Dog food advertisements feature beautiful dogs with shiny eyes, lustrous coats and brimming vitality in an attempt to convince the consumer that their products will give their dogs equal health and vitality.
Sadly, as a general rule, nothing could be less true. There have been eleven dogfood recalls in the first two months of 2013 alone.
Many factors go into the quality of the food your dog eats. Ingredient source and freshness, safety protocols employed throughout the manufacturing process, the particular preservatives used and even shipping and storage practices significantly impact product quality. Equally important are the ingredients themselves. Many manufacturers cut corners to save costs. Dog food manufacturing lacks the stringent standards of human food production. Less expensive foods often list generic meat sources on their labels such as "meal meal" or "meat by-products". This can mean that virtually anything from euthanized companion animals to sick or diseased cattle considered unfit for human consumption have been included as part of the protein source for the food. Another way manufacturers contain costs is by putting "fillers" into their foods, such as wheat, corn, soy beans and pea fiber - foods not intended as part of the canine diet. Following are some of the potential ingredients in dog food that represent the greatest cause for alarm.