The contamination of mass-produced pet foods is a fairly hot topic in the media right now. It's not that it's a new topic, but it's certainly an ongoing one--as more and more pet food brands are found to be contaminated and as the sordid conspiracy continues to unravel.
I want to say right off the bat that I think this whole thing is tragic--partially because of all the beloved pets that have gotten sick or died, and partially because the whole thing could (and should) have been avoided.
As I see it, there are two issues at hand: what we're feeding our pets and where we're getting their food.
I don't know about you, but I've never met a dog or a cat that was a vegetarian. Try doing a taste test with your pets. Put two bowls in front of them--one of fresh, raw veggies and one of fresh, raw meat. I guarantee you they wouldn't even think twice about which one to go for. It's not just that the meat tastes better (which it does), but that the animals instinctively know which is better for them. Too bad most humans don't have the same instincts.
Still, the kibble industry is bent on turning our naturally meat-eating pets into vegetarians. It's no secret that pet food is primarily made of vegetables and soy. But meat or no meat, when it comes right down to it, these products are not healthy for your dog or cat because they're cooked. Your pet needs raw meat and raw fat including (especially) raw chicken liver or rabbit liver.
Hasn't anyone noticed that what were once only human diseases-- heart disease, kidney disease, diabetes, arthritis, and cancer, for example--have suddenly turned into pet diseases as well? Could the culprit be the food they're being force-fed? You bet.
But that's just part of the story. Turns out this forced vegetarianism is also the root cause of the contamination of mass-produced pet food.
Exposing the fraud of the pet food industry
Manufacturers know that the protein content of their pet food is vitally important. They also know that it's not easy to get protein into the pseudo food lining the store aisles (which isn't any wonder, since it doesn't contain meat!). And in the game of pet food ingredient suppliers, the one with the most protein wins.
Enter wheat gluten.
Typically, manufacturers add wheat gluten (glutamine) to pet food to boost the protein content of the food. That's bad enough in and of itself, but it gets worse. Most of the wheat gluten comes from overseas sources--such as Communist China--where farming standards don't even come close to the regulations enforced here in the States.
But I have a question for you: Since the U.S. is one of the leading wheat producers in the world, why would American companies import wheat gluten from someplace like China? I'm sure you guessed: It's cheaper to buy a slave-labor product from China than it is to buy something locally.
But there's always a price to pay. Although it hasn't been proven, it seems fairly certain that the gluten sent to us from China was contaminated with a substance called melamine.
Melamine is a toxic chemical that's used as a fertilizer, among other things. Not in the States, mind you. It's been banned here. But it's alive and well beyond our not-so-protected borders--and liberally spread over countless crops, including the wheat that's used in pet food.
You know I'm a conspiracy theorist. To me, this story has foul play written all over it. I don't think it's too much of a stretch to suggest that the wheat gluten extracted from wheat grown overseas could have had melamine added directly to it--as opposed to simply being used as a fertilizer on the crops. Why would anyone intentionally add it to the wheat gluten used for pet food? The answer: because it boosts the protein levels in the product.
No, melamine isn't high in protein, but it is high in nitrogen. In case you're wondering what the two have to do with each other, I'll tell you: Nitrogen levels generally correspond with protein levels. Adding melamine boosts the appearance of the protein levels--enough to give a manufacturer the edge over its competition.
Just some food for thought. (I wouldn't eat it, though)
Regardless of how it got there (whether it was intentional, or an accidental result of using a poisonous fertilizer), wouldn't it just be safer--and better for our economy--to stick with food grown on American soil? But like I said before, all of this could have been avoided if pet owners had been content to feed their pets a raw food diet.
I'm very interested in seeing how this whole thing pans out. I'll be sure to keep you posted.
One more thought: If melamine is poisonous in Kansas, why isn't it poisonous in Kumning? Was none of the contaminated product sold in China? Probably not, since the Chinese eat cats and dogs
FDA watchdogs caught with one (and a half) eyes shut
Does all of this make you start to wonder what's in your food? Or what poisonous substances have been added to boost the appearance of nutrition? It should. I looked into it, and what I found out should be enough to make you sell your house, move to the country, and raise all of your own food. I admit that sounds extreme, but as the saying goes, desperate times call for desperate measures.
What "desperate times" am I referring to? How about the fact that the FDA only tests 1 percent of the food and raw ingredients that cross our borders. Or what if I put it this way: 99 percent of the food that comes into this country slips completely under the radar.
It screams of double standards to place such strict regulation on the farmers in this country--so much so that it drives the cost of home-grown products sky-high--but to welcome with wide open arms the food grown on foreign soil, where standards often don't even come close to ours. It's no wonder that those products are cheaper, and it's no surprise that American manufacturers are only interested in the bottom line.
I'm sure this whole thing will blow over soon enough. When the dust settles, though, we'll still be left with the same cooked, vegetarian junk dog food that we had to begin with (minus the melamine, I hope). May as well make the switch now to feeding your pets raw animal fat and raw meat.
The best doggie diet around
Forget about the vegetarian kibble industry. The best diet I can recommend for you to feed your dog is called the B.A.R.F. diet. B.A.R.F. is an acronym for "Biologically Appropriate Raw Food." To read more about this diet and to locate B.A.R.F. distribuotrs, go online to www.barfworld.com.
Do the right thing by your pets. They'll thank you for it!
For those of you who are especially interested in this topic, there's a lot more information where this came from. For more on the criminality of the pet food industry, read the Feb 04 and the March 04 issues of The Douglass Report. And for more about the recent pet food contamination, you should read my three-part series that appeared in the Daily Doses back in May. All of these articles are available on my website.
I suppose now is as good a time as any for some shameless self-promotion. If you haven't already signed up for my FREE weekly e-letter--why not? It's easy to just go to the website, enter your e-mail address, and voila! You'll start getting my comments on all the latest news bites several times a week. And don't worry. If you get tired of hearing from me, you can always unsubscribe. What's there to lose?