Is Raw Meat Safe For Your Dog?
An ongoing debate has been waging among dog owners, dog breeders, dog trainers
and veterinarians for some time with regard to the safety of feeding raw meat and raw food to
Advocates of the Bones and Raw Food(
BARF) regimen argue that feeding dogs raw meat is essential in order to
deliver the nutrients in a state most closely resembling those that dogs ingested in the wild 10,000 years
BARF aficionados argue that by cooking, even partially, the food that we feed
our dogs, we are removing critical nutrients and therefore not delivering a healthy and balanced diet to our
best friend. Raw meat they argue is preferable.
The result according to BARF advocates is that a dog which is not on a properly balanced raw meat dog diet will be less resistant to disease and
will likely live a shorter life.
This is the essence of BARF as I understand it. I am sure that there is more to it but our
discussion here is with regards to the safety as opposed to the nutrient value of the raw meat dog
I would acknowledge that raw meat, raw vegetables and raw fruits will contain
higher nutrient levels than those that are cooked. Nutritionists have been telling us this for
But what if we eat raw meat? And what if Fido
The FDA has issued Safety Guidance with regard to the
use of raw meat for pet (dog) diets.
What's in Your Dog's Food? Is it
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This FDA guidance is published in the
Federal Register and gives safety and nutrition information. The reason for
the FDA action was due to the upswing in raw dog food diets and the fact that dog owners may not
be aware of the nutritional and safety issues.
It is the finding of the FDA that raw dog food diets are not new and in fact
have been used by dog racing facilities for many years.
Now the trend toward raw dog food for companion dogs presents new challenges
as these dog owners may be unaware of the possibledanger of using raw meat
One of the problems is that raw meat diets are classified as “foods” and as
such does not need pre-marketing approval or certification.
The FDA goes on to state that data“… from
commercial raw meat pet foods are sparse, the potential for risk to public health from such products is
significant given the microbiological results from studies of ingredients that could compose such
There is the danger of contamination from bacteria as well as potential harm
that can be caused to the dogs teeth and gastrointestinal system if bone is ingested with the raw
Further risks exist with regard to the possibility of raw meat dog food contamination and associated disease. These risks exist
as a result of transportation,
distributors and retailers. The FDA recommends minimizing these risks by the use of irradiation and proper
transport and storage.
So the FDA has chimed in and the question remains. Isa raw meat diet safe food for your dog? Maybe and maybe not. It depends on a variety of
factors such as the as the source and health of the slaughtered food animal, the conditions of
transport,and storage both pre and post
Absent Federal legislation which has to date failed to materialize and protect
dogs from the potentially unsafe and toxic additives and ingredients in commercial dog food, I would be hesitant
to risk it.
It is imperative that every dog owner know exactly
what his or her dog is eating, what the ingredients are and whether it is safe.
Ultimately the choice is yours. If you are feeding your dog commercial dog foodyou must become familiar with
what is in the commercial dog food you buy.
You can’t wait for a law to protect you. You must become educated in this
area. Your dog’s life may depend on it !
My dog suffered
from skin conditions. I did some research and found out that many
commercial dog foods are full of junk and may even be toxic.
using the dog food I was feeding and the results were dramatic.
Do you know what your dog is eating?Find out