I went out to meet a good friend of mine today to do some beechcombing and dinner afterwards, and thanks to one of my dogs getting waist deep in mud, I was a little delayed getting there after having to de cake my dog of slimy mud up to his armpits.
Upon arrival, I saw my friend had sparked up a conversation with a chap and his beautiful cross breed which was in my opinon an EBT x GSD and what a beauty she was! Anyway, it turns out this dog was only 8 years old but had arthritis so was on prescription medicine for it. So me being me, I couldn't help myself but ask gently if he had thought of putting the dog on a raw diet, (her dull coat indicated to me she wasn't already on one) to which came the response in almost horror, that no he hadn't and gave me the distinct impression that he most certainly wouldn't be going down that route and was I mad suggesting such a thing. So gently leading him down the path of how much my own dog with arthritis benefits from a raw diet with golden paste and bone broth added to keep it at bay, he was still dubious but less prickly in response this time. (I will add at this point that my dog has never needed prescription medication due to the fact I will do my utmost to go the natural way, including acupuncture if pain is present. To this day she has only needed to receive acupuncture twice.)
As we parted ways, I encouraged him to google the benefits of golden paste in the hopes he might actually do the same for raw feeding too, but he did seem optimistic about the golden paste at least, so I scored myself a 4 out of 10 for getting through to him on that front.
But it does make me wonder why people act so cautiously around the subject. Is it because the majority of conventional vets (who are inadequately trained in species specific nutrition) speak out against it and therefore we end up questioning our own intelligence and/or doubt common sense? Dogs and cats are biologically designed to eat raw meat. Lets face it, animals were feeding themselves from the wild long before we got involved and they still do; They can't cook, they can't read but instinctually know what is good for them and have survived thousands of years without our "help".
When was the last time you saw a wild dog carry a BBQ on it's back, or saw David Attenborough film a pack of wolves chasing a bag of kibble because it's so tasty? Clever marketing and lies line the pockets of the big corporates. What they want us to believe is: "A heavily processed diet is good for your dog and cat" which couldn't be further from the truth. What they are ACTUALLY saying is , "We put profit before the health of the family pet and then train your vet to believe this and pass on the untruth to you".
This then makes me doubt the integrity of any vet who promotes a processed diet, usually displaying bags of kibble in their reception/waiting area.. I find it increasingly hard to digest that these intelligent beings have gone through years of training to save animal lives and yet find it hard to comprehend that animals kill to survive and thrive on raw meat, bone and offal and seasonal fruit/veg/berries. Either that, or they realise this and go back to vet college and continue their studies to become a holisitc vet, OR, turn a blind eye to their suspicions and, like the processed food manufacturers that train them, put profit before health. Two out of these three scenarios make me very uncomfortable.
I have lost count of the amount of dog owners I have met whose dog (or cat come to that) has eaten a rabbit or other wild animal at some time or other and been none the worse for it. One of my cats is becoming quite the little mouser and my Mini Spitz is her partner in crime; she catches the mice, he eats them. It's a match made in heaven and they even hunt together sometimes. Now that's a sight to see a cat and a dog team up!
Lucy Proctor - Mother of dogs and cats, dog enthusiast, self taught behaviourist and aspiring canine/feline nutritionist.