|Latest News From BARF World|
The Beginning of the End for Raw Pet Food?By Amber Keiper
It has been reported all over the World Wide Web that the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) is proposing to put through a policy discouraging pet owners from feeding their dogs and cats a raw food diet. So the question is, who is the AVMA and why are they so against us feeding our pets raw food?
Read on, intelligent pet parent, as we uncover truth. . .
Who is the AVMA?
The AVMA is a non-profit association that represents veterinarians working in private and corporate practice, government, industry, academia, and uniformed services. The AVMA “acts as a collective voice for its membership and profession. ”
Their funding comes from their charity foundation, the American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMF). For details on who their major donors are, see “Just The Facts” section below.
What is the proposed policy about?
The proposed policy that the AVMA is planning to vote in states:
“The AVMA discourages the feeding to cats and dogs of any animal-source protein that has not first been subjected to a process to eliminate pathogens because of the risk of illness to cats and dogs as well as humans. . . To mitigate public health risks associated with feeding inadequately treated animal-source protein to cats and dogs, the AVMA recommends the following:
(Click Here to read the full document. )
According to the AVMA, their concern is that raw, uncooked animal protein diets may possibly pose risks of infection with Salmonella, Campylobacter, Clostridium, E. coli, Listeria monocytogenes, and enterotoxigenic Staphylococcus aureus. They go on to say that these infections can sicken pets as well as people and recommend that foods be treated with high levels of heat or irradiated to destroy any pathogens.
How safe is raw meat for dogs?
The reality is, our pets are designed by nature to thrive on raw, uncooked foods. Their bodies can handle the normal levels of bacteria found in raw diets and rely on the live enzymes from raw foods for proper digestion and utilization of nutrients.
By feeding our pets heat-processed or irradiated pet foods, we put unnecessary stress on their digestive and immune systems. Over time, this stressful environment puts our dogs and cats in jeopardy of nutrient deficiencies and a compromised immune system, which can cause various health problems such as allergies, digestive problems, musculoskeletal issues and even cancer.
Pet owners that may be skeptical about the safety of raw pet food should take into consideration that all pet foods - whether raw or cooked - have the possibility of spreading infection. Take for example the recent salmonella outbreaks from May 2012 where 12 separate dry and canned pet food manufacturers had to recall thousands of pounds of pet food because of Salmonella contamination.
As you can see, raw pet food isn't the only one that carries the risk of illness. Nevertheless, it always seems to be the scapegoat in these situations.
Why is this policy causing such uproar among raw diet advocates?
While the AVMA does not have any direct regulatory power, they are seen as an authority on veterinary care and therefore could have some clout with state and federal policymakers.
The fear is that the AVMA's actions are the beginning of a larger-scaled attack on raw pet food.
There are also some veterinarians that are worried that the passage of this policy will cause them to be ousted if they continue to recommend raw food diets to their clients.
How Can I Help?
American Veterinary Medical Association
1931 North Meacham Road, Suite 100
Schaumburg, IL 60173-4360
3. Spread the word to your fellow pro-raw friends and family!
Please forward this article and repost on Facebook, Twitter and other social networking outlets. It's time for us to stand up and fight for our right to feed raw!
Amber Keiper is the Marketing Assistant and Raw Diet Educator for BARF World Inc. . She and her husband have two former rescue animals that are now healthy and proud "BARF brats" - a terrier mix named Chewbacca ("Chewy") and a tabby mix named Chiquita ("Chiqui"). For more articles like these and to learn more about the benefits of raw food for your pets, sign up for The Intelligent Pet monthly e-zine at www.barfworld.com.
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Here are some responses from last week's article on “Pit Bulls Get The Wrong End Of The Stick”:
“I'm a fairly new subscriber, but love the articles and news info you guys provide!
Friends of mine adopted a pit bull a few years ago. They weren't sure about her temperament or how she would react to strangers. They asked a male friend of theirs to "break" into their home to see the dogs' reaction (not the best idea, I'll admit). To their surprise and joy, the dog brought the fake intruder a toy of hers.
When I first met her, I made the mistake of sitting in her favorite chair. This fearsome black brindled pit bull proceeded to jump on my lap and lick my face clean. Truly dangerous! ;)
There are no bad dogs, but sadly there are plenty of bad owners. Thank you for loving all pets, the same way I love mine! I have 2 dogs and 3 cats, they all love their raw diet!”
-Brianne Vander Neut, loyal TIP ezine reader
“I cannot thank you enough for bringing attention to Pit Bull discrimination in your article entitled "Pit Bulls Get the Wrong End of the Stick". I could not agree with you more! I am the owner of an 80 lb. blue nosed Pit Bull named Maggie. Maggie is a rescue. When my fiance and I decided to rescue Maggie, she was a six month old, painfully frail waif of a thing, riddled with obvious infections to both her skin and ears. We feared (and still suspect) that Maggie was a former bait dog and victim in dog fighting. Despite my reservations (as I too had fed into the pit bull stereotype) it was my fiance, who first saw Maggie and fell in love.
Despite the obvious abuse that she has endured, Maggie is by far one of the sweetest dogs that I have ever encountered. She is incredibly smart, obedient and a true clown! She truly is an inspiration, not only in our household, but to all abused Pit bulls worldwide. I cannot tell you the amount of times we walk Maggie and are asked if we fight her. It's horrifying! I even have a collection of business cards at home in which people have handed to us in regard to Maggie.
During our many animated discussions regarding Pit Bulls, my fiance and I share the same view in blaming the owners. Due to their incredible strength, in the wrong hands, pit bulls are almost used as weapons and are abused and trained as such. However, with tender loving care, they respond in kind, and make the best of friends. . .ours is a shining example! We cannot imagine our lives without her.
I am and will forever remain a huge fan of these dogs and try to pay it forward by consistently donating to the ASPCA and introducing Maggie to everyone. Even those who originally fear her fall in love.
Below is a link - Maggie was featured in a Prospect Park blog as the Greenmarket dog of the day:
Thank you again, from both Maggie and myself!”
-Nadia Nelson from Brooklyn, NY
“You hit the nail right on the head. There are PLENTY of examples of these fabulous dogs doing great things. I personally fostered several, fell in love with one, adopted her, and then adopted another male later.
My male is awesome enough to be a therapy dog. He's calm, sweet, loving, funny, and smart. He'd never hurt his 2 legged sister and brother, both in the single digits in terms of age. My female is super sweet, though a little high-strung and paranoid, but still, even when frightened she's never snappy. The PB's I've fostered have just been WONDERFUL. Look at the Vick dogs. Most have rehabbed quite well despite what they've went through.
Yes, there are bad PB's but there are also bad dogs in other breeds. My grandmother just had one of her Chihuahuas attack and kill another of her chi's. So any dog can be dangerous and most can be quite sweet given the proper care. ”
-Blog reader, Momtra
|Bark Out Loud|
Salmonella-Tainted Kibble Causes Illness in 49 People
"At least 49 people have fallen ill since October in a Salmonella Infantis outbreak linked to dog and cat food manufactured at a Diamond Pet Foods facility in Gaston, South Carolina, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in its final outbreak update. That case count has risen from 22 since the CDC's previous update on June 13. "
(Click Here for full article)
Wags of Wisdom:"It often happens that a man is more humanely related to a cat or dog than to any human being. "
- Henry David Thoreau
"Every boy who has a dog should also have a mother, so the dog can be fed regularly"