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Pet Food Nation
The Smart, Easy, and Healthy Way to Feed Your Pet Now
The Pet Food Scandal
Although it is true that the spring 2007 recall was the largest in the history of the pet food industry, it is by no means the first time tainted pet food has caused a problem.
In late 2005, the presence of aflatoxin forced a manufacturer to recall its product; in the past year, traces of aminopterin, used in rat poison, were found in dog food that turned deadly. Back in 1995, Nature's Recipe pulled $20 million worth of its product due to the presence of vomitoxin; the source of that recall has not been conclusively identified. Melamine, although not meant to be in food, is not known to be toxic. Some suspect that melamine found in the 2007 products is a "marker" for something else that is proving deadly, as yet unidentified. If that is the case, perhaps the melamine is not even necessary to the fatal tainting of pet food. No wonder pet owners are nervous; no wonder the pet food industry is nervous, too.
I hope to be able to give some relief by explaining what's at stake and what the issues are.
There are an estimated 144 million pet cats and dogs in the United States; their owners bought more than $15 billion worth of pet food last year. That's a lot of kibble. But with the threat of deadly illness hanging in the air, pet owners cannot wait for the industry or its regulators at the FDA to step in and tell them what's wrong and how it is to be fixed. There's no time, and there's too much at stake.
There is one thing, however, that pet owners can do that will not only ensure the nutritionalhealth of their companion animals right now, but in all likelihood will radically transform (and reform) the pet food industry itself: make their own pet food. For those of you who want to try, read on. For those of you who fear that it might be impractical to make your own pet food, also please read on: you will learn how to read a commercial pet food label and know just what you are giving your pet.Pet Food Nation
The Smart, Easy, and Healthy Way to Feed Your Pet Now. Copyright © by Joan Weiskopf. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.