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Research on Fresh Feeding

Updated: Jun 9, 2022

"Raw Food is covered in Salmonella"

This is their favorite argument point. Have you ever wondered what the comparison is like between cases of Salmonella in KIBBLE vs. Raw dog food? Please read this article for an in depth look at recalls for Salmonella in Kibble vs. Raw. You'd probably be shocked to know that salmonella recalls in kibble are very high in comparison to quality raw. I am not saying there ISN'T recalls with raw, but there is significantly less. No raw food company has ever had a lawsuit against them for unsafe levels or killing dogs, either.

I will also add this, that Hill's recently got in a lot of trouble for KILLING dogs with unsafe amounts of synthetic Vitamin D. THAT'S scary! Link here.

"Fresh food has no impact on your dog's lifespan"

This is one of the points laid out by the vet tech tiktoker and it's painfully obvious how she lacks education on the topic because there is science to prove this exact point. No longer can vet staff argue that fresh food does nothing for your dog. For dogs, the current average lifespan is 11.5 years — according to the research from this study, feeding fresh foods provided dogs 23% more of their total lifespan; nearly three more years of life. The new average lifespan for dogs would be over 14 years.

Your Dog cannot digest raw meat properly "They are not a wolf".

The independent New Zealand study in 2017 found a high meat diet is easier for dogs to digest, means more nutrients are able to be absorbed, and resulted in higher levels of bacteria associated with protein and fat digestion.

These higher levels of bacteria demonstrated a dog’s gut is biologically designed to digest a diet high in meat.

While I agree that our dog's aren't wolves, I would much rather my carnivore dog's diet to be closer to a wolf than something ultra processed and close to McDonald's standards.

"Your dog needs Prescription Kibble"

They don't. I promise you. Your dog may need a low calorie diet or something similar but they never need to be on a diet that is corn and wheat based for long term. (also here's a secret but your kibble is not actually a "prescription" in any way)

The results of a landmark study conducted by animal science researchers in California show that feeding a group of dogs a freshly prepared, whole food, lightly cooked, nutritionally balanced diet made from real food is scientifically shown to increase white blood cells and blood proteins that could benefit immune health.

The study, which was conducted over 12 months, is the first time in veterinary nutrition history that the long standing practice of feeding dogs highly processed kibble diets, made from feed grade ingredients not allowed in the human food chain, is scientifically challenged. "The results support what human nutritionists have been advising for decades – stay clear of heavily processed foods, and eat wholesome, balanced meals that are prepared fresh from the highest quality ingredients available, are lightly cooked, and have no preservatives. This same advice appears to be true for our canine best friends........."

These findings shouldn't be a surprise. The USDA and US Department of Health publication specifically recommends a balanced whole food diet over heavy vitamin and mineral supplementation or processed foods for people.

A recent report revealed that the FDA feels that the process by which ingredients are defined in the pet food industry "ultimately falls short" and that "the majority of ingredients that are included in the AAFCO official publication are neither approved food additives nor are they generally recognized as safe."

"Grain Free diets and Fresh Foods cause Heart Disease"

This topic is a doozy and I'm sure every pet parent heard about the giant DCM (Dilated Cardiomyopathy)issue from the FDA in dogs a few years ago, it was a big deal. But, when I have a client that says there Vet team said this, my eyes roll so far back it hurts! If your vet has ever told you to switch to their kibble because your dog will get heart disease from grain free or's probably time for a new vet. SO many vet staff have this problem WRONG and are giving the wrong advice on this topic! They will tell you that your dog needs their kibble because it has grains and your dog needs Taurine.

Here's the thing. Grains and Taurine have nothing to do with one another and grains DO NOT contain any taurine. Adding grains to your dogs diet does absolutely nothing in relation to taurine deficiencies. The ACTUAL problem they are trying to tell you about is that grain-free kibbles that use high levels peas and/or legumes in place of grains, contain high levels of phytic-acid (but so do whole grains in general). Phytic acid is considered an "anti-nutrient" because it blocks the absorption of taurine-precursor amino acids, cystine and methionine which can lead to a taurine deficiency aka DCM. Again, feeding grains will not save your dog from heart disease and switching to a high carb processed "prescription" kibble won't either! The FDA got in a lot of trouble for posting this "data" which was self-reported cases and incomplete medical information.

"Recently, a correlation between diets with specific characteristics, such as, but not limited to, containing legumes, grain-free, novel protein sources and ingredients, and smaller manufactured brands to DCM has come under scrutiny by academic researchers and the FDA. The use of the acronym “BEG” and its association with DCM are without merit because there is no definitive evidence in the literature. At this time, information distributed to the veterinary community and the general public has been abbreviated synopses of case studies, with multiple variables and treatments, incomplete medical information, and conflicting medical data and opinions from veterinary nutrition influencers. Also, in past literature, sampling bias, overrepresentation of subgroups, and confounding variables in the data weaken this hypothesis. Additionally, based on current literature, the incidence of DCM in the overall dog population is estimated to be between 0.5% and 1.3% in the United States. However, the FDA case numbers (560 dogs) are well below the estimated prevalence. Therefore, it is impossible to draw any definitive conclusions, in these cases, linking specific diets or specific ingredients to DCM."

Due to this scientific evidence, please do not let anyone scare you with the DCM claim to switch to a processed diet.

"Dogs that eat raw are dripping with dangerous bacteria"

Your dog's digestive system is designed to combat bacteria. But as the theme of this article goes, you don't have to just take my word for it! In one 2018 study, researchers discovered that canine saliva contains various proteins, antimicrobial enzymes, and peptides that make holes in bacterial cell membranes. Am I telling you that you can make out with your dog post meal? No. However, when using common sense around fresh food, it is usually enough! (If you've somehow stayed alive your whole life preparing meat for yourself or your family, congratulations!). Use proper handling and storing methods, wash and sanitize bowls and surfaces after each meal, wash your grubby human hands and don't lick your dog's've got this!

The dog world is full of false information and unfortunately fear mongering is used to make people feel like they need to put their dog on a processed diet. We know at our core this is not right. Nothing is designed to live on a completely processed diet. I hope this article gives you some confidence in what you're doing for YOUR dog and that it brings up a friendly, open discussion with your vet team. I would love nothing more than for us to all work together on bettering your dog's life.

You would never listen to a doctor that told you to raise your human child, or yourself, on processed chicken nuggets every single day, so why do we listen to that advice when it comes to our dogs? Let's change that!

Fresh Feeding is just starting to gain real traction in the past 10 years and the Veterinary World will have no choice but to accept the science and join the movement of fresh feeding for our dogs, they cannot argue that the science isn't there anymore.

A few other studies worthy of attention:

Study shows fresh food decreased bladder cancer in Scottish Terriers. Data showed that dogs which consumed vegetables, specifically yellow-orange and green vegetables, at least 3 times per week were associated with a 70% reduced risk of developing cancer.

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