Dog foods that are produced with human-grade ingredients have increased in number and popularity in recent years. In addition to containing food ingredients that are classified and handled differently than typical pet food ingredients, these products are usually less highly processed when compared with extruded kibble (see "Human Grade Dog Foods: Some Science" for details).… Continue reading More Human-Grade Research… and a Rant
I have written about this health issue before; in fact, more than five years ago in the essay "Got Gullet?. Sadly, here we are again, looking at beef gullets and thyroid glands. A Bit of Review The thyroid gland is a small organ found on each side of an animal’s trachea. When a cow is… Continue reading Give Up the Gullet
High pressure processing (HPP), also called high pressure pasteurization or cold pasteurization, is a food processing technique that has been used in the human food industry for years. Products that are routinely treated with HPP include ready-to-eat meats and meals, fruit juices, packaged dips, and jams and jellies. Another example - If you enjoy munching… Continue reading HPP and Raw Foods
Traditionally, when we discuss the history of dog foods, we look back, oh, about 150 years or so......tops. The story typically begins with a guy named James Spratt (yes, that was actually his name). Around the year 1860, Spratt created a baked patty for dogs that contained a concoction of grains, beetroot, vegetables and beef… Continue reading The VERY First Dog Foods
Recorded Webinar (Free) Human Grade Meaningful Distinction or Marketing Gimmick? Register for 6-months of full-access to this on-demand webinar Learn about labeling claims of "Human Grade" and what this term actually means (and does not mean) with regard to food quality and selection. Learn about the latest research addressing human grade pet foods. Presented by… Continue reading Free Webinar and Course Preview
Protein levels in some commercial dog foods have increased dramatically over the last 15 years. While there are many factors that drive dog food trends, this particular change occurred, at least in part, in response to pervasive (mis)perceptions that dogs are obligate carnivores [they are not] and beliefs that their diets must contain very high… Continue reading Protein – Are We Feeding Too Much?
Why Care about Copper? The mineral copper is an essential dietary nutrient for dogs. It is needed for the formation and activity of red blood cells, acts as a cofactor in numerous enzymatic reactions, and is necessary for normal skin and hair pigmentation. Copper deficiency can lead to impaired skeletal growth and anemia, but is… Continue reading Considering Copper
We are not talking about this today. THIS IS A DUCK; A MALLARD DUCK. Rather, we are discussing this. (And its relevance to your dog's food and health). What is a Maillard Reaction? In this first essay of our series, "The Maillard Papers", let's begin by defining exactly what the Maillard Reaction is (and why… Continue reading Its Maillard, not Mallard
There is currently quite a craze in the dog world regarding omega-3 fatty acids. I reviewed this important family of fatty acids and their role in canine health in a recent blog (see Facts about Flax). In short: As a recap, it is probably beneficial to increase the proportion of omega-3 fatty acids in our… Continue reading Krill – The Other Fish Oil
I have written previously about the potential risks associated with feeding raw food diets. To date, the science that is available reports that: The prevalence of potentially serious microbial pathogens is substantially higher in raw pet foods than in heat-treated foods (see The Raw Deal).The belief that freezing raw food kills food pathogens or reduces… Continue reading Is Freeze-Dried Raw Safer to Feed?
Today, let's talk about fish and fish oil, and the types of fat that these pet food ingredients can contribute to your dog's food. Some Background: Dietary fat, more specifically, fatty acids, are classified into families. Two of the most important are the omega-6 fatty acids and the omega-3 fatty acids. Both types are important… Continue reading Does this Seem (not…) Fishy to You?
No, this is not about a Disney Movie. But it IS about freezing. The freezing of dog food, actually. Raw dog food. The number of brands and forms of commercial raw dog foods available to owners has increased dramatically in recent years. A common type of raw diet is in the form of frozen rolls… Continue reading Frozen – Let it Go.
In the world of commercial dog foods, the term "human-grade" is an odd duck. The oddness occurs because the term "human-grade," while in use on labels and in marketing materials, actually has no legal definition. Rather, the regulated terms that are used to delineate between foods that are processed, marketed and sold for human consumption… Continue reading Human-Grade Dog Foods: Some Science
This blog is about science. Not to put too fine a point on this, but the name is, after all "The Science Dog", not "The Anecdotes Dog." Early in this blog's history, I wrote a series of essays that examined the principal underlying constructs of science (see The Steve Series). In a nutshell, the scientific… Continue reading It’s Not Rocket Science….But, it IS Science
Perhaps one who is wearing a top hat and carrying an umbrella? For Disney fans, Jiminy was the ever-present, somewhat annoying, arthropod who acts as Pinocchio's conscience. For our purposes, he is just another (edible) cricket. Insect Protein - All the Rage: Insect protein as an alternate and renewable protein source for dog foods is… Continue reading Hearing Crickets?