Why Pet Food Matters

New York City loves their pets. Today, there are roughly 1.1 million of them living in the Big Apple—or one pet for every eight people—according to the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

As pet parents begin to accept their furry friends as true family members, they’re attempting to ensure that their pets are receiving the best diets. Many are turning to raw pet food diets—meaning raw meat—as opposed to the traditional model of dry kibble and canned food. But is it safe? Is it as nutritious as dry food?

Evidence in the pet food recall database of the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), suggests that a growing number of raw food and dehydrated pet products contain salmonella—a lethal poison for both pets and humans. In the U.S., foodborne illnesses poses a $77.7 billion economic burden each year, according to the Journal of Food Protection.

More so, there is still an ongoing debate among national pet associations and veterinarians if raw food diets are even the best option for pets, citing health concerns. Typically, the prevalence of salmonella, E. Coli or campulobacter found in raw meat sold for human consumption varies from 10 to 20 percent of all contaminated meat, according to the FDA. In regards to pets, one study of 112 samples of raw meat diets developed for racing greyhounds determined salmonella was in 45 percent of the diets (50 of 112), and 66 percent (70 of 106) tested positive for salmonella based on a DNA probe, according to a November 2004 FDA report. But commercial raw food diets aren’t the only ones with recent recalls—several salmonella-linked recalls were tied to dry pet foods and treats as well. What does it mean for your pet-family member?

This investigation/website examines vet and national organization recommendations for a raw food diet, and how to safely prepare, feed  and store a pet’s food. It also offers recommendations on how to perform emergency care if an owner suspects poisoning, salmonella, or another foodborne illness exposure. The goal of this investigation is to make the average pet parent consumer aware of the unknown food dangers associated with owning a pet, what they can do, and how to protect themselves and their pets from exposure to foodborne illnesses. Also, if a pet parents wants to create his or her own treats from ingredients they already have in their own kitchen, what is suitable and what is toxic to your pet? We’ll tell you—and even throw in some recipes!

After reviewing this website, we hope you’ll be better prepared to care for your beset friend and their nutritional needs with everyone’s safety in mind.

Have fun feeding your pets!

Kaitlyn and Jasmine

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