From the Veterinary Practice News Publication
Supplement Joins Fight Against CDS
By Dennis Arp
It starts with the unexpected. Perhaps an incident of house soiling that’s totally out of character. Or a lack of response when a dog is called by name. Maybe some aimless wandering, a new phobia, or dazed and anxious looks when entering a familiar place.
These are symptoms of cognitive dysfunction syndrome (CDS), a condition of aging that some veterinary practitioners say deserves increased attention in pets, especially now that new tools for treatment are emerging.
The latest option is Neutricks, a chewable dietary supplement designed to protect brain cells and combat cognitive decline in pets.
Released in November as the first product from Quincy Animal Health of Madison, Wis., Neutricks uses the same technology as Prevagen, which was developed by Quincy Bioscience and has been shown to help people suffering from age-related congitive decline.
At the heart of Neutricks is the patented protein apoaequorin, first discovered in 1962 in a species of jellyfish. The idea is that as aging pets stop producing calcium-binding proteins and start to lose brain function, the apoaequorin in Neutricks acts as a replacement protein.
So far, clinical and lab testing have yielded positive results.
A project commissioned by Quincy and conducted by the research firm CanCog Technologies Inc. found statistically significant improvement in cognitive function by senior dogs in a controlled study.
In the study, 24 beagles 9 years or older were placed in three cognitively equivalent groups. They received either a placebo tablet or two different doses of apoaequorin. The subjects were tested using standardized cognitive methods for dogs, including object discrimination, visual search task and a visuospatial working memory task.
Data from the double-blinded placebo testing “suggest that daily administration of apoaequorin has beneficial effects seen in improved learning, accuracy and attention,” lead researcher Bill Milgram, Ph.D., reported in November in a Quincy news release.
“All of the animals tested in the study were aged and showed some degree of cognitive impairment. Thus, one possible interpretation is that the treatment has the potential of reversing age-associated cognitive dysfunction.”
Gary Landsberg, BSc, DVM, Dipl. ACVB, Dipl. ECVBM-CA, is a veterinary behaviorist in private practice who is also director of scientific affairs for CanCog. He’s eager to begin adding Neutricks to the mix of prescription medications and supplements used by patients with age-related cognitive decline.
“I’m delighted as a practitioner that we now have one more product that has been shown to be effective against this disease,” said Dr. Landsberg, whose practice is North Toronto Animal Clinic in Thornhill, Ontario.
“Because this product has a somewhat different mode of action, it will complement those already out there.”
Neutricks has been used since late summer on senior patients of Sarah Kalstrup, DVM, at Westside Family Pet Clinic in Madison, Wis. As a test practice, Westside received trial samples, and Dr. Kalstrup said 10 animals with CDS symptoms have been involved in the study.
Kalstrup said the owners of eight of the 10 dogs that began taking Neutricks reported improvement in at least one of the cognitive symptoms. One dog, a 14-year-old black Lab named Guinness, experienced even more stout success.
Before the study period, Guinness started acting like anyone but himself. He was waking three or four times a night, pacing and panting as well as barking repeatedly. His restlessness and confusion disrupted the entire household.
“The owners were beside themselves,” Kalstrup said. “They were saying things like, ‘We can’t go on.’ ”
After the first week on Neutricks, the owners reported profound changes, the doctor said. Guinness was sleeping better and was more alert during the day. He also was more eager to seek attention. No side effects were reported.
When the 30-day trial period ended, the owners had one more question: Where can we get more?
“We were all amazed,” Kalstrup related.
At Westside, an AAHA-accredited small-animal practice, Guinness is among a growing number of senior patients seen by the clinic’s six doctors, including Ken Lambrecht, DVM, founding owner and clinical medical director.
Kalstrup said that even with awareness of CDS, signs can easily be missed. And connecting those symptoms to the disease is an inexact process. From 20 percent to as many as 75 percent of senior dogs show signs of age-related cognitive dysfunction, Landsberg said, with symptoms typically starting at age 9 or 10.
Because the disease is progressive, early diagnosis is critical, he said, noting that veterinarians often have to ask specific questions about senior pet behaviors to get the information needed for a diagnosis.
Quincy provided a check list that Kalstrup found instructive.
“Owners won’t necessarily volunteer information until it’s too late to do something about it,” Landsberg said. “Now we have a number of products that have been tested in an evidence-based way or against a control group, so there’s no reason not to ask the questions.”
The doctors agree that it’s important to perform baseline lab work and other tests to explore the possibility that other medical conditions might be causing the symptoms. Considerations include tumors, organ disease and pain from osteoarthritis or other sources.
Neutricks is available only through licensed veterinarians because Quincy believes the supplement “represents an opportunity to create veterinary-client dialogue about these geriatric symptoms that pet owners may overlook,” said David J. Merrick, general manager of Quincy Animal Health.
“I’m not foolish enough to say Neutricks will work every time,” Merrick added. “But we’re confident it will give pet owners a really good chance for success against age-related cognitive dysfunction.”
This Education Series story was unwritten by Quincy Animal Health of Madison, Wis.
Active Ingredient: (per 2g soft chews) apoaequorin ... 5 mg
Worked just fine for my 17 y.o. by Airsailor from Bucjarest, Romania01/16/2014
I cannot praise the product, but for my 17 y.o.caniche/cocker mix worked just fine.
I had a gap of 5-6 days due to delayed delivery when she was out of them and the symptoms came back rushing (spinning, day/night switch). As soon I got her back on the stuff, it went back to significantly diminished symptoms.
Definitely did not work 100% to bring her back to her old self, but t least i get the feeling she's more calm with it.
I am trying now to mix the Neurotricks treatement with 1/day Senilife.
Keep my fingers crossed and hopes up.
Neutricks by Jodyp05/30/2012
Have been using it for a while now and have not noticed any difference in Holly. I tried it on the advice of my vet to hopefully, help her cognition, memory... So far, nothing has changed.
Worked for our 14 year old Aussie! by tulllys3 from North Carolina03/23/2013
I've seen reports from people that indicate the Neutricks didn't help their dog but it made a big difference with our dog. He was almost back to his normal self after about 3 dosages. Your website sells the Neutricks for about 50% of the cost our vet sells it for. Thank you!
Wonderful supplement by Cate02/27/2013
A wonderful natural product that help my senior dog immensely. After two doses he started sleeping through the night with out barking and wandering, which he had not done in over five months.
Great product. by BirdDog from Madison, WI10/31/2011
We got our dog into a trial for Neutricks (13 year old at the time). After the first month, we did not see much improvement in her, but we certainly did during the second month of treatment. She has been on Neutricks since.
Neutrick works by clear from Monroe, Ohio11/04/2011
We got Neutricks for our dog with Canine cognitive disorder (dimentia type) she is nine years old and her behavior was drastically changing. She was snubbing my husband and turning her head to ignore him, hide from him and clinging to me. She even knocked over furniture to get to a hiding spot. Generally she was walking in & out of rooms confused & not remembering why she was there (get water) or just looking perplexed. Now she is not as confused or as often perplexed (decrease 50%). Plus we have not had one piece of furniture knocked over & the incidents are decrease to ocassionally not weekly. It is a little pricey but the vet had us go with a full dose then decrease a little after showing signs of improvement (2 pills to 1 1/2 pills daily). I do feel this has offered her a better quality of life and has decreased my worry for her also.
Have a 12 year old mix with notable staring off into space and listening skill decrease.
Since Neutrick's her staring off into space has greatly decreased and she listens when we call her.
Neutricks by Jasper03/19/2012
We have a very elderly dog (over 16 yrs) with dementia issues. A friend heard about "Neutricks" on NPR, so we thought we would give it a try. We really think it has made a difference in slowing the progression of our dog's mental decline....only wish we had known about it sooner and started it at the first signs. I refer to "Neutricks" as the "Aricept" for dogs!
Neutricks by Fancy Pants01/04/2014
Our vet recommended Neutricks July 8, 2013, when we discovered our 15-year-old canine friend had an inoperable and non-treatable tumor. Along with some other medicine and diet changes, I am more than pleased to report he is still with us, and just returned from a 10-day Florida vacation. His level of alertness is astounding.
Good product by lindalee11/09/2011
I have a very old dog and these pills really brought him back to reality. He is doing very well on these pills.
Noticeable change in my 16.8 year old Lucy by windsheen from Minneapolis, MN08/19/2013
We have gone through about half the bottle and Lucy is doing so much better. She even barked the other day and she has not done that for over a year. Lucy runs in the yard when I get home and is looking at me again. She still paces at night but not as much as before. I do mix them in her food otherwise she most likely would not eat it. Neautricks has made a world of difference!
Great Product by me from Columbus, Ohio02/21/2014
Keeps my doggies fit and they really do nt have any trouble taking it.
More than hoped for with Neutricks by Lab Lover from Grosse Pointe, Michigan06/16/2012
Our Vet., Dr. Brooks, gave us hope of restoring our thirteen year old Labs vitality and mental alertness with your product "Neutricks".
After taking Neutricks for only three weeks both dogs were more alert, active, and the sparkle returned to their eyes.
After more than a year on Neutricks there is no doubt of the joyful restoration these dogs have experienced, and we certainly revel in their joy.
Thank you So much for making our dogs old years golden. Neutricks is the real deal!
Neutricks by Deidre from Lake Ronkonkoma05/26/2013
I believe this product is helping my dogs cognition. I definitely saw an improvement in her once she was on it just a couple of weeks.
Neutricks - good product by Connie from SD05/05/2012
Our beagle loves the taste of neutricks and we feel has made him more youthful.
it really helps by clear from Monroe Ohio01/27/2012
Used this on my 9.5 yr old aussie/husky who had Canine Cognitive Disorder basically doggie dimentia she would pace, act "lost" or confused in our house become frightened be a simple sneeze frightened wnough to hide behind the couch knockiing over tables. This product stopped all of this behavior within 3 weeks by following the directions. We have had no furniture knocked over at all so by 6 weeks vet reccommended we try to cut back on the dosage within 2 weeks some symptoms started coming back so follow the dosage directions. After 16 weeks we are still good. Some random "lost" looks but that is it! Definately would reccomend for their health and happiness and your peace of mind. I did not realize how much the CCD bothered me until she was not exhibiting the odd behavior.
my dog refuses these by doggymom07/14/2012
A lot of money for a product my dog completely rejects.
Seems to Help by Misty from Houston, TX08/29/2014
Second purchase of this product - this time for almost half of what I paid in a retail health store. My dog is 16, has dementia and assorted other issues, but still eats well and wants our company. The Neutricks seems to help her focus a little more and increase her awareness of her surroundings, at least part of the time. I use only half of the recommended weight dosage as she weighs only 10 pounds.
neutricks seems to work by collie lover from Madison WI01/08/2011
We had our 13 yr old collie participate in the trials for Neutricks. After two months, she was noticeably more active. Our family noticed the change too. My grandmother thinks she should be taking these pills.
I was sceptical, but this has been great! by Chow Mom from Berkshires MA04/25/2012
I have an 11 year old chow who recently has been getting disoriented - sometimes he seems to forget where he is and he was waking up in a panting panic throughout the night. I had tried Anipryl with a former dog and it worked well but when I went to my vet she told me to try this - in just a few days I saw a huge difference and it has now been a month and he is doing great - sleeping through the night (with the help of nightlights) and not being so panicked during the day. Also - paid $61 from my vet for this so EP is a bargain (as always) I really was not expecting this to work but would absolutely recommend it!
by Dr A06/08/2012
Our dog doesn't care for the taste of this, so we crush a tab and mix it in his food and he will eat it that way. He is 16 yrs old and it has helped him quite a bit with his cognitive function. He seems more alert and doesn't sleep so soundly all day.
Didn't work well for us by Apollo from Pacific Northwest01/29/2014
This may help some dogs, but it didn't help us. I tried it with my 12 year old dog for about 2 1/2 months. After about 2 months he seemed to have gotten worse in his cognitive functions.
So I stopped giving it to him and we're switching to a different supplement.
I think this is worth a try if your pet has cognitive issues. It won't hurt. For us, it didn't help.