Saturday, February 25, 2012
Do you know what is actually in your animal companion's food?
Please read this article by Celeste Yardnall in the link below.
This is a topic that has been close to my heart since the early 90's when my education about what actually IS in commercial pet food began. At that time there was not very much information about more natural and healthy alternatives for our animal companions. Most of us just blindly did what our veterinarians told us to do and bought what the TV commercials so brilliantly fed us. But what really is in the food that comes out of a bag or a can? Do you know? Do you want to know? If you care even a little bit about your precious animal companion you MUST learn and then make an informed decision about what you place in their bowl or plate. Our animal companions depend on us for their food, nourishment and over all health and wellbeing.
If you choose to educate yourself about this very interesting topic, do not beat yourself up as I did, once you learn the truth. Remember that we each do the best that we can in the moment. I would never feed any animal what I fed back in the 80’ or early 90’s but at that time I thought I was doing the very best for my beloved animal friend. Who knows, maybe 10 years from now I might look back and think, “how could I possibly have done that or fed that to my fur baby?” We do the best that we can in the moment and we hopefully continue to learn and remain open to new information.
My education began with a holistic magazine by the name of Tiger Tribe and two books; The Natural Cat by Anitra Frazier and Natural Health for Dogs and Cats by Dr. Richard Pitcairn.
The reason I began seeking an alternative to what we were doing at that time was the fact that our kitty Cleo was so ill at the end of her life and the week before she made her transition she was diagnosed with cancer. She was put on antibiotics for several years. It was horrible and I vowed that I would learn and educate myself so that no future animal companion of mine would have to suffer like Cleo did. Little did I know what a journey this one little step would begin for me. My whole life changed. Cleo started me on a mission to learn and educate myself that turned into a life’s mission of work with animals and the humans that love them. My car’s license plate says 4CLEO because everything that I do is for and because of Cleo. (But I digress)
Back in the early to mid 90’s there was not much information about the topic of holistic animal companion health and nutrition, other than mail order from a hand full of sources (the Internet was not what it is today). You could not buy healthier, prepared pet food anywhere. Now, thankfully, there are lots of holistic pet stores springing up in many areas that carry prepared food that is more healthy, from frozen raw to healthier canned and even healthier dry. Of course there are vast resources on the Internet where you can have the food shipped directly to your house.
What is in the commercial canned and kibble pet food that is produced by the big pet food companies? You will never know unless you learn what each ingredient listed actually is. I suggest that you make a list of the really “bad” ingredients and go read labels when you go shopping for pet food. Here is a short list to get you going: By-products, meat-and-bone meal, BHT & BHA, sodium benzoate. This should get you going. I will give you details as to what each of these “ingredients” are in then next post on this topic.
The bottom line is, the healthiest food that you can give your own animal companion is something that you make yourself. Raw meat, bones and veggies are the best for your animal companion followed by lightly cooked food. One must also make sure that the proper vitamins and minerals are added to the food for a true balanced diet. You must also make sure you know your source as best as you can for the meat as well as vegetables. Organic is best but even meat that is not organic is a million times better than what is in the "big pet food" companies. If you feel that you don’t have time to prepare food for your animal companion you should seek the healthiest canned food.
Educate yourself about what is actually in the product that you are feeding your animal companion. It will make all the difference in the world to their health and well being not only now but also in the future.