Pet food spending surpassed $32 billion this year, but not all major players in the market are feeling victorious….https://www.americanveterinarian.com/news/food-for-thought-the-changing-landscape-of-the-pet-food-industry (December 18, 2018)
I made a trip to Petsmart today, because my Internet “autoship” order of premium-brand dog food will not arrive for three days, Walking around Petsmart, I felt like that former Soviet emigre friend in the 1980s, certain that the mind-blowing number of brands and products in the supermarket had to be faked. Normally when I have gone to the big box store, I have my mind on one particular brand and flavor of dry dog food. In military precision, I get in, get it, and then got out. Today however, I was looking for some cans of wet food to carry Dexter and Comet through until the internet order arrives. Can you imagine that old Soviet, bug-eyed seeing separate sections in a store, with four or five premium brands per side of each aisle? Some, marketed in refrigerated cabinets as “RAW”. Or vegan, or grain-free, and some seem similar to the packaged heat and serve packages I took along on camping trips!
How we have changed in the last several decades. My mother never seemed as concerned about our pets’ dietary needs. Our childhood pets were fed Purina dog chow and table scraps and gravy drippings sometimes for extra flavor. Most of them lived very healthily into their late teens. Of course, forty years ago, people were a lot healthier also. Kids and their dogs ran around. They played all day and into the evening. Everyone got lots of exercise. Healthy home-cooked meals were the norm rather than take-out or delivery. And for the dogs? Purina, with some gravy or table scraps for added flavor. With changing times though, what can a responsible pet person do to feed her furry family?
A consumer advocate group reached out to me last month discussing dog nutrition, and the latest reports from the American FDA (Food and Drug Administration) reviewing the link between a heart-health problem (DCM) in certain dogs and a high-protein, grain-free diet. Knowing that humans themselves do not well-understand the link between certain foods, additives, and cancers, allergies, and the like, I thought it would be valuable to share with the readers of this blog. If you recall, it was not too very long ago, that American consumers learned that quality-control issues in China had resulted in many dogs in the USA and Canada, I believe, being poisoned by dog chow. It would be irresponsible not to look deeper into the various claims of premium dog food brands to see whether they truly put ethics and health of their clients’ pets above profits.
I welcome old friends as well as new friends offering me their insight in the area of pet nutrition. And please visit the consumersadvocate.org for their research in other topics as well.