Bisphenol A (BPA) in the serum of pet dogs following short-term consumption of canned dog food and potential health consequences of exposure to BPA

Sci Total Environ. 2017 Feb 1;579:1804-1814. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.11.162. Epub 2016 Dec 6.


Bisphenol A (BPA) is a widely present endocrine disruptor chemical found in many household items. Moreover, this chemical can bioaccumulate in various terrestrial and aquatic sources; thereby ensuring continual exposure of animals and humans. For most species, including humans, diet is considered the primary route of exposure. However, there has been little investigation whether commercial-brands of dog foods contain BPA and potential health ramifications of BPA-dietary exposure in dogs. We sought to determine BPA content within dog food, whether short-term consumption of these diets increases serum concentrations of BPA, and potential health consequences, as assessed by potential hematological, serum chemistry, cortisol, DNA methylation, and gut microbiome changes, in dogs associated with short-term dietary exposure to BPA. Fourteen healthy privately-owned dogs were used in this study. Blood and fecal samples were collected prior to dogs being placed for two-weeks on one of two diets (with one considered to be BPA-free), and blood and fecal samples were collected again. Serum/plasma samples were analyzed for chemistry and hematology profiles, cortisol concentrations, 5-methylcytosine in lymphocytes, and total BPA concentrations. Fecal samples were used for microbiome assessments. Both diets contained BPA, and after two-weeks of being on either diet, dogs had a significant increase in circulating BPA concentrations (pre-samples=0.7±0.15ng/mL, post-samples=2.2±0.15ng/mL, p<0.0001). Elevated BPA concentrations positively correlated with increased plasma bicarbonate concentrations and associated with fecal microbiome alterations. Short-term feeding of canned dog food increased circulating BPA concentrations in dogs comparable to amounts detected in humans, and greater BPA concentrations were associated with serum chemistry and microbiome changes. Dogs, who share our internal and external environments with us, are likely excellent indicators of potential human health concerns to BPA and other environmental chemicals. These findings may also have relevance to aquatic and terrestrial wildlife.

Keywords: Commercial diets; Endocrine disruptors; Microbiome; Pets; Serum chemistry.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Benzhydryl Compounds / blood*
  • Benzhydryl Compounds / toxicity
  • Dietary Exposure / analysis*
  • Dogs / blood
  • Endocrine Disruptors / analysis
  • Endocrine Disruptors / blood*
  • Endocrine Disruptors / toxicity
  • Food Contamination / analysis*
  • Food Contamination / statistics & numerical data
  • Food, Preserved / analysis*
  • Pets / blood
  • Phenols / blood*
  • Phenols / toxicity


  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Endocrine Disruptors
  • Phenols
  • bisphenol A