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Raw Myths & Fears Explained

By Katherine Cebrowski on January 04, 2018
Raw Myths & Fears Explained

It's time to dispel some of the many myths about raw feeding for dogs and cats. As raw diets become more popular, more information becomes available about them – but unfortunately, not all of this information is correct.

Misconceptions about raw diets are spread by fellow pet parents, pet food companies, and sometimes even veterinarians. We always encourage pet parents to research on their own and understand the source to reveal if there are any hidden adjendas, biased or just untrue. Let's begin...

Myth #1 - Feeding RAW meaty bones is dangerous.

TRUTH - There are many benefits to feeding RAW bones. It can strengthen a dog’s and a cat’s teeth; can fight gum disease; and can prevent tartar and plaque as well as bad breath. Our pet’s digestive system is able to easily break down raw bones.

Smoked or cooked bones are a different story. They are at risk for splintering and flaking and can perforate the digestive tract. This can lead to intestinal impaction, tooth breakage, and possible choking. NEVER FEED YOUR PET COOKED BONES. Anything else carrying the name “bone” by virtue of its shape is generally not to be served – chances are it is either made of grain, or chemically treated hides or synthetics (which should never be eaten).

This myth is largely a common sense issue. The fact is that it can be done safely, but you have to know what works for your pet. Will they gobble down big chunks of raw bone that could very well get stuck? Problems arise when pet owners offer the wrong type and size of a raw meaty bone to the wrong type or size of dog or cat. It's important to match the type of raw bone with your pet's size and chewing habits.

Feeding raw bones is benefical – you just need to know your pet and monitor accordingly. Not sure which Raw bone is appropriate for your pet? Reach out to the Furchild team. We are here to help.

Myth #2 - Raw meat contains harmful bacteria so there are risks to health such as toxoplasmosis, E.coli and salmonella?

TRUTH - Dogs and cats are not people.

They have a much shorter digestive tract than we do and they process the foods they eat very differently. While we humans can get very sick from eating raw meat, our pets remain unaffected because it is such an important part of their natural, ancestral diet. Our pets can digest foods much faster than humans do i.e. long before harmful bacteria is able to multiply and cause problems.

In addition carnivores have a very high level of acidity in their digestive tracts. This acidity, (which allows them to process the nutrients in raw meats and bones) is also hostile to bacteria. We’ve all seen pets eat rubbish like rotten foods and decaying carcasses etc without any ill effects. This is because carnivores have adapted to eating a diet that suits their particular biological makeup.

Handling and hygiene practice of your pet's raw meat should be like any other meat and your pet’s dishes and eating area should be thoroughly cleaned after each meal.

It is important to note that there have been hundreds, or even thousands of dog food recalls from the commercial producers of dry and canned dog food due to bacterial contamination, but not even one report of dogs or humans being harmed from the bacteria coming from raw food for dogs.

Furthermore, Furchild uses bacteriophages in the manufacturing of our pet meals. It is a safe, holistic and effective way to kill pathogenic (bad) bacteria without also killing beneficial bacteria that are sometimes present in foods or food processing environments. The three specific phages we use target salmonella, listeria, and E. coli and all of their harmful strains.

Myth #3 - Dogs and cats should not eat human food.

TRUTH - Our grandparents and great grandparents fed their pets with raw scraps.

Our grandparents and great grandparents fed their pets with raw scraps from their own meals because, at the time, there was no such thing as bagged kibble and canned pet food. However, pets should NEVER eat cooked bones from leftover meals from their human companions. Dogs and cats are carnivores and have the jaw structure to rip, tear and swallow prey animals, but they are not designed for cooked bones.

They do not have flat molars like humans meant for chewing things like grains and whole vegetables. In fact they have no need for a human-like diet, which is rich in carbohydrates and grains. Their digestive tracts are short and manufacture very harsh gastric juices meant to digest whole raw meat and bone and move it through their system very quickly.

So in reality, feeding your pet our raw food is not feeding them human food per se, but in fact, feeding them a species appropriate diet close to what they would get when eating a prey animal.

Myth #4 - RAW meat will make my dog wild and vicious.

TRUTH – Your dog will NOT become wild and more aggressive just because they consume a raw diet.

The truth is that the balanced nutritional content of raw food can only have positive effect on the dog’s cognitive functions. In fact, commercial dog food can contribute in the long term to the development of digestive problems and can affect brain chemistry, which in turn can lead to behavior problems. Since your dog is able to digest and pass raw food more easily than commercial pet food, they are better able to handle stress and be more responsive to commands.

You will notice with proper, high quality nutrition your pet will be more lively, especially if your dog is bloated and lethargic after meals.

Myth #5 - My vet is against RAW feeding.

TRUTH – According to many Vets the focus in their studies is not on nutrition but on how to ‘fix’ pets' health problems.

A conventional veterinary school does not focus on nutrition; it focuses on medicine. It is not unlike medical school for MDs in that way. That is why the study of nutrition often involves a completely separte field of study. Often veterinary training offers as little as one to a few weeks to nutrition study.

If everything that we needed to know about nutrition could be learned in a week, we’d all be healthier. The classes are also, more often than not, sponsored by one of the major veterinary food companies. Information being taught is sometimes taught with an agenda. One large company that manufactures a very popular kibble brand, spends hundreds of thousands of dollars a year funding university research and nutrition courses at every one of the 27 US veterinary colleges.

Once in practice, vets who sell these brands of processed pet foods and other 'premium' foods directly pocket profits of as much as 40%. Thankfully forward thinking vets do exist and there are those who do endorse a balanced raw diet. These vets have decided to do their own research and think outside the box. Thank you!

Learn more about the hidden truths of dry and canned pet foods at Comparing Types of Pet Foods

Myth #6 - I should only feed my dog or cat one type of protein.

TRUTH – Variety is the spice of life and the heart and soul of a good raw diet. Each protein has different vitamins, minerals, amino acids, etc. Limiting proteins without a sound knowledge of how to balance a meal can lead to long term nutritional deficiencies. If possible, we suggest on average feeding 4 different proteins per month for a good balance.

Myth #7 - Domesticated pets are different from wild dogs and cats so they cannot tolerate RAW food.

TRUTH – There is very little difference, if any, between a domesticated dog and cat’s digestive system and tht of a wild dog and wildcat. Think of your beloved pet as a trained wild dog or cat. Raw food diets have all the nutrients your pets need to remain physically fit, energized and disease-resistant. Learn more at Why Raw? The Ancestral Diet

Myth #8 - Dogs and cats have adapted to eating cooked food as a result of their long domestication.

TRUTH – There is a long list of disease and illness strongly associated with food cooked at high temperatures.

This is evidence to the fact that they have not adapted to cooked food. Skin diseases, periodontal disease, cancers, obesity, and diabetes have been found to be caused by commercially prepared processed foods. If dogs and cats have adapted, as pet food manufacturers would have us believe, then their bodies would have been more able to resist disease-causing substances in their food.

Did you know that the highly processed kibble food only came out in the market about 100 years ago? In evolutionary terms, that is just a microscopic measure compared to the thousand of years that it took dogs and cats to evolve to where they are today, starting from the wild where they first lived and survived. Dogs and cats certainly didn’t feed on kibbled or cooked foods before they were domesticated and started to live with humans. Learn more at Comparing Types of Pet Foods

Myth #9 - RAW diets are expensive and inconvenient.

TRUTH – Commercial processed pet food is indeed convenient in the short term, no doubt.

But they have also made it a convenient way to fill your dog and cat with toxic substances that can make them ill, reduce their quality of their life and possibly shorten their life span. If the pet that depends on you for survival and care is being fed commercial pet food for nutrition, you are letting your four-legged family member down. You don’t have to trade your own convenience by compromising your pet’s health

TRUTH – Furchild offers a perfect a solution. Our products and services combine convenience, simplicity and quality from a reliable and trusted source. Now there’s no excuse!

Myth #10 - Feeding RAW is unnecessary. There are plenty of high-quality commercial pet foods on the market today.

TRUTH – Even high-quality, premium, top brands of commerical kibble and canned pet foods are still processed.

The food has been cooked, stripped of its natural goodness, contains additives and fillers, artificial vitamins and minerals and other mystery ingredients. They are still pale beside fresh raw meat and bones. Your pet is still exposed to the dangers posed by artificial ingredients and nutrients. Any processing necessarily lessens the food’s quality and value. Processed pet food is not natural and therefore has no place in your dog or cat’s diet.

High-quality, premium, top brand – they all are saying that the product is supposedly better than feeding them cheaper alternatives. While the most expensive pet food can deliver on their promises, there are still other important issues to consider. Learn more at RAW vs KIBBLE & CANNED PET FOODS

If you find that you have more questions about feeding raw, read through our website pages; it's very informative. If you're considering switching your pet to Furchild meals, you can take advantage of our Special Introductory Offer for new customers.

Once you switch your pet to Furchild meals, you don't go back!

Written by...

Katherine Cebrowski
Katherine Cebrowski
Co-Founder and Owner - An accomplished event promoter, airline professional, vegetarian, yoga instructor and English Bulldog owner she works each day to bring out the best in people and their pets.
Katherine Cebrowski

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