Our Guiding Principal
At Brothers our dogs are family members. We are committed to the welfare of this noble species who so willingly provide unconditional love to the humans who care for them. We are dedicated to creating the most nourishing, healing, supremely health promoting kibble dog food possible - a food that is worthy of the trust these beautiful, loving animals and their owners place in us. Our intention in all that we do is to create the highest good for all involved...our customers...our family...and every dog that we feed.
Too Many Problems
Since 2006 our family has owned and operated a dog food store in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. We have always carried the healthiest dog foods available and encouraged our customers to feed their pets the best; but despite our efforts we saw the same health problems over and over again in far too many dogs.
Our customers shared the solutions that had been suggested by health care practitioners, dog food manufacturers or dog food retailers - but the problems remained, or eventually returned. The "proposed solutions" weren’t solving the problems.
Often the problems were masked by the overuse of antibiotics or steroids which did not resolve the problems and, over time, usually made matters worse.
The majority of dogs we have seen over the years have been bothered at some point by at least a few of the following symptoms.
- Constant itching and scratching
- Licking or gnawing of the feet
- Biting areas of the body
- Rashes on the belly or thighs
- Bumps or fatty lumps
- Ear infections
- Hot spots
- Food Allergies
- Dull, thin, or brittle fur
- Allergic reactions to food
- Sensitive stomach or throwing up
- Itching, red, or irritated eyes
- Recurring diarrhea
- Excessive shedding
- Joint pain
- Bad odor or bad breath
- Dull, cloudy eyes
- Overweight problems
- Fatigue and lack of energy
The Body Of Evidence
- We ran our own "elimination" feeding trials on hundreds and hundreds of dogs for up to 3 years on the effects of eliminating grain and potato from their diet.
- We had years of "inside" experience with the dog food industry and personal daily experience running a dog food store.
- We spent thousands of hours doing years of research into nutrition as it related specifically to dogs.
FAULTY DIET was the main cause of most of the problems we were witnessing in dogs.
The Industry Feeding Trial Says Very Little
The industry standard for feeding trials was designed by AAFCO and it is revealing to be aware of just how little this feeding trial actually tells you about nutrition.
The AAFCO feeding trial is 6 months (26 weeks) long and only requires you to supply 8 dogs. At any point during the test you can remove 2 of the 8 dogs from the test without explanation. At the end of the test as long as the 6 remaining dogs are still alive and have not lost more than 15% of their weight - your food ‘passes’ the test and is declared “complete and balanced”.
AAFCO itself acknowledges that the feeding trial was NOT designed to “examine nutritional relationships to long-term health or disease prevention” but only to ensure that the food was not “harmful to the animal and would support the proposed life stage for 26 weeks”.
On the other hand, the Brothers Complete feeding trials WERE designed to “examine nutritional relationships to long term health and disease prevention."
To our knowledge the scope and focus of our research project on dog food - in the sheer number of dogs involved and the extended periods of time involved - has never been equalled.
To Design The Very Best
To assist us in creating Brothers Complete, we sought the help and guidance of a Ph.D. Animal Nutritionist whose thesis was on gut health and who had over 35 years experience designing dog food and overseeing research projects on the effects of diet on the health of dogs.
When we asked our Ph.D Animal Nutritionist to help us design the absolute healthiest kibble possible, he replied that in over 35 years in the pet food industry he had worked for almost every major dog food manufacturer at one time or another and not one of them had ever asked him how to make a dog food better - much less make it the best it could be. They would always give him a formula and tell him to make it cheaper.
The nutritional knowledge and philosophy that is incorporated into Brothers is based on input from Ph.D animal nutritionists, years of research, and a substantial body of empirical evidence (defined as: verifiable by observation or experience rather than theory or pure logic) that we gathered from years of elimination feeding trials involving over a thousand dogs in everyday life for substantial periods of time.
Information That Determined Design
1 - Dogs Are Different
2 - Gut Health Is Crucial
3 - 100 Trillion Bacteria in the Gut
4 - Leaky Gut
5 - Candida & Systemic Candida
6 - Skin Problems
7 - Ingredients That Heal
8 - The Raw Diet
9 - Additional Considerations
10 - Practical Details
Dogs Are Different Than Humans
1) Dogs are designed to convert fat into glucose, which the body uses for energy - (a process called Gluconeogenesis). Humans are built to convert starches and carbohydrates into glucose for energy. If dogs are continually fed high glycemic starches like grain and potato their Pancreas must work a lot harder than it was designed to because it must constantly produce high levels of insulin to bring the abnormally high blood sugar levels back down where they belong. Repeated overexposure to insulin increases resistance to insulin, which eventually leads to Diabetes. Thus the unusually high levels of Pancreatitis and Diabetes in dogs these days. Repeated exposure to excess insulin, by itself, is harmful to dogs.
2) People are omnivores while dogs are primarily carnivores. Wolves have a history of being carnivores that goes back millions of years and our cute domestic dogs are descended from the Gray Wolf. The Mitochondrial DNA of the domestic dog is 99.8 % identical to the DNA of a 5 million year old Gray Wolf. Mitochondrial DNA is what determines the cellular functioning and energy transfer in the body, which is what we’re talking about here. Nuclear DNA is different and is manipulated through breeding to produce different body types, personalities, and behavior.
Omnivores have jaws designed to grind from side to side to crush their food. Carnivores jaws do not go from side to side and cannot grind their food. Their jaws only open and close and are designed to rip off a chunk of meat and swallow it without much chewing. Dogs have mouths designed to eat meat and they have no dietary or nutritional need for carbohydrates.
3) People produce the enzyme (Amylase) in their mouths – dogs do not. An enzyme called Amylase is necessary to break down grain and potato and while people have this enzyme in their mouth to begin the digestion process - dogs do not. Dogs were not designed to eat carbohydrates as people were.
4) People have small stomachs that do not vary much in size. People are designed to eat small, frequent meals. People need a steady supply of starches and carbohydrates to provide them with glucose for energy and cellular functioning. They need to eat regularly throught the day.
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5) Dogs have stomachs that are like accordions and can expand enough to eat up to 8% of their body weight in raw meat at one meal. Dogs are designed to be able to eat one big meal of meat and fat and then function well for as long as a week or two on water alone because their body is designed to convert fat to glucose to provide them with a steady source of energy. This ability to produce glucose from fat enables them to hunt successively even if they haven’t eaten for a period of time because there are no guaranteed meals in the wild. Their ability to easily convert fat to glucose is called Gluconeogenesis. This is why dogs have done quite well for eons without grain or potato. Unlike humans, dogs are designed to extract their energy supply from fat supplies, not starches.
6) Differences in their digestive systems. People have digestive enzymes in their mouths, stomach, and their small intestines which are relatively long, and the process of food digestion is divided between these three. Dogs have no enzymes in their mouths and have very short small intestines as the vast majority of digestion in a dog is designed to take place in the stomach. The primary job of the small intestine in the dog is to absorb the result of the stomachs work.
Gut Health Is Crucial
The Gut is the CENTRAL CORE OF HEALTH IN THE ORGANISM. It is the essential foundation for generating health as well as combating disease.
A) Most of the Immune System (70% to 80%) is generated in the gut wall so if the health of the gut is compromised the ability of the body to defend itself is compromised as well.
B) The gut wall is lined with hairs (Cilia) that effectively increase its surface area from 2 sq. ft. to about 1,200 sq. ft. If the cilia are not kept clean and functional then the ability of the body to absorb nutrients from food can be severly reduced.
C) The Cilia also plays a part in returning excess water in the fecal matter to the body. If they are compromised then loose stool or diarrhea is usually the result.
D) The fecal matter in the colon is separated from the rest of the body by a layer of cells that is only one cell thick which line the inside wall of the intestines. These cells, called Enterocytes, are roughly square and butt together like little blocks. If the joints between them separate or are compromised and penetrated, then a condition known as “Leaky Gut” is created which allows fecal matter in the colon to leak through the gut wall and get into the blood stream. This condition is quite common in dogs that have been eating grain or potato for awhile.
E) The 100 Trillion bacteria that inhabit the colon are designed to:
- Maintain healthy functioning of the Enterocytes that line the inside wall of the colon and the Cilia that grow out of the colon wall and extract nutrients from the food.
- Maintain a healthy balance of beneficial bacteria (90 Trillion or so) to keep the pathogenic bacteria, like Candida Albicans, from over populating, penetrating the colon wall, and escaping into the blood stream to cause havoc and mayhem.
- Remove excess moisture from the fecal matter and return it to the body.
100 Trillion Bacteria in the Gut
The number of bacteria in the colon is about 10 times the number of cells in the entire rest of the body put together.
There are roughly about 10 Trillion cells that make up the body. In a healthy colon there are about 100 Trillion bacteria - as in 100,000,000,000,000. In other words, the number of bacteria in the dogs colon, equals the number of cells in 10 whole dogs.
How can you argue with 100 Trillion bacteria?
The HUGE number of beneficial bacteria in the colon suggests that a correspondingly high level of importance be assigned to their purpose there which is to maintain the integrity of a healthy, functioning system. The massive colony of beneficial bacteria in the gut is not only 10 times the number of cells that make up the rest of the body but they are crucial components of a healthy system - in fact, for all practical purposes...it could be argued that essentially IT IS THE SYSTEM when it comes to the origin and foundation of health in a mammal.
Leaky Gut is Very Real
Leaky Gut is