Eating solely packaged food is horrible for humans, and unsurprisingly we’re finding out it’s also not good for dogs.
Until recently (for decades) everyone said that dogs should not eat “people food.” That’s what we were told.
In the past we were told (from media, vets, etc) that dogs should eat “dog food,” you know, the kind you buy at the grocery store in the dog food section. And that we should not feed them the food that we (humans) eat…the real food, or change their diet at all for that matter beyond their kibble or wet food. So despite our fur babies pleading eyes, we held back from sharing what we were making for themselves (even though we may have wanted to!). Those gorgeous chickens, and beef…or even vegetables and fruit were not for doggies…dogs got a scoop of dog food.
Chicken is a real food. So are carrots and peas, but those (and so many foods) are great for dogs and humans! So what’s with this ‘dog food’ and ‘people food’ business?
But what does that even mean?!
What is dog food? And what is real food?
Today, feeding our dogs is harder than it has to be. That’s ironic seeing as there are specific isles dedicated to nothing but “dog food” at the grocery store.
Even though commercial dog food is so readily available, and cheap, we’re further away than we have ever been from providing our canine companions the nutrition their little bodies need. Further away than we ever have been when it comes to feeding them natural food.
Is this progress, or a problem?
There is an avalanche of contradictory information to confuse us, as most people who provide it are motivated by profits even more than they are motivated by the canine’s species overall health.
The fact that so many different “dog foods” exist is overwhelming. And most claim to be the healthiest, and best for your dog…most claim to have your dogs health as their #1 priority. But do they?
Right now, in the US, most canines are eating dry commercial dog food. And it’s serving them…to a point. But regardless of your opinion on that, just think about something for a second:
Most Dogs are not eating ‘real food.’ Real food meaning food that is produced by nature, not a science lab. They haven’t been for decades, and we’re starting to understand some of the consequences more clearly now than ever.
Sure, there is a semblance of real food in those little dry kibble pieces (or even the wet cans of food), but not real like the word used to mean. Before our dogs put that stuff in their mouth animals have been slaughtered (after being fed questionable diets up until that point) and their bodies heavily processed through machinery…things have been added, some of which are grown in labs like science experiments. Just reading the nutritional information on a bag of dog food will show you how far away from “real” ingredients we’ve come in many instances.
And to complicate matters, not only is that what is most readily available…there’s actually myths circulating that it’s bad to feed dogs ‘real’ food. There’s a lot at stake in the dog food market, and so I guess it makes sense that we’ve been fed a lie that ‘dog food’ is ONLY for dogs, and human food is ONLY for humans.
But what is this costing our dogs? What consequences are we seeing from feeding dogs “dog food” for so long? And is there an alternative or progressive steps we can take? It’s been a long time since anyone’s been advocating our dogs eat anything other than “dog food.” But our dogs are like our babies, and the loyal doggie parents I’ve encountered are always looking for ways to provide their babies with the best care they can.
Those are the questions that I found answers too in CHOW, by Rick Woodford. And finally, there’s a voice advocating that perhaps it’s natural and good for dogs to eat “real food,” — or ‘people food’ as we’ve dubbed it.
Why I think everyone with a dog needs to have this book?
Well, for one, dogs are different than humans. Just like there are certain foods that a human shouldn’t eat (like specific berries for instance that do not react well in our systems), there are certain things (like grapes) that don’t react well in a doggie’s system. Rick knows everything about this, and will make sure that you don’t make some rookie mistakes when starting to feed your dog real food.
Even more than that though, I think people need to read CHOW because it makes something that can seem impossible and scary really accessible and fun. It feels so good to be in control of my dogs diet (and not have to worry about feeding her real foods that aren’t actually good for her), just like I am my families. It’s fun to cook for Mydas.
The reason that I asked Rick to take time for an interview though is because of how clearly he exposes a few of the Big Myths about feeding your dog, myths that I’m committed to shutting down through informing people. And how EASY he makes it to start integrating “cooking for your dog” into normal life, just like you would a kids nutritional needs.
Like the idea that “people food” is for people, and “dog food” (whatever that means) is for dogs.
After watching the highlights from my interview with Rick, I think you’ll be floored by some of the things you used to think were true. I know I was after reading his book.
Most off all, that dogs can (and should) eat “real food” too!