Organic Pet Food- necessary or millennial fad?
We know what you’re thinking: organic food? For a dog? Cue the eye roll. Isn’t this all a bit excessive?
It’s true that products made from organic ingredients come with a heftier price tag, and your furry little customer is probably not too concerned about the living conditions of the animal that provided that liver treat you’re dangling in front of his nose, so why bother?
With the exception of the errant “goodies” they so charmingly snap up off the pavement, we have the power to choose what our animals ingest every day. It’s no secret that our diet directly impacts our mental, digestive & emotional health and the same goes for your pup; food can determine whether your dog will thrive or if he will be plagued with health problems like allergies, fatigue or upset tummy.
It’s an unfortunate fact that the pet food industry is not highly regulated and the vast majority of companies are far more interested in making a profit than making sure their food is at an acceptable standard; fillers, chemicals, sub-standard grain, soy and meat meal are rampant in many popular biscuits and kibble brands. These products are also pumped with fat and artificial flavouring so your dog will eat it up, none the wiser. Meat meal or derivatives can often include inedible animal parts such as beaks, feet or hooves. Over time, these types of products will leave you dog overweight, sick and at a higher risk for developing cancer or diabetes (yes, they can get it too!)
So how do we know what food is organic? And what does that really mean?
Although pet food is not heavily regulated here in the UK, the organic market is; this is why we believe that buying organic products for your dog is one of the best decisions you can make. Companies which grow, process or import organic ingredients must be registered and approved by an organic certification body that has been accredited by the Department of Environment & Rural Affairs (in our case that certification body is Organic Farmer’s and Growers); in order to receive certification, a company must prove its products are free of genetically modified organisms, antibiotics, chemicals, artificial flavourings and are made of at least 95% organic ingredients (The Furry Chef is 100% organic!). In the case of meat products, the cuts must be human-grade (no hooves!) and the animal must have been reared on a fully organic feed (again, ensuring that the product is completely chemical-free). A common misconception is that “all natural” pet foods are organic- this is not true. Only organic-certified products are organic! However, all organic pet food is all natural.
In an ideal world, all the pet food on the shelves would be safe and nutritious for your fur baby to eat; unfortunately, that is not the case. When you buy organic, you are also buying the certainty that the product is the best quality it could possibly be while also being highly nutritious and safe. We know Fido doesn’t care if his peanut butter is free of pesticides, but that’s why he has you!