Monday, October 18, 2010

Learn what the ingredients in your pet food really mean?

    The key tool when trying to give your pets the best possible nutrition is not how much you spend or who recommends the product but rather how well you understand what the ingredients listed really mean.

   Animal Digest is the dry by product of rendered meat. It can also include intestines along with the waste inside.

  Bone meal is a mixture of crushed and coarsely ground bones which around the world is mostly used as fertilizer.

Animal by products can be anything from the hooves, brains, lungs, beaks, intestines, and body parts of diseased animals.

   Animal fat really means fat from rendered animals and rancid restaurant grease.  How do companies get this fat? They churn the animal body parts and then boil the remains what rises to the top is what is later used as fat content and sprayed on the final product to add a smell to it that will make your companion eat the food. 

   The chemical preservatives give the pet food an incredibly long shelf life.  The list often includes BHA, BHT, propyl gallate, propylene glycol and  ethoxquin.  Propylene glycol is also found in automotive anti-freeze and many of the other chemical preservatives have been suspected to be potential cancer agents. The companies claim that some of these preservatives are also found in human foods but can you consider the consequences of being exposed to possible cancer causing chemicals in your food every single day like our companions animals are?

    The pet food commercials would have you believe that meat or some sort of meat product are the primary source of nutrition in your pets food and that items listed highest on the ingredient list are the primary and most abundant ingredient.  However due to such loose regulations of the pet food industries companies have found ways to get around this notion. 

  The true most abundant and primary ingredient in pet food is low quality often moldy and of low nutritional value corn products.

    Corn meal, gluten, and grits, all which are cheap allergy causing fillers which are difficult to digest. 
Ground whole grain sorghum has the feed value of grain similar to corn and is used primarily to feed livestock.

The grain used is usually deemed unfit for human consumption because of mold and contaminants. Pet food companies split the type of corn product so that it appears several times in the ingredient list and not as the primary most abundant ingredient.  This then leads consumers to believe that meat is the primary product used.  Our pets are carnivorous, why is grain which they can't properly digest the most abundant ingredient in their food? 

   Beet pulp is also found on the list and it is a filler that also helps contribute to the sugar content of the food. 

Most of the current ingredients in major brand pet food even those in their "premium" lines are not serving their purpose of providing appropriate nutrition for our beloved animals.  What is worse is that it may be very well hurting our animals.

      The food which is compressed in its solid dry form expands when in the stomachs of our pets and further expands when they drink water.  In large breeds this leads to bloat and flipped stomachs which then lead to a painful death where veterinary intervention often can't help.   The food also sticks to their intestines and over a period of time lead to painful blockages and cancers.  The hormones in the animal by products survive the rendering process add on the chemicals that the pet industry adds on to pet food and this gets absorbed by your pet everyday leading large breeds to grow at a disproportionate rate leading to muscle and hip problems.

    So as always you are who your pets depends on, they cannot read labels and pick for themselves healthy food but you can.  Saving a couple of bucks now may seem like a good idea, all the choices may seem the same but this will lead to huge veterinary bills in the future and a lot of heart ache when your pet can't live to its full potential .  And do not be fooled a higher price tag does not always mean more quality.  Go ahead and learn for your self pick up your pet food bag and read the ingredients now that you know what they mean you know what they are really putting in your pets food and in your pets bowl. 

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