As a professional Pet Nutritional Consultant, I have had considerable design input into the design of the Precise Pet Foods and have designed thePrecise Holistic Complete (PHC) Large/Giant Puppy and Adult formulas, the Senior formula and input into the rest in the PHC Wild At Heart - Flight Line Duck/Turkey and Wild at Heart River Line - Salmon. I also managed the year long feed trials on the PHC foods. The Precise Holistic Complete lineup was Awarded Top Pet food for 2010 by Pet Industry Magazine.

For Large & Giant Breed Puppies Use:

Precise Holistic Complete Large/Giant Breed Puppy - 23% protein/12% fat
This food is designed specifically for slow even growth in large and giant breeds. Calcium levels are right at 1.3% (1.2-1.5% best range).
Puppies can stay on this food until 8-12 months of age or longer unless they need more calories to fill out for showing. After 8 months you can move to the PHC Large/Giant Breed Adult formulaand even rotate within the Precise Wild at Heart Line - Duck/Turkey or Salmon.

The Amount to Feed "Chart" For Large/Giant Breeds (print out)

Puppy Guidelines - How to Raise A Puppy - (print out)

Puppy- Demodectic Mange, Vaginitis, Puppy Acne, Bladder Infections

Puppy Hiccups

Importance of a Crate and Crate Training

How To Tape Cropped Ears AND Should I Crop My Puppy

When to Spay and Neuter

Surgery and Anesthesia Info for Giant Breeds

HOD Growth Problems

Knuckling Over/Bowing

For Large & Giant Breed Adults - You have several options:

Precise Holistic Complete Large/Giant Breed Adult -25% protein/15% fat
Precise Holistic Complete - Adult Chicken - 24% protein/15% fat
Precise Holistic Complete - Wild At Heart - Salmon --24% protein 14% fat
Precise Holistic Complete - Wild at Heart - Duck/Turkey -24% protein 14% fat

Precise Foundation Formula
24% protein 12% fat- an all life stage formula, which supports growth. This is often used by large kennels or multiple pet family.

Precise Endurence Formula 30% protein 20% fat - real working or training also good for repair and getting ready for showing after a bitch has been in season.

Precise Competition Formula 27% protein 17% fat - great for pregnancy, showing, agility, rally, obedience etc.

Precise Holistic Complete - Senior - All Breeds -26% protein 11% fat - they maintain muscle mass, feel good, want to play and exercise yet the fat content is lower so they can loose weight but not coat.

These are all life stage formulas so they will support growth and elderly dogs with adequate calcium levels. They also support pregnancy and lactation.
See Feed Program for Pregnant bitches

For Small/Medium Breeds:

Precise Holistic Complete Sm/Med Puppy - 32% protein - 20% fat
Precise Holistic Complete Sm/Med Adult -
27% protein - 17% fat
Precise Holistic Complete - Wild At Heart - Salmon --24% protein 14% fat
Precise Holistic Complete - Wild at Heart - Duck/Turkey -24% protein 14% fat

Precise Endurence Formula 30% protein 20% fat - real working or training also good for repair and getting ready for showing after a bitch has been in season.

Precise Competition Formula 27% protein 17% fat - great for pregnancy, showing, agility, rally, obedience etc.

Precise Holistic Complete - Grain Free Pork/Chickpea 26% proetin 16% fat
Precise Holistic Complete - Grain Free Lamb/Turkey/Chickpea 27 % protein 17% fat - both these foods are "all life stages foods".

tThese are all life stage formulas so they will support growth and elderly dogs with adequate calcium levels. They also support pregnancy and lactation

Precise Holistic Complete - Senior - All Breeds -26% protein 10% fat - they maintain muscle mass, feel good, want to play and exercise yet the fat content is lower so they can loose weight but not coat.

Common Sense Feeding Information

Do not add hot water and soak your kibble, or let it set to soften, or put into microwave. This will destroy the integrity of the nutrients and probiotics that are sprayed on the outside of the dog food. If you are weaning, feeding sick or elderly dogs or dogs with no teeth, you are best to put the kibble in a blender and get a powder, then mix liquid water with it for a porriage consistancy then serve.

I feed my adults 2 times a day, puppies 3-4 times depending on age and by 16 weeks they should be on 2 times a day feedings.

I use filtered water on each dogs food, for large dogs 1/3- 1/2 cup of water with 3-4 tablespoons of holistic Precise canned meat or Honest Kitchen Dehydrated raw. You want the food moist, but not floating and sloppy (this is for large/giant breeds, reduce amount for smaller breeds accordingly). Do not microwave, soak or use hot or very warm water on your kibble. It will destroy the integrity of the friendly yogurt type cultures and the fragile vitamins/minerals and amino acids on the food.

    Commercial foods need to be fed with moisture so dogs don't over consume water after a meal, and so the kibble does not pull moisture from the dogs system in order to break down properly. Use "tepid" temperature water never hot or warm and never soak your food as it breaks down and destroys nutrients. Mix up and feed immediately. If they have loose stools, you may be using too much meat or water than necessary. Adjust that before you panic and think they are sick.

Drinking Water:
It is very important to NEVER withhold water from your dog. This can lead to over consumption and bladder infections. Use common sense, do not let them drink excessively after exercise or dinner. Like a horse, let them cool down and then drink. I have found if I have water available in several places, they never overdo it since they know it is available to them when they need it. That way they drink less amounts of water, but more frequently.

Withholding water for fear of bloat is a myth. Stress is the cause and bloat/torsion is the response. It is much more complicated that simply saying water is the cause of bloat.

Dogs with special dietary needs can use one of the Special CORE 4 Kits or have a program specifically designed for your pets.

(See my article on Bloat and Torsion for details)
(See On My Soapbox)


Heart Problems:
If you own a giant breed or one prone to heart problems it is recommended that you use the highest quality protein food and supplement with these components. These are nutritional substances from food sources and do not conflict with medications or each other and are good to use for heart disease.
FeedProgram for Heart Support


Support Information - Required Reading

Read this: Does My Vet Understand Nutrition?


There are several articles and photos of vaccine reactions at this website. You need to know how to prevent vaccine reactions, because vaccine reactions in some breeds will kill your dog in a slow agonizing death known as Immune Mediated Response, which is always misdiagnosed as HOD. So, here is info:

Prevention of Vaccine Reactions

The AAHA recommended schedule for vaccination

Dr. Jean Dodd's Vaccine Protocols

Vaccine Reaction Photographs

Special Alert - Antibiotic Reactions in Great Danes and Other Breeds.

Sulfonamide Antibiotics
Based on information gained from the National Bone Survey, I do not recommend using Sulfonamide* antibiotics to my puppy buyers because these drugs can cause serious side-effects like sloughing of skin and internal bleeding and HOD-like symptoms including;fever, aching joints, swollen joints, lack of mobility, depression and anorexia. The following antibiotics are sulfonamides.

  • Ditrim
  • Primor
  • Tribrissin
  • Bactrim
  • TMZ

Another commonly used, potentially troublesome antibiotics is Cephalexin (Keflex, Cefa-Tabs). This can also produces the same symptoms as HOD (fever,swollen/hot joints, immobility, anorexia) even in adult dogs. I will use Chephalexin, but with a watchful eye and if the dog starts acting lethargic and achy, we stop the antibiotic, since they are sensitive to it. Call the vet for an alternative antibiotic and make sure you are using a good Probiotic product to keep the digestive tract functioning properly.

I will not use Sulfonamides drugs on my dogs. A reaction can happen from 24 hours - 2 weeks of being on an antibiotic. If there is a reaction, my vet recommends Dexamethsone/Azium and discontinue use or antibiotic.

* Research references on Sulfonamides

Special Alert - Other Breeds:

For Collie/Sheltie/Aussie and Sighthound Owners (could effect some Great Danes)

For those people who own Collies, Shelties, Sighthounds, Aussies, Border Collies, any breeds with Collie background or mixed breeds with any of these dogs in them, it is critical that you know there are certain medications your dogs CAN'T take. Do not leave it up to your vet to know this..YOU must print this out and know it - it is a matter of life or death.

These dogs have a sensitivity to Ivermectin (Heartguard Heartworm medication. Only use Interceptor heart worm preventative. Other related drugs you can not use on these breeds or there will be neurological damage.
Other related drugs you can NOT use:

Metronidazole (which is used for diarrhea and giardia)

Ivermectin - Heart Guard

There are many different types of drugs that have been reported to cause problems in Collies, ranging from over-the-counter antidiarrheal agents like Imodium® to antiparasitic and chemotherapy agents. It is likely this list will grow to include more drugs as our research progresses.

Drugs that have been documented, or are strongly suspected to cause problems in dogs with the MDR1 mutation:

Ivermectin (antiparasitic agent)
Loperamide (Imodium®; over-the-counter antidiarrheal agent)
Doxorubicin (anticancer agent)
Vincristine (anticancer agent)
Vinblastine (anticancer agent)
Cyclosporin (immunosuppressive agent)
Digoxin (heart drug)
Acepromazine (tranquilizer)
Butorphanol (pain control)
Potential Problem Drugs

The following drugs may potentially cause problems when given to dogs that have the mutation. Biochemical studies have shown that this gene has the potential to act on over 50 different drugs.



Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine
Veterinary Clinical Pharmacology Laboratory
PO Box 2280
Pullman, WA 99165-2280
(Phone/FAX 509-335-3745)

Additional Support For The Adult Dog:

Go here for Spay and Neuter information
Go here for leaky bladder information
Go here for anal gland problems


Natural Ways To Manage Pain:

Remember pain is natures way of saying slow down, rest and relax. Most dogs are very stoic and even in pain will try to do what you want them to do even if it means it will hurt them, so use common sense. I do not like to completely mask the pain because they may over do it, yet I want them comfortable. I do not suggest crate rest as often suggested, I simply do not let the dogs out together, or with kids or when I know the neighborhood is active so they do not feel the need to be "the watch dog". I am very concerned about loss of muscle mass - atrophy - if a dog is crated too long during Pano (developmental stages). So common sense is the key.

This is my preference for handling pain through the use of a natural product like the two listed below. I would start with the Microlactin, which is included in the Orthopedic/Joint Support Kit#9 then if that does not do the trick, you can purchase online the Recovery SA for more serious pain issues. Use common sense when it comes to exercise - use free exercise alone in your back yard - no kids no dogs - and not during the time of the day when there might be traffic, kids returing from school or delivers where the dog goes into a barking frenzy. Normal house rest, if you are home and crate rest if you are away, is for me, a more reasonable way to handle it. If the dog lives in a crate all the time they will become anxious, depressed and slow the healing process. Imagine you hurt your leg and then someone locked you in the bathroom all day long - no fun = no heal fast.

Microlactin - (in the Kit #9)this is a natural anti-inflammatory and I had great success with this only for my older female that had a lame shoulder from playing too rough. It takes 1-2 weeks to load the system, double dose, before you see much help but in was a great help to my female and totally corrected her problem(bruise/inflammation), and because she is 6 I leave her on a normal maintanence dose daily for added insurence.

RecoverySA - For more pain I would use this product -but wait to see if you need it once kit#9 is used.

If your pet is not in great pain, you do not have to use this part of the program, it is an option to use instead of drugs like Deramaxx or Rimadyl which compromise the liver or can kill in short order! If they have a reaction to these drugs (which were pulled from the human market and their names were change for the pet industry) the reaction can be swift and deadly.



Anesthethesia / Surgery:
This is important information about anesthetics and giant breeds. Print out for your vet. Also for any elective surgery, i.e., spay, neuter or emergency surgery such as bloat/torsion.

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