Choline Chloride in Dog Food: If you are looking for a diet that will support your dog’s liver and heart health, you may be interested in one that includes choline, as it is a natural component of many nutritious foods. Choline is an essential nutrient found in many different types of food. It has been shown to have several benefits including promoting the healthy development of the nervous system and improving liver function.

Choline Chloride in Dog Food

In recent years, there has been increased research into the benefits of choline-rich diets for dogs on certain conditions such as liver disease which have also led to some changes in pet foods labels and manufacturing policies.

This informative article provides more information about choline chloride and how it may help with your dog’s health issues.

What is Choline?

Choline is an amino acid that is found in many foods such as eggs, beef, poultry, fish, liver and some vegetables. It works with other nutrients to help break down homocysteine levels in the body which can ultimately lead to heart disease and other conditions.

The body only naturally produces a small amount of choline so it must come from diet or supplements. The good news for many dogs health conditions such as liver disease is that choline supplements are relatively easy to come by as it can be found in regular dog foods usually as choline chloride.

Is choline bad for dogs?

Choline is actually very healthy for dogs, especially if they are suffering from liver disease. Studies have shown that choline-rich diets have been proven to offer a protective effect on the liver. Other studies proved that choline could also reduce the risk of heart disease in humans. Other studies showed that choline could be a natural source of hydration as it can help to keep your dog’s blood flowing and help prevent kidney failure caused by dehydration.

As we mentioned earlier, choline is an important nutrient for dogs health issues such as liver and heart diseases, which may explain why it is included in many types of dog foods today. It has also been shown to be beneficial for humans and is often included in prenatal vitamins for pregnant women.

Why dogs need choline?

Dogs require choline to support their liver function and stay healthy. When dogs don’t have enough choline, they may start experiencing muscle tremors or seizures, which means their liver isn’t working properly. Choline may help prevent liver disease by keeping bile acids from building up in the body. Bile acids are substances that help your dog digest fat by breaking it down when he eats a meal. Without enough betaine and choline, bile cannot be converted into an energy source that can be used by the cells of your dog’s body.

How is choline chloride included in dog food?

Choline chloride is used as a processing aid or preservative. This can be found in both dry and wet formulas. It is often used to help create a more water-soluble version of the other ingredients used to make the canned product, or to prevent ingredients clumping together during the canning process. It is also often placed into some products as an ingredient for its detergent qualities. Choline chloride may also be added as an additive for human foods and may be able to cause adverse reactions in some animals.

How effective is choline?

Although we’ve discussed some of the benefits that choline can offer dogs, it is very important to note that the best way to ensure your pet gets enough choline is by feeding him a dog food that has been designed to help keep him healthy. While you may be able to give your dog an extra helping of vegetables or other foods that are rich in choline, they may not include other necessary ingredients such as vitamins and minerals that are vital for your dog’s health. These supplements can also cause an upset stomach and other gastrointestinal issues for your pet if he doesn’t already have a sensitive stomach.

Choline chloride is a chemical compound found in humans and animals.

How is choline given?

Choline should be given to your pet in a capsule form or mixed into food. It is not recommended that you give your pet choline via injection because it can cause serious side effects including elevated heart rate, increased blood pressure, and respiratory distress.

Where does choline come from?

Choline is often found in egg yolks, fish, liver, leafy vegetables, legumes, meat and soybeans. However, many dog foods also contain this substance in its synthetic form. It is also available as a supplement that can be given to dogs by mouth or in capsules or tablets.

How do I store choline?

The best way to store choline is as a liquid at room temperature. If you are concerned about keeping this supplement safe, you can also keep it in the refrigerator. We recommend storing all supplements in a cool, dark place out of reach of pets and children.

What side effects can choline cause?

Like any other drug or dietary supplement, choline side effects can occur. Side effects are rarely serious but they should be monitored just the same to ensure your pet’s health is not compromised.

Focus on Nutrients: Choline

Choline is a chemical compound that belongs to the family of B-vitamins. Choline is primarily found in breast milk and is considered important for normal brain development in newborns and infants. While humans can produce choline on their own, dogs must receive their choline through their diets.

Choline deficiency in dogs impacts the liver which can result in a variety of symptoms associated with poor liver function such as tremors or seizures. There are many types of ailments that may cause a choline deficiency including hereditary causes, genetics, dehydration, poor diet, congenital disorders or disease as well as toxins. The liver is an important organ that produces bile, which helps your dog digest fat and flushes out toxins.

Choline is not found in high concentrations in a lot of foods, but some foods naturally contain choline and can be good sources of this nutrient. Foods that contain choline include: broccoli, almonds, kale, boiled eggs, walnuts and cauliflower. You can also find choline through supplements which are relatively inexpensive and can come in either capsule form or in liquid form. If you are looking to use a supplement to give your dog extra help it is recommended to start with small doses of around 100 mg/kg/day to begin with.

If you are using a supplement that comes in liquid form, your dog will likely need to consume 30-40 drops daily to receive enough choline. Ensure that your dog is getting enough water as well as their regular amount of food at each meal.

Some pet owners prefer to supplement with choline by giving their dog a pill or tablet. However, a number of toxicity cases have been reported that have occurred when dogs accidentally eat choline supplements. Depending on how fast your dog ingests the supplement can be enough to cause signs of toxicity in as little as 30 minutes.


Different forms of choline – phosphatidylcholine, alliynoylglycerophosphocholine and alpha-(1-3)-acid glycerophosphocholine – the three main types of choline used in terms of supplementation
What is it?
Corn germ meal is created after the germ of the corn kernel has been removed from its endosperm. The germ is a large part of the endosperm which makes up 50% of the whole corn kernel. This is one way to create choline for your dog. Corn germ meal supplements contain a number of different forms of choline that are extracted from this part of the corn kernel.


CORN GLUTEN MEAL (CGM) is a by-product of corn wet-milling, produced when the gluten from wheat flour is extracted from whole corn. CGM has a protein content of 23 to 26 percent and provides excellent nutritional value. It provides a good source of essential amino acids for cats, although in comparison with meat it has less tryptophan and cysteine for protein synthesis.

It’s also an alternative protein source to meat for fussy eaters and sensitive cats who may not tolerate eating muscle meats or fish. CGM contains 12 to 14 percent essential fatty acids, making it an excellent source of healthy fats.


Dried egg products contain excellent amounts of choline, providing them with essential benefits for pets. Dried egg products include eggs, eggs shells and egg yolks.


Egg yolks contain essential amino acids, and the high quality protein found in whole eggs is also available in egg yolks. These nutrients are good for pets as they are an excellent source of B vitamins, as well as minerals such as iron and phosphorus. Egg yolk consumption has been shown to improve kidney function; while research is limited on the effects of feeding whole eggs vs. egg yolks, at this time it appears that all forms of egg consumption provide similar health benefits for pets.


Chicken by-product meal is a high protein and fat rendered product that provides essential amino acids for animal health. It contains choline as well as a number of other nutrients.


Sunflower meal is created from the remaining parts of sunflower plants which has been extracted after oil extraction. This high protein meal is an excellent supplement to any pet’s diet. It contains high levels of Omega fats 3 & 6, which help keep your pet’s skin healthy and shiny, promoting natural growth and shedding without intense itching or scratching which may be caused due to allergies or other skin disorders.


Cassava root flour is a gluten-free flour that is made from the cassava root. The cassava root is an edible tuberous root which can be found in tropical areas of South America, Africa and Asia. It contains high levels of essential amino acids and minerals as well as soluble fiber which helps to promote digestive health.


Vitamin K is a fat soluble vitamin, which is found in animal products. There are two forms of Vitamin K; vitamin K1 and vitamin K2. Vitamin K1 is only found in plant products while vitamin K2 is found in animal products such as meat, cheese, and eggs.

In dogs the main sources of these vitamins are egg yolk and liver. However there are some supplements that can also be used as sources if your dog does not regularly get these vitamins from its diet. These include Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (VitaminK) which is a form of Vitamin-K1 supplement that can be used to supplement dogs with this important nutrient.


Vitamin-B6 is important for the creation of red blood cells in dogs, and when the canine kidney fails to remove toxins from the blood, then these red blood cells become damaged and the dog can develop anemia.

It may also help keep your dog’s adrenals working correctly, if they are being affected by stress because of over-excitement. Vitamin-B6 may also benefit the brain by helping to produce neurotransmitters that regulate nerve function.


Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin and the recommended dietary allowance is approximately 1000 IU per day. Vitamin A helps your dog’s eyesight by ensuring that the retina of their eyes remain healthy. This vitamin aids in the development of epithelial tissues, which are the top layer of skin that is formed after birth.

Vitamin A suppliment comes from animal or plant sources; without supplementation there will not be enough Vitamin-A in your dog’s diet to prevent any type of deficiency.

Bee Pollen has its origins in flowers, but its benefits extend far beyond their nutritional value. Bee pollen contains a whole range of nutrients, including vitamins and powerful antioxidants that help support the immune system for improved overall health.


Vitamin-B12 is a fat soluble vitamin and is often included as part of a dog’s diet when additional supplementation may be required to improve health. Vitamin-B12 is created by bacteria found in the intestines of animals and can be found in small amounts in some plant products.

When your dog’s body does not have enough vitamin B12, it can cause severe anemia, leading to symptoms such as pale gums. Vitamin-B12 helps to create red blood cells, which are necessary for carrying oxygen throughout the body at a faster rate than without this essential nutrient.

Pork Meat Meal

Pork meat meal is a high-protein and fat-rich rendered product that provides amino acids to support healthy skin and coat. It contains choline, which is an important source of nutrition for dogs.

Animal Digest

Animal digest is a rendered product created from a variety of animal tissues. It provides essential amino acids as well as other essential nutrients for dogs in a highly digestible form. It also helps to disguise the smell of the actual supplement and make it more palatable for dogs to consume without fussing over their meal time.

Sodium Selenite, calcium, calcium iodate, nutrition, fish, D-Calcium Pantothenate, L-Lysine, zinc amino acid chelate, Vitamin A supplement, copper amino acid chelate, Vitamin E supplement, riboflavin supplement (Vitamin B2), manganese amino acid chelate, niacin supplement (Vitamin B3), calcium pantothen.


Dried egg product, corn gluten meal, brewers rice, whole grain corn, chicken by-product meal (natural source of choline), corn germ meal (natural source of choline), dried beet pulp, fish oil, flaxseed (natural source of Omega 3 and. 6 fatty acids), potassium chloride, calcium carbonate, salt, natural flavors, alfalfa meal (natural source of chlorophyll and plant minerals), vitamins (dl-alpha tocopherol acetate [source of Vitamin E], l-ascorbyl-2-polyph. oxyphosphate [source of Vitamin C], biotin, d-calcium pantothenate, riboflavin supplement, l-lysine, vitamin A acetate, pyridoxine hydrochloride [source of Vitamin B6], thiamine mononitrate.

Is pyridoxine hydrochloride safe for dogs?

Pyridoxine hydrochloride is a form of vitamin B6 and it is commonly included in dog foods as choline. It is also a common additive in human foods and is considered safe to use. Pyridoxine hydrochloride doesn’t carry with it any known side effects for your pet. However, some dogs may develop an allergy to this substance which will cause them to break out into hives or have an allergic reaction that can result in the development of food allergies.

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What ingredients should you avoid in dog food?

When it comes to ingredients that are harmful in dog food, there are plenty of things that you must avoid:

Corn: Besides being a grain and highly refined, corn is also a common allergen. It can make your dog’s digestive system very upset and leave him with diarrhea.

Wheat: Wheat can cause your dog to become sick because it easily passes through the blood-brain barrier, which is where vital brain functions take place. Studies have shown that dogs may have negative reactions to wheat; but wheat also contains gluten, which can cause gastrointestinal problems when dogs ingest significant amounts of it.

Soy: Soy is one of the more common allergens in dogs, which can make your dog uncomfortable. The reason why soy may cause allergic reactions in dogs is because of its estrogen effects. Estrogen can also play a role in thyroid disorders.

Beef, chicken and fish: These types of meat are high in phosphorus and to a lesser extent protein, which will lead to problems in urination.

Canola Oil: This type of oil is very high in omega-6 fatty acids which can be harmful for your dog’s health. We recommend you not include any type of vegetable oil such as corn or soybean oil in your dog food. They are also high in phosphorus.

Other products that you should avoid are the following:

Animal fats such as tallow, lard, butter or ghee. These can lead to pancreatitis. You should only be using these types of fats if your dog has tested negative for pancreatitis and you know that he is fully protected from other bacteria known to be harmful such as Clostridium and E.coli. A letter from your vet will confirm this.

Unflavored gelatin: Gelatin can be difficult to digest even for dogs who don’t have any type of sensitivity. It can cause the animal to become ill with diarrhea.

Soy protein concentrate: This type of protein is high in phosphorus, making it another ingredient that should be restricted by dog owners. It can also cause gastrointestinal issues including upset stomachs and vomiting.

There are many other ingredients that you may want to avoid for your dog’s safety, but these are some of the more frequently used ones. Some of these ingredients include corn, wheat and soy and others that have similar potential allergen problems such as beef tallow, which is a type of fat made from rendered beef fat.


Choline Chloride in Dog Food