As most of all the dog food diets out there are animal-based in some way, there is very little information in dogs showing the dangers of eating animal protein. Our research has come from the dangers of animal protein in humans as we do share the same mammalian organ systems. Sadly too not a lot has been spent on researching the dangers of eating intensively-farmed animal meat as it is such an enormously profitable industry – imagine no taxes coming in from all the large fast-food chains, restaurants and processed foods sold if everything turned plant-based which is why most governments give such huge subsidies to farmers to keep these animals intensively farmed and keep the profits coming in.
This is true too for the pet food market. It is such a huge money earner that big corporate income means more money to spend on very big advertising and make you the pet owner believe that their food is best for your pet or their flea drops are best for your pet with no thought on the environmental impact or health of your pet, only a priority on making a profit!
Hopefully these articles and our research will allow you to see that you are definitely making the right decision in turning your dog vegan as THERE ARE MANY DANGERS ASSOCIATED WITH FEEDING MEAT TO YOUR PET
The kidneys and livers process the waste products and toxins
Most of animal protein pet foods are made up of intensively farmed animal by-products ie all the bits of a cow or lamb, pig or chicken that we do not buy to eat as humans. This includes all the organs that are involved in getting rid of waste and toxins in an animal’s body such as the intestines, liver and kidneys. As the aim of a production animal that is intensively fed and reared is purely to provide a profit to the farmer, they will be fed ingredients that make them grow very fast ie hormone additives and fishmeal to promote this rapid growth. They are in close confinement so can transmit diseases so there is a level of regular antibiotic use, as well as antihelmintic use (wormers). The fishmeal would not be high grade to keep costs low, so most likely contains heavy metals. Antibiotics, growth enhancers, heavy metals and wormers are all artificial ‘toxins’ in a mammalian or avian body and they are excreted via the very organs that the pet food companies use to make up the pet food.
With this in mind, whether feeding raw meat or dry high heat treated dog biscuits, feeding meat from another animal or bird is certainly not the healthiest for your pet. Feeding human grade raw or cooked meat to your pets lessens the toxin risk but is certainly not kind and sustainable as it encourages and sustains the meat industry that as you will see below is a disaster to our future.
A greater risk of cancer with a high red meat and processed meat diet
In October, 2015, 22 scientists from ten countries met at the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in Lyon France to evaluate the carcinogenicity of the consumption of red meat and processed meat. From their research, the working group concluded that consumption of red meat can be classed as a Group 2A carcinogen. It is worse if the meat is fried or cooked which raw meaty diet feeders would probably claim to be safe then for their pets, but the feeding of the very unkind raw meat is in itself a massive environmental hazard (following on from our Coronavirus scare) and every effort should be made to lessen any form of contamination of bacteria or viruses in our homes and environment. Read the full report of the carcinogenicity of consumption of red meat.
These statistics are frightening in our pets as nothing is being done about the high meat content of petfood except more high meat diets seem to be produced as our vegan vet experienced on a trip to a Petcare Convention in February 2020.
Cancer is a heartbreaking diagnosis to make in our pets as their lives are so short and if it can be prevented by simply making a dietary change to a kinder more sustainable plant-based diet, then we should all be doing it for ourselves and our pets.
Dioxins are environmental pollutants that accumulate in the fatty tissues of animals
Dioxins are environmental pollutants. They belong to the so-called “dirty dozen” – a group of dangerous chemicals known as persistent organic pollutants (POPs) that occur in high levels around built up areas and factories (close to where dairy cows and sheep graze). Dioxins are of concern because of their highly toxic potential on our organs as well as those of our pets if meat is the main diet. They too can cause cancer in both us and our pets as well as affecting our organ systems .
More than 90% of human and pet exposure to dioxins is through the food supply, mainly meat, dairy products and fish. Feeding the fatty portion of the meats is part of the problem as that is where dioxins accumulate, so yet another reason to turn to a more sustainable plant-based diet.
What about fish meat – is that any healthier?
Many dog foods that claim to be better for your dog’s skin health contain high levels of fish. We are all aware of how fragile our ocean ecosystem is at the moment and there is no such thing as ‘sustainable fishing’. We badly need to protect our oceans and keep the smaller fish in the ocean to feed our seabirds and seals. Imagine a world with no penguins as their food (very small fish ideal for pet food) is being so badly overfished. Heavy metals in fish is now a major health issue, with mercury a particular threat, as well as lead and DDE (the toxic product which appears when the pesticide DDT breaks down).
In addition, PCB’s (polychlorinated biphenyls) are synthetic chemicals now appearing at toxic levels in fish, and the effects of these are so severe as to cause cognitive impairment (dementia) in heavy fish eaters within a matter of months. The concern is these fish are possibly being used in our pet foods. Chicken and intensively farmed cattle are also fed fishmeal as part of their diets so the cycle of heavy metals and toxins in the food chain continues! Feeding fish to our pets is a huge concern and not sustainable.
The threat of climate change
Although this does not focus on the direct relationship of feeding meat to our pets, this article shows how the consumption of meat is one of the key players in climate change. Pet food producers will defend their corner saying that they only use the ‘byproducts’ of the meat industry in the food, but every part of an animal that is used is profit to the farmer and encourages further farming and every animal fed and watered and have its waste washed away during its short lifetime, exacerbates global warming and climate change, so yes, we feel that this A VERY REAL DANGER TO FEEDING OUR PETS MEAT!
Something that so many owners who transition to plant-based notice with their dogs – how soft the fur becomes!
I have been contacted by so many owners feeding their dogs plant-based and some of their dogs have had issues with painful urinary crystals…..
The majority of foods we eat and feed to our pet (especially plant-based) are healthy and good for them, but these are the few exceptions to be aware of
Gradual changes allow the appropriate changes of digestive enzymes and intestinal microbiome
We recommend these Omega 3 capsules above the other brands as they …..
We have Bramble the dog who wanted to live forever as proof that vegan diets help our pets live longer healthier lives
Owners of dogs on plant-based diets do report that their pets appear happier and calmer
We are so passionate about plant-based feeding in dogs, that we want to support you and hopefully make it affordable for you
Only by convincing vets that it is the way forward, will we together have any success as plant-based feeders of ensuring that it becomes a very viable and superior option to feeding our dogs
The maned wolf really blows the theory of our pet dogs needing meat in their diet completely out the water
An online survey in 2019 revealed that around one in three owners may be willing to consider switching to a vegan diet for their pet in the future
This is one of our biggest concerns as pet owners that we are not getting the balance just right for the health of our pet