The Animal Doctor by Dr. Michael W. Fox

Electropollution and Electrosensitivity

DEAR DR. FOX: I want to thank you for writing about electropollution.

I wrote to you a few years back about my distress from hearing a humming noise all the time. It drove me crazy and sometimes seemed to upset my dog. I called the power company, thinking it must have been something in the wiring. They checked my home, and reported finding nothing unusual.

Then I went on the internet and found other people complaining about the hum, and feeling more tense and experiencing prickling sensations all over. So I felt less crazy, but still had no answer until reading your column about electropollution. -- J.P., Miami, Florida

DEAR J.P.: I am sorry that I was not able to help you until now with finding a reason for your auditory distress, most likely from cellphone towers near you.

Many people who are electrosensitive suffer from tinnitus, headaches, loss of concentration and even loss of memory. Wireless technology may connect us in one way, but it is disconnecting and harming us -- and other life on this planet -- in many other detrimental ways, about which we are just beginning to learn. We are learning from electrosensitive individuals like you, as well as from insect species (especially bees) and birds, which are disappearing from one community to the next as wireless technology spreads into our homes, hospitals, schools and workplaces.

I may sound like an alarmist, but I am only sounding this alarm after having read many scientific studies of the harmful consequences of nonionizing radiation and electromagnetic fields generated by wireless technologies. I will post more factual information in a future column, and have posted a provisional review about electropollution on my website (

DEAR DR. FOX: I read your article all the time for some great suggestions for my rescues.

My 12-year-old, 25-pound, part-Chinese-crested rescue was diagnosed with pancreatitis. The ultrasound shows that he has had this for a while, and just recently had an acute attack. He was on fluids for three days. My dog has always had a very sensitive stomach and takes famotidine twice a day. He also has had anxiety issues. At one time, we were going to a specialist.

I have cooked for him for 11 years, and he also eats about 5 ounces of Hill’s Prescription i/d Low Fat dry food daily. His blood work has always come out looking good. He is in very good shape.

They now want me to feed him Hill’s Prescription i/d Low Fat canned food, in addition to the dry. His prior diet consisted of chicken (which I now boil), sweet potatoes (mashed without skin) and crushed peas. The specialist said I could give him some low-fat cottage cheese and sprinkle just a bit of no-salt-added chicken broth.

I am not introducing rice, oatmeal or turkey yet. I’m trying to limit his food types. I was told to almost eliminate fat and sugar from his diet. My question to you is: Can I continue with the cooked food, and secondly give him canned and dry food? I have never been a believer in dog food.

Also, before his attack, he ate bully sticks. In time, do you think he could have those again? He had surgery three years ago for dry eye, and besides loving the bully sticks, they really help wet his eyes. We also give him omega-3 supplements for his joints, a probiotic and a chewable B vitamin for anxiety. I was told that we can resume these in a few weeks. -- J.Q., Lake Worth, Florida

DEAR J.Q.: Bully sticks always have some risk of salmonella, and the risk is worse with pigs’ ears. Chicken can be very fatty, even when boiled, and tends to be inflammatory; ditto dry dog kibble.

I would transition to boiled turkey meat, which can have a calming effect from the tryptophan. I would add some fiber -- such as organic oatmeal, amaranth or quinoa -- about a tablespoon per serving, plus a teaspoon of grated carrots or blueberries. Give him three or four small meals daily. Good-quality probiotics, which should be found in refrigerated storage in the store, can also help with digestive and pancreatic problems, so double-check the probiotics you are giving to your dog. (Incidentally, those containing Bifidobacterium longum NCC3001 can help reduce anxiety in humans.)

Before bedtime, give your dog 3 to 6 milligrams of melatonin and 50 milligrams L-theanine. The latter has a calming effect, and melatonin also acts as a beneficial antioxidant.

Check out my review “Dog Food and Feeding Issues” on my website, This is relevant to feeding some complex carbohydrates to dogs.

(Send all mail to or to Dr. Michael Fox in care of Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106. The volume of mail received prohibits personal replies, but questions and comments of general interest will be discussed in future columns.

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