Friday, May 27, 2011

Our Dogs' Food: The Big Decision

by Carrie Boyko, CEB

© Carrie Boyko 2007
Clearly This Was the Right Decision!

Our Senior, our Adult, and Our Puppy
all Loving their Chow


Every family has to set their food and health priorities, both for themselves and for their pets. Visit any pet products store you choose and you're sure to find out that there are dozens and dozens of brands to choose from. 


Even after you ask your veterinarian about food, you may still find yourself wondering, "What's best for my dog?"  The experts say it all comes down to balancing healthy sources of protein, fats, fruits, vegetables and fiber. For my family, there is the added criteria of leaving the synthetic toxins behind.

Conventional Pet Food
As I've discussed recently, conventionally produced food ingredient sources have a dirty little secret:  Produce, including meats, vegetables, fruits, and even dairy, are laced with invisible layers of toxins from pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, antibiotics, and even growth hormones. It's these unlisted, invisible ingredients that we have chosen to avoid. 

Natural Pet Food
Your next best choice will be a natural dog food. The term 'natural' has been tossed around quite loosely. You can look it up in Wikipedia and you'll find that even these definition experts have thrown up their hands and said, "Who knows?" However, its intention is to indicate that food is minimally processed and has no synthetic ingredients added.  

Organic Pet Food
Moving on to the organically certified foods, you'll find there are 2 grades. The USDA's National Organic Program  has two levels of organic labeling. Third party certification is overseen by the USDA, and certified by a small number of highly regulated organizations. Their certifications provide confirmation of 70-94% organic ingredients in a product with their labeling. Our dog food company calls this "Natural Plus".

The next level of organic certification is, as you may have guessed, the most difficult to achieve. The USDA Organic label, earned directly from the USDA, is your sign that a product is guaranteed to be 95-100% organic. Sounds great! Let's all run out and find USDA Organic dog food...right?

Sorry to say, it's not that easy. Pet food manufacturers making USDA Organic pet food have come and gone. The stiff criteria makes this cream-of-the-crop level a hard task to accomplish over the long term.

When I went shopping for brands that I could purchase locally with good availability, I learned very quickly that changing brands regularly would likely be inherent in the decision. That wasn't part of my plan, so we chose to go with a brand of dry food that offers third party organic certification, has a U.S. production facility, and is widely available. In addition, this company's track record impressed me, along with the fact that their canned dog food was available with the USDA organic label. 

No, I don't use canned food on a daily basis. But my dogs certainly do enjoy the treats I make with it, and it's quite handy for delivering medication via meatballs. I'll be sharing some of my Fidos' favorite recipes with you, so hang in there until after I announce the Big Reveal and the product giveaway announcement—tomorrow!


HINT: If you don't want to miss a single opportunity like a terrific dog food giveaway, be sure to grab your FREE subscription to All Things Dog Blog in the dog house on our sidebar. 


Did you miss the first two installments of this series?

Full disclosure: All Things Dog Blog has not been compensated to provide the upcoming dog food review.  We have not been paid to provide our opinion of this product, and the opinion provided is our own.

6 comments:



Michelle said...

Thought that THIS was going to be "the big reveal".... Technically, it IS Friday! :-)



Carrie, with Tanner and Oliver said...

Michelle: The Big Reveal is Saturday...along with other excitement. Hope to see you tomorrow.



Richa said...

oooh.. i am wiaitng for the big reveal!
As for the tanner and oliver picture.. they have exchanged their bow collars!:)

-Chewie and Richa @ Find me a Happy Pet ,
Chewie on Facebook



Monika said...

Just browsing some of the blog hop blogs and I wanted to say hi! I will follow you as well. We also have a Facebook fan page at http://www.facebook.com/aiasdotca that you should check out! We always like and follow back, just leave us a note <3

Monika @ Aias Dot Ca
Blog: http://www.aias.ca
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/aiasdotca
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/aiasdotca



amber01sw said...

I found you on the Hoppin Weekend, I am your newest GFC follower. If you could check out my blog and follow me back I would appreciate it. Thanks Amber
http://dragonflysweetnest.blogspot.com/



cajunlicious said...

Hi! Following you from the hoppin weekend blog hop! I Hope you visit my Cajun blog and return the follow!
- Jessica @ http://cajunlicious.com

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