6 In Dog

Attack of the Sugar

When I was in high school there was a girl who lived next door that was in 1st grade. I thought she had a pretty smile until I saw her cavity infested teeth up close. That was the first time I was glad that my mom had confiscated all my Halloween candy when I was a kid. Candy was a rare treat in our household and it probably saved me from a lot of teeth trouble.

I have tried to make sure to brush Kip’s teeth once or twice a week but it’s always a battle. He gags whenever I try to brush his molars and thrashes his head around this way and that. Then I discovered plaque and a little nook in the fold of his molars that I thought looked like a cavity and completely freaked out. It’s probably not a cavity, and I really hope it’s not a cavity, and the last time Kip was checked the Doctor didn’t say a word about Kip having any cavities…. but the war against plaque and cavities has officially begun.

I am determined to brush Kip’s teeth every night. To begin with, I can’t afford to let Kip have a cavity. Then there’s the scary stories on the forums where vet/dentists have to put dogs under drugs to scrape their teeth. I was fretting and wondering how on earth Kip could possibly have teeth problems when he wasn’t even eating candy! Calmly, Preston told me it was probably all that peanut butter I was giving him. Peanut Butter…?


You mean to tell me there is sugar in peanut butter?  Apparently, graduating from college doesn’t necessarily make you smart.  Here I am, well into my 20s and I didn’t even know there was sugar in peanut butter. For the past month I have been digging through forums and finding resources on dog nutrition and food while the peanut butter jar was dancing under my nose.


I ran to the peanut butter jar and turned to the ingredients. Peanuts of course. cane juice..is this sugar cane? natural oil blend, salt, molasses. My jaw dropped.  It can’t be! Whatever will I stuff Kip’s Kong with now? Peanut butter is what keeps Kip entertained while I’m at work. I felt betrayed. I’ve been betrayed by peanut butter.  It’s like I’ve been giving a spoon full of candy to Kip every other day. No wonder Kip loved peanut butter.

From this shock I have been checking the ingredients list for his treats as well. I found cane molasses in his Wellness “Wellbites” Chicken & Lamb flavor treat. Surprise surprise there was blackstrap molasses in the ‘Missing Link’ Omega-3 supplement. Except his kibble, everything seems to have molasses mixed in.

While sugar isn’t the only reason for bad teeth, there’s a reason why dentists don’t hand out candy in their office. I want to avoid sugar in Kip’s diet as much as possible. I’m not going to throw out all of Kip’s Wellness treats, but once I’m done I’m going to switch to the Wellness Pure Rewards treat line. According to the ingredients on their website, both the Wellbars and Wellbites have molasses in them. Their Pure Rewards are jerky bits that don’t have molasses in them.  The Ziwi Peak (New Zealand brand) Premium Meat and Mussel treats also don’t have molasses in them.



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