A Finicky Dog’s Guide to Actually Eating by Chiclet T. Dog

Written by Jan on August 6, 2013 – 12:01 pm

sugar doggyIs your dog a delicate creature like myself, possessed of an ultra-discriminating palate? Does she seek perfection in every morsel, but find all too often that even perfection isn’t good enough? Is she fickle like moi, loving chicken one day and hating it another?

Fortunately, my Mom convinces me to eat enough to sustain life, and even build health.  Here are some of her general tips, followed by some of her patented tricks:

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Tags: dog food, dog won't eat, feeding, finicky dog, new dog food, picky dog, picky eater, small dog
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Genetically-modified Ingredients in Pet Food By Dr. Michael W. Fox

Written by Jan on October 24, 2012 – 10:49 am



By Dr. Michael W. Fox

The metaphor of the proverbial canary down the mine shaft alerting miners to the presence of poisonous gas is eminently applicable in this modern day to our animal companions alerting us to hazards in our shared home environments when they become ill. One of the long overlooked external environmental factors that affect the health of our cats and dogs as well as our own is the food we and they consume. Manufactured pet foods are not something separate from what we consume and provide for the rest of our families. What we and they eat comes from the same agribusiness food chain!

In my review of the risks of GMOs, (genetically modified food ingredients), present in most manufactured pet foods that are not Organically certified and which contain corn, soy, canola, sugar beet or imported rice, I give a unique perspective as a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist. It is through this column, which I have been writing for over 40 years, and the thousands of letters received from pet owners concerned about their dogs’ and cats’ illnesses which conventional veterinary treatments were not always effectively resolving, that I was able to track changes in the kinds of illnesses seen in companion animals that coincide with and parallel the introduction of increasing amounts of GMOs in their diets. Read more »

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The AVMA’s War Against Raw Diets for Pets

Written by Jan on July 26, 2012 – 6:18 pm

Jean Hofve, DVM

Jean Hofve, DVM, former Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association, has written a must-read post concerning a proposed AVMA resolution opposing raw diets for pets to be voted on by the AVMA on August 3, 2012.  She refutes the arguments put forth by the AVMA and tells you everything you ever wanted to know about the safety of raw feeding.  Whether you are for or against raw feeding, or just on the fence, you’ll want to read this article. It was originally posted on her wonderful Little Big Cat website — which is not just for cats.  

Permission granted by Dr. Hofve to cross post.

8/8/12 update: Here’s the AVMA’s decision. It’s very disappointing. It’s more important now than ever to read this great article.   Read more »

Tags: AVMA against raw food, cat, dog, feeding raw, prey diet, raw food
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Dog and Cat Food Labels: Marketing Tricks That Cost You Money

Written by Jan on March 24, 2009 – 10:11 am

My good friend Dr. Jean Hofve, veterinarian and former Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the American Holistic Veterinary Organization, has kindly allowed me to post a great article she wrote on how marketing can obscure the truth about what’s in your dog or cat food. I think you’ll really enjoy this article and her website LittleBigCat.


A trip down the pet food aisle these days will boggle the mind with all the wonderful claims made by manufacturers for their particular products. But what’s the truth behind all this marvelous hype? You might be very surprised…let’s take a look.

1. Niche claims. Today, if you have an indoor cat, a canine athlete, a Persian, a Bloodhound, or a pet with a tender tummy or itchy feet, you can find a food “designed” just for your pet’s personal needs. Niche marketing has arrived in a big way in the pet food industry. People like to feel special, and a product with specific appeal is bound to sell better than a general product like “puppy food.” But the reality is that there are only two nutritional standards against which all pet foods are measured (adult and growth/gestation/lactation)—everything else is marketing.

2. “Natural” or “Organic” claims. The definition of “natural” adopted by AAFCO is very broad, and allows for artificially processed ingredients that most of us would consider very unnatural indeed. The term “organic,” on the other hand, has a very strict legal definition. However, some companies are adept at evading the intent of these rules. The name of the company or product may be intentionally misleading. For instance, some companies use terms like “Nature” or “Natural” in the brand name, whether or not their products fit the definition of natural.

3. Ingredient quality claims. A lot of pet foods claim they contain “human grade” ingredients. This is a completely meaningless term Read more »

Tags: cat, cat food, cats, dog, dog food, dogs, food labels, good cat food, good dog food, label terms, marketing, Nutrition, pet food, reading labels, what's really in pet food
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Farmed Salmon in Pet Food: Is It Safe?

Written by Jan on February 20, 2009 – 2:00 am

Salmon in the Wild

Salmon in the Wild

Many of us who are careful about our diets have real concerns about eating farmed salmon and other farmed (aka “ocean-raised”) fish.  We want the Omega-3 fatty acids from the fish oils — for ourselves and for our pets — but wonder if we are trading lower prices for contamination.  This is especially important for pets, most of whom eat the same food every meal, every day. If there’s fish in their food (and it’s sometimes there without our realizing), it’s especially important that it’s safe.

But is wild-caught fish really all that better?  The prices should tell you something. In a store near me, you pay $6.99 per pound for farmed; $16.99 for wild (when you can get it); and $15 or more for farmed fish fed organically. Given these prices, you can bet that Fifi and Fido aren’t getting organic or wild-caught.

The health dangers from farmed fish comes from the contamination of their fat with harmful chemicals called PCB’s (polychlorinated biphenyls).  An article called PCBs – Is Farmed Salmon safe to eat?reports: “The manufacture of PCBs was banned in the U.S. in 1979 because of evidence they build up in the environment and can cause harmful health effects. However, PCBs persist in the environment. Fish absorb PCBs from contaminated sediments and from their food.” Read more »

Tags: cat, dog, dog food, dogs, farmed fish, farmed fish safe, farmed salmon, health, pet, pet food, safe, Safety, salmon
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