Nutrition of the animal suffering from cancer

We receive many enquiries about nutrition and composition of food in animals suffering from tumours. A tumour disease pulls at the reserves of the (animal) body, therefore paying attention to the nutrition is extremely important in the recovery process.
In the following section, we would like to briefly give you some tips that you should discuss with your veterinarian. We will also show you important information about the animals' intestines, as they play an important role in their health.

Diseased organ (system)

When considering a change in diet, attention should first be paid to the diseased organ in order to support it with the correct feeding. Your veterinarian will be able to choose the tastiest food for your pet from a wide range of renowned manufacturers. This should already take into account the nutritional components that are necessary for the organ system that have been identified in research. Also, the advisors of the feed producers can support your veterinarian with the selection.
If you prefer to cook the feed for your pet yourself, we would ask you to follow a feed calculation especially prepared for your pet by a veterinarian specialising in animal nutrition. On the Internet you will find addresses of specialised veterinarians to contact and seek advice. Please remember to describe the exact condition (diseased organ) and pay close attention to the feeding and ration recommendations!

You are welcome to request an analysis of the feeding of your animal via the contact email address

It is important to get the current weight of the animal, the disease (the diseased organ) as well as the feed components (name of the feed and/or the individual feed components in daily fed grams) listed. Then, an exact analysis can be made for the specific case of disease.

No generalised treatment

The suggested reduction of carbohydrate intake in case of illness in many publications can even be a harmful hint for your animal, at least for certain clinical conditions. Since the organ affected by the tumour or secondary disease is dependent on the support of easily metabolized food (e.g. liver disease), the important advice remains to use a food that is targeted at the affected organ system or to switch your animal to it.
We ask you to refrain from feeding raw meat to tumour diseased animals, as the immune system of the patient should not be weakened additionally by pathogens contained in the feed and therefore a balanced diet is especially important in this phase of the disease.

Kölle et al (2015) have commented very extensively on the so-called BARF diet in a recent article. However, this article does not deal with the special situation of the tumour diseased animal, but clearly deals with the undersupply problem of a BARF diet.

Supporting nutritional components

The addition of so-called radical catchers has proven successful in the nutrition of animals suffering from tumours. These antioxidants fulfil important tasks in the body's own defence, but also, for example, in aging processes and in tumour control. Therefore, they should be added to the diet. In order to be able to provide the immune system with an optimal supply, various trace elements such as zinc, selenium, copper and manganese should be added to the diet. For animals, for example, Basic from Almapharm is introduced as a feed additive mixture to add various necessary antioxidants and trace elements to the diet in a pleasant way. You can also obtain Basic from your veterinarian.
Furthermore we can recommend the product Immunactiv Balance from the company Vetfood. This food supplement has been specially developed for dogs and cats suffering from tumours.

Intestinal health - an important component in tumour treatment

Actually, it is commonly known: Bowel health is an important component of the overall health of the body. Often tumour patients suffer from disturbances of the intestinal activity, so that the better and natural regulation of the digestive processes is very important.
Basically, changes in digestive activity and eating behaviour on the one hand can be part of the clinical picture on the other hand can be the result of tumour treatment (chemotherapy).
Sivan et. al. (2015) stated that intestinal health is an important stabilising factor for the immune system and overall health, especially in tumour-infected animals. In their study, bifidobacteria were responsible for a better reaction to the treatment of tumour diseases and for a better tolerability of the therapy. This product class, called probiotics, has a very positive effect on intestinal health. An example product is the Intestivet Gel which you can buy online or from your veterinarian.
A new formulation of probiotics for dogs and cats is Intestivet. This product can also be obtained from your veterinarian or FeedMyAnimal.

Use radical catcher

Please note that it may also be useful to use radical catchers for your patient. These are antioxidants that neutralize and break down free radicals released in the body. Free radicals are released, for example, after radiation or tumour suergery and irradiations; the use of these preparations stimulates the immune system and accelerates regeneration.
A preparation specially developed for veterinary medicine is Astoral Basic from the company Almapharm. It is available in 100 and 250 g packages. You can also contact your veterinarian for this preparation. In addition, you can also use the Vetfood Immunactiv to strengthen the immune system of your animal.
All products mentioned here are suitable for permanent use and should therefore also be used.

Literature: Kölle P, Schmidt M (2015) BARF (Biologically species-appropriate raw feeding) as a diet for dogs, Tierärztl Prax; 43 (K) 409-419 Sivan A et al. (2015) Commensal Bifidobacterium promotes antitumoral immunity and facilitates anti-PD-L1 efficacy, Science 27 Nov 2015: Vol. 350 no 6264 pp. 1084-1089

Product overview

alfavet ReConvales Tonic for cats 45 ml
Supplementary feed for cats to stimulate food intake and support recovery

Astoral Basic from Almapharm
Supplementary feed for dogs and cats to strengthen the immune system.

Immunactiv balance capsules for strengthening the immune system of vetfood
Often given for oncological diseases.

Intestivet Gel 15ml for dogs, cats and pets from Vetfood
Feed supplement for dogs, cats and pets with intestinal problems and to improve the gastrointestinal tract.

Cannabidiol tincture for dogs and cats as an aid to the recovery by ecuphar
Supplementary feed for dogs and cats to support the recovery phase


Boscortin from Inuvet is now available. This preparation combines incense with omega-3 fatty acids and for the first time in veterinary medicine offers a proven product with good bioavailability. This greatly simplifies the use of incense for affected animals. You can get this product directly from your veterinarian.