By Heather Zorn, P.A.S

It seems that I have an alert in my inbox almost daily regarding dog treat recalls. In particular, chicken jerky seems to be holding the #1 position for recalled treats. The reasons vary from antibiotic contamination to salmonella. What is antibiotic contamination, you ask? These treats are testing positive for antibiotics not labeled as admissible for use in poultry by the FDA.

These treats are coming from China, where the use of antibiotics and hormones is far more lenient. Which begs the question: Do you know what you are feeding your dog, or yourself for that matter?

Please, consider double-checking the ingredients before you buy the next bag of dog treats or dog food. I’m sure that most of you have no idea how dog food is made and have never had the misfortune to have to witness the disgusting rendering process, but trust me when I tell you that it is less than ideal. Meat intended for animal consumption is not anything you would ever allow in your home. Recalls due to salmonella are endless, and there is little reason why after understanding the unsanitary methods of handling the food.

Dog food and treats are not held to any standard or regulation, and are not under the control of the FDA. The cheapest meat possible is used. If you see “meat meal” or “bone meal” or “organs,” please drop the bag back on the shelf and back out of the aisle as fast as you can.
I know they are more expensive, but buy organic or all natural recipes. The less ingredients, the less likely for a problem. Unfortunately, made in the U.S.A does not mean that it is safe. They can import meat from out of the country, make the treats in the U.S. and label them “Made in the U.S.A.” It’s the truth…

For the majority, the pet food industry does not have your pet’s best health in mind. There all small companies, such as Animal Nutrition Solutions, who care more about a quality product than they do about the bottom line. It is up to you (and YOU only) to make the best decision you can for your pets. Check ingredients, make your own food/treats, buy organic, buy from companies with a stellar reputation… There are options!