Almost everyday, we see the images dog food manufacturers broadcasted through TV, newspaper and magazine advertisements extolling the virtues of buying their brands of dog food. Some dog food companies want us to believe their dog food brands can provide all the nutrition our companion will ever need. That is the fiction concocted by many commercial dog food companies and nothing can be further from the truth!
In fact, we may be feeding our dogs contaminated dog food, loaded with slaughterhouse waste, toxic materials, junk fillers, preservatives, additives, heavy metals , pesticides, herbicides and other harmful chemicals. Just look at the frequent high number of dog food recalls. And guess what, your pet dog is not getting the necessary healthy animal fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates and fibre it needs to live longer.
The U.S pet food industry is a $15 billion a year business and the top pet food manufacturers are owned by multinational companies. Some of these companies spend millions on advertising campaigns every year and for good reasons. Pet food provides a good dumping ground for their waste products, which are unfit for human consumption, to be turned into profits. Some also contains dangerous chemical preservatives and meat by-products that may include decayed meat or even the remains of companion pet animals!
While we expect whole chickens, choice cuts of beef, fresh grains, what we get in the dog food we buy may have been substituted with chicken heads, feet, and intestines. Those choice cuts of beef are really cow brains, tongues, esophagi, fetal tissue dangerously high in hormones, and possibly diseased.
Although the ideal solution would be for our dogs to be fed only wholesome homemade dog food, vegetarian or organic dog food, this is not a viable option for everyone – the cost and time commitment is sometimes too prohibitive. Therefore, if you really have to buy commercial dog food due to certain constraints, the next best option for you is to get the best dog food available, without the most harmful ingredients.
So how do we pick the better commercial dog food? The answer lies in the labels. Pet food companies are required by law to list the ingredients in the order of the amounts they contain. The next time you shop for your dog food, if you see any of these 7 sinful ingredients on the label which are most harmful to our dogs, put down the bag and run the other way:
1. Cheap filler ingredients like corn, soy or animal by-products listed in the top 5 ingredients or even further down the ingredient list;
2. Meat by-products or by-product meals – may contain slaughtered animal parts not considered fit for human consumption;
3. Meat meal, meat and bone meal – Meal is fine but not meat meal as animals that have died from all sorts of disease, trauma, or natural causes often are the source. It is commonly known that 25-50% of meat meals are contaminated by Salmonella bacteria. This can legally include dead pets/animals from road kill or vet’s office.
4. Artificial preservatives and additives like Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA), Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT), Propyl Gallate, Propylene Glycol and Ethoxyquin – all chemical additives used as preservatives, Ethoxyquin is actually a pesticide that cannot be added to human food;
5. Corn and Wheat gluten meal – cheap waste product that provides incomplete, poor-quality proteins;
6. Animal and poultry fats – most often are rendered animal fat, restaurant grease or other oils deemed inedible for humans;
7. Trace minerals in the form of mineral oxides or sulphates.
Not all pet foods are created equal. The onus is on us as responsible dog owners to at the very least select the ones that have none of the 7 sinful dog food ingredients mentioned. A good rule-of-thumb is to select the dog food whereby all the ingredients are considered fit for human consumption.
Avoidance is better than cure. But prevention is even better. Start feeding your dog with a healthy, well-balanced diet such as home made dog food or holistic dog food. They are much better than commercial dog food. Your dog deserves better, and it is your responsibility to act now before it is too late. As the nutrition needs of individual dogs vary, it is best to speak with a holistic practitioner or herbalist, or consult an experienced veterinarian on what is best for your dog.
Written By Chris Taylor, All Rights Reserved.
The author, Chris Taylor, also affectionately known as “The Dogfather” to his friends, is a dog lover with more than 21 years of experience in dog nutrition and dog training. He is the owner of the “Dog Nanny’s E-Course Series – The Whole Truth About Dog Food”. His website Happy Dog Secrets is dedicated to helping and educating dog owners on our best friend’s unique needs so they can remain active, healthy and happy for a long, long time to come. You can instantly download a free copy of “Secrets To A Happy Dog – Ultimate Dog Nutrition Primer” by visiting http://www.happydogsecrets.com.