Don’t be misled into thinking the cheapest food you buy is going to be the least expensive. There are multiple considerations in figuring the true cost of raising dogs beside what you pay for a container of dog food. Let’s start with pet food ingredients. Like ingredients in any product, their cost is in direct proportion to their value. Value in animal foods is based on the nutritive component or biochemical assimilation and digestibility factor of each ingredient, which are priced accordingly. The higher the value, the higher the cost. Additional considerations which affect the true cost of raising dogs and cats are additives, supplements, hygiene, cleanup, litter size, body condition and veterinary care. The only formula that matters and won’t deceive you is:
Total cost per day per dog = “TRUE COST.”
Let’s take a look at the pet food industry where four distinct categories of captive companion animal foods are offered. These are numbered from the most widely used and seemingly inexpensive to the least used and seemingly most expensive -but “are they?”
The predominant ingredients are always plant matter; usually corn, soy, wheat, barley, rice with some cooked meat meals. These are the rations, along with table scraps and junk food treats, that cause many of the nutritionally deficient maladies of today’s captive pets. These conditions include weight problems, skin and coat problems, digestive problems, large stool volume, odor problems and urinary problems just to name a few.
The predominant ingredients are usually cooked meat meals such as meat and bone meal, chicken by-product meal, fish meal along with plant matter such as corn and soybean meal, etc. These rations, though somewhat more digestible, are still lacking many of the natural nutrients that were once there, due to the extreme temperatures reached during their cooking processes. Yes, processes, the meat meals are cooked twice, relieving them of many nutrients long before they reach the animal’s digestive juices.
The predominant ingredients are very similar to the premium rations with varying formulas to treat specific ailments usually caused by either of the first two rations. These rations are cooked, some ingredients double cooked and often fall short of their intended goal.
Preserved by freezing or freeze drying. The predominant ingredients are fresh muscle meat and organs which include tripe, liver, lungs, hearts, kidneys, spleens and other organ meats which are the first choice of non-captive carnivores in the wild. Small amounts of plant matter are added to balance amino acids, calorie requirements and add fiber for stool formation. Yes, carnivores do eat small amounts of plant matter from the stomachs of their prey which they generally consume entirely. Fresh meat diets are brought to your captive canines and felines frozen for one reason — to preserve the nutritional integrity of the oldest ration on earth, by avoiding nutrient damage done by cooking. This ration has been served by Mother Nature very successfully to non-captive carnivores for thousands of years — fresh (uncooked) meat.
Your favorite captive carnivore will enjoy while experiencing “The Magic of Frozen Raw Meat“. This can translate to fewer trips to a health care clinic and a most pleasurable way to raise happy, healthy, long living, captive meat eating companions at ~truly reasonable cost –all things considered!
posted by Rob Mueller