My Recommended Natural Pet Food List

The pet food recall last year was scary for all of us pet owners. Afterward, I educated myself on pet nutrition and what should and should not be in our pet’s food. My dog Abby suffered from severe skin allergies at the time, and was requiring more and more Prednisone to keep her itching under control. Ear infections were also a recurrent problem for her, and antibiotics were no longer giving her relief. From all that I read about a pet’s nutritional needs, I suspected the problem was with her food, a well known expensive commercial pet food which I found contained suspect ingredients such as chemicals, preservatives, and by-products.

I decided to change her diet to an all natural kibble, supplemented with raw food and the results were amazing. It has now been over a year since I made the change, and she has not needed her allergy medication or antibiotics for her ears since July of 2007. I was so disgusted with the commercial pet food industry, and impressed with what a change in diet can do that I started a blog last year to share what I had experienced with Abby.

I have now compiled a list of my recommended pet foods which will be permanently maintained on my blog “The Cat/Dog Log,” for all pet owners to reference. There are many great pet foods on the market, so I need your help to make the list as complete as possible. If you use a pet food that fits the criteria below and you don’t see it listed, please leave a comment on my blog at http://blog.ourdoglog.com with the product name so I can add it. Some companies make several products; for example their canned product may fit the criteria while their dry kibble may not. So please be specific when listing your pet food.

Recommended Natural Pet Foods:
Barf World Raw patties;
Blue Buffalo Co;
Evangers;
From Family;
Halo Purely for Pets;
Holistic Blend;
Merrick;
Natura: Evo, Innova and Karma;
Natura: California Natural canned only: Lamb/Chicken & Br.Rice/Herring & Sw.Potato;
Nature’s Variety – Instinct – canned;
Newmans Own Organics Premium;
Solid Gold: Hund-N-Flocken, Katz-N-Flocken, Millenia, Wolf King;
The Honest Kitchen -dehydrated raw;
Wellness by Old Mother Hubbard

Criteria for the list:

* First ingredient must be a specified meat such as “chicken” (not “chicken meal”-
it’s fine if “chicken meal” (example) is the 2nd or 3rd ingredient.
* No by-products
* No corn as it’s hard to digest and one of the prime causes of allergies in pets
* Fat should be specified, such as “chicken fat,” not just “animal fat”
* Preservatives should be natural and not chemical, for instance Vitamin E

On the subject of “chicken meal,” according to Wikipedia, the quality of the protein from “chicken meal” as an example depends on the type and amount of meat in the mixture, and although it’s better than “chicken by-products,” it’s generally a lesser quality protein source than “chicken meat.” Chicken meal is only the meat from the chicken, whereas chicken by-products can be all parts of the bird, including beaks, feathers, feet, intestines, etc.

On the subject of “fat,” if the product doesn’t specify the animal from which the fat was taken, and is labeled simply “animal fat,” the contributing animal is not known, and the resulting oil is very low in linoleic acid which is essential for skin and coat health.

The pet foods that list meat as the first ingredient tend to be the most expensive, and I know that we can’t all afford the top of the line pet foods. There are many other good pet foods out there where the first ingredient is for example “chicken meal,” but my goal here was to list the very best pet foods. One trick I use is to mix a top brand with a less expensive yet all natural brand to help keep the cost down and make it go further, yet my pets still get the benefit of the high-end food. I also feed raw food for one meal a day to assure they are getting the best quality high protein diet I can give them. For premium content and convenience, nothing beats BARF World frozen raw food patties. For less expense but very convenient, try The Honest Kitchen’s dehydrated raw mix and just add water. You might also consider making your own raw food mixture, and I have detailed information on my blog on how to do this. I know it takes a bit more time, but it can be done cheaply and raw food is the best food by far for your dog or cat.

The Perils of Commercial Pet Food

My first cat, Venus, obtained when I was young and naive, started out on a commercial pet food diet supplemented with lots of fresh meat and fish, eggs and cheese, and 15 years later, as an old dame, she was still very partial to her ‘crunchies’. So I sourced the best possible dry cat food on the market for her. A Canadian brand, promoted by leading Holistic Veterinarians worldwide, made from lots of high quality ingredients and preserved using only natural compounds like Vitamin C. Honestly, the ingredients’ list read like a gourmet degustation menu, including yummy things like real chicken and salmon, chicken livers and chicken fat, eggs, turkey, whitefish, alfalfa, kelp, pumpkin, and many other fresh whole fruits, vegetables and herbs.

Unfortunately Australian quarantine laws required that the food be irradiated on entry into the country. Some human foods like herbs and tropical fruits are irradiated on import, but many imported pet foods receive huge doses of radiation — around 5-10x the human dose! The irradiation process altered Venus’s pet food in such a way that it became extremely toxic to cats. A number of Australian cats eating the food developed irreversible neurological disease and had to be euthanased. A pet food recall ensued.

At the time about 40% of Venus’s diet consisted of the gourmet dry food. Consequently, she was one of the cats affected with irreversible neurological disease. She lost a lot of weight, developed wobbly hind legs, was having trouble swallowing her food, and couldn’t urinate or defaecate properly. She even started to have trouble breathing. She did not respond to treatment and I had to euthanase her.

I am now even more passionate about the benefits of preparing a balanced, natural, homemade diet for pets. I have since done even more research into commercial pet foods, and have discovered only a very small number that I recommend to my veterinary patients, but it stands proven that real, home-prepared food is undoubtedly the better option.

Many Vets recommend feeding ‘premium’ processed dry foods over home-prepared diets, and tout these as the best option for your pet, but I learnt first-hand that this is far from the truth. Many of the commercial pet foods readily available, even ‘premium’ labels, can be extremely detrimental to your pet’s health.

Although creatively marketed as the optimum food for your pet, this is far from the truth. In the time since commercial pet foods have become available, we have witnessed a dramatic decline in the health of our pets. There are many contributing factors that have led to the demise of health of our animal companions, including poor genetics, inappropriate lifestyle, and over-vaccination, but diet is, without doubt, one of the major ones. Skin disease and dermatitis, allergies, ear infections, teeth and gum disease, poor digestive function, pancreatitis, obesity, diabetes, arthritis, renal failure, anal gland blockages, epilepsy and cancer are now rampant amongst the pet population, and can all be linked to improper nutrition. It is no coincidence that diseases such as these have become more prevalent since processed pet foods became available.

If you want your pet to be as healthy as possible, a balanced, natural, real-food diet is crucial. My pets now eat a very easy-to-prepare diet, rich in yummy, health-promoting ingredients, like raw chicken necks or wings for the cat, or whole raw chicken carcasses for the dog, raw lamb bones, raw organ meats (beef, lamb or chicken liver, hearts and kidneys), raw fish, tinned sardines or mackerel, raw eggs, plain yoghurt, and a little cottage cheese or cream here and there. It’s also important to provide daily greens, so I mince up home-grown parsley or sprouts or wheatgrass, as well as whatever vegetables I have on hand, like broccoli, carrot, celery, beetroot, cauliflower, sweet potato or pumpkin and the occasional piece of fruit like apple, pear or pineapple. I supply important minerals with seaweeds like kelp powder or nori flakes. All of the foods provided are human-grade, and organic where possible.

Providing a natural diet for my pets, despite my busy lifestyle, has proven to be easy, quick, inexpensive and rewarding. I am now confident that my pets are receiving a natural, nourishing diet that promotes their health and vitality, rather than depleting it.

The Perils of Commercial Pet Food

My first cat, Venus, obtained when I was young and naive, started out on a commercial pet food diet supplemented with lots of fresh meat and fish, eggs and cheese, and 15 years later, as an old dame, she was still very partial to her ‘crunchies’. So I sourced the best possible dry cat food on the market for her. A Canadian brand, promoted by leading Holistic Veterinarians worldwide, made from lots of high quality ingredients and preserved using only natural compounds like Vitamin C. Honestly, the ingredients’ list read like a gourmet degustation menu, including yummy things like real chicken and salmon, chicken livers and chicken fat, eggs, turkey, whitefish, alfalfa, kelp, pumpkin, and many other fresh whole fruits, vegetables and herbs.

Unfortunately Australian quarantine laws required that the food be irradiated on entry into the country. Some human foods like herbs and tropical fruits are irradiated on import, but many imported pet foods receive huge doses of radiation — around 5-10x the human dose! The irradiation process altered Venus’s pet food in such a way that it became extremely toxic to cats. A number of Australian cats eating the food developed irreversible neurological disease and had to be euthanased. A pet food recall ensued.

At the time about 40% of Venus’s diet consisted of the gourmet dry food. Consequently, she was one of the cats affected with irreversible neurological disease. She lost a lot of weight, developed wobbly hind legs, was having trouble swallowing her food, and couldn’t urinate or defaecate properly. She even started to have trouble breathing. She did not respond to treatment and I had to euthanase her.

I am now even more passionate about the benefits of preparing a balanced, natural, homemade diet for pets. I have since done even more research into commercial pet foods, and have discovered only a very small number that I recommend to my veterinary patients, but it stands proven that real, home-prepared food is undoubtedly the better option.

Many Vets recommend feeding ‘premium’ processed dry foods over home-prepared diets, and tout these as the best option for your pet, but I learnt first-hand that this is far from the truth. Many of the commercial pet foods readily available, even ‘premium’ labels, can be extremely detrimental to your pet’s health.

Although creatively marketed as the optimum food for your pet, this is far from the truth. In the time since commercial pet foods have become available, we have witnessed a dramatic decline in the health of our pets. There are many contributing factors that have led to the demise of health of our animal companions, including poor genetics, inappropriate lifestyle, and over-vaccination, but diet is, without doubt, one of the major ones. Skin disease and dermatitis, allergies, ear infections, teeth and gum disease, poor digestive function, pancreatitis, obesity, diabetes, arthritis, renal failure, anal gland blockages, epilepsy and cancer are now rampant amongst the pet population, and can all be linked to improper nutrition. It is no coincidence that diseases such as these have become more prevalent since processed pet foods became available.

If you want your pet to be as healthy as possible, a balanced, natural, real-food diet is crucial. My pets now eat a very easy-to-prepare diet, rich in yummy, health-promoting ingredients, like raw chicken necks or wings for the cat, or whole raw chicken carcasses for the dog, raw lamb bones, raw organ meats (beef, lamb or chicken liver, hearts and kidneys), raw fish, tinned sardines or mackerel, raw eggs, plain yoghurt, and a little cottage cheese or cream here and there. It’s also important to provide daily greens, so I mince up home-grown parsley or sprouts or wheatgrass, as well as whatever vegetables I have on hand, like broccoli, carrot, celery, beetroot, cauliflower, sweet potato or pumpkin and the occasional piece of fruit like apple, pear or pineapple. I supply important minerals with seaweeds like kelp powder or nori flakes. All of the foods provided are human-grade, and organic where possible.

Providing a natural diet for my pets, despite my busy lifestyle, has proven to be easy, quick, inexpensive and rewarding. I am now confident that my pets are receiving a natural, nourishing diet that promotes their health and vitality, rather than depleting it.

Best Rated Dog Food?

Best rated dog food? Learn the danger of commercial pet food and why you should rather make your own dog food.

I’m sure every dog owner wants only the best for their pets. We all love and cherish our dogs and would never dream of harming them. The truth is we are all feeding them poison in the form of commercial pet food. We are slowly but surely killing the very pets love and protect.

Ever wondered why some dogs life spans are so short, or why some get so sick and diseased?

You wouldn’t believe what’s in the commercial dog food products we buy. Many of us trust the dog food suppliers and generally buy on price. We have no idea what the actual ingredients are inside the packets or containers.

The truth is absolutely disturbing. The so called balanced nutritious meals we buy are loaded with all sorts of bad chemicals, preservatives and dangerous ingredients.

Did you know some dog food is made from road kill animals and euthanized strays of various animals?

In LA, nearly 25% of the processed dog food comes from the above road kill and euthanized animals, can you believe it!

This makes me sick to think that we feed our animals with diseased dead animal parts.

They use Sodium Pentobarbital, which is used to euthanize the animals. This chemical is still present in the carcases when they make the dog food, and stays in the food. The dosage is but is still present in the food. Dog manufactures also use Ethoxyguin (EQ) in their dog food to preserve the food. The commercial dog food is full of chemicals and preservatives which would never pass for human consumption. Does this still sound nutritional?

This makes sense when you think about all the common problems dogs have, which are similar to symptoms humans have when poisoned.

Common dog problems include the following.

  • Kidney and bladder cancer
  • Stomach cancer
  • Major organ failure
  • Birth defects
  • Blindness
  • Chronic Diarrhea
  • Hair loss

If you want you dogs and puppies to live longer, happier and healthier, then you need to start making your own dog food. If you follow special recipes and health plans, your pets can live nearly twice as long if you are prepared to do this.

They are really easy to make and there are simple methods of making home made dog food quickly. The easiest way is to make dog food in bulk and to freeze it. I do this and it saves me money and gives me piece of mind knowing that I’m not poisoning my dogs. They get all the protein, vitamins, minerals and all nutrition they need, without the dangerous chemicals and preservatives.

Advice For Avoiding Bad Pet Food

The immune system’s strength, in people as well as animals, is affected by the quality of nutrition. A dog’s behavior, happiness, health, longevity and overall well-being are a direct result of the nutrition offered in the daily diet. Each dog has special nutritional needs that vary from animal to animal.

There are several easily noticeable symptoms of nutritionally caused deficiencies: allergies, hot spots, lack of energy, joint problems, arthritis and poor behavior. Nutritional balance is the key to a healthy pet and not giving the dog bad pet food will help with the inflammation of arthritis and other major health problems.

Quality Of Good and Bad Pet Foods

Poor quality pet foods are common in grocery stores and pet supply stores. The low price tag may be tempting and seem like a bargain for what is often advertised as a “premium” product, but the items really contained in your pet’s food may be surprising.

Dogs need meat and protein, being carnivores, and they also need carbohydrates, vitamins, fat, minerals, and water. Essentially, they need all six of the basic types of nutrients. Manufacturers of pet food have the choice of the types and amounts of proteins, minerals, and vitamins that they put into their products. Chicken, lamb, and beef, which contain higher amounts of protein, are needed by active dogs. Plants or grains such as corn, soy, wheat, and rice have enough protein for less active dogs. Most dog food is made with ingredients that are edible by humans, such as rice, chicken, liver, vegetables, etc, which is not bad pet food.

Dogs have specific nutritional needs, but most pet owners do not realize that all dogs and most good or bad pet foods are not alike. Many commercial dog food brands are lacking in key nutrients, which are edible for humans, and even other species of animals, can pose hazards for dogs because of their different metabolism. Some may cause only mild digestive upsets, whereas, others can cause severe illness, and even death.

However, there are a few common food items that are bad pet foods to give to dogs. Chocolate, for instance, is very toxic to both dogs and cats. Baking chocolate contains more toxins than milk chocolate does, but both forms are potentially lethal. Two or three squares of baking chocolate could prove fatal to a smaller dog. Tea and coffee are likewise toxic, as they contain the same chemicals. Warning signs of food poisoning in dogs are excitement, nervousness, muscle spasms, seizures, and increased body temperature. Veterinary treatment is recommended as soon as possible.