February 23, 2012

Trend-spotting: Dogs Going Raw

Finally! New York Times reports that feeding raw food to dogs and cats is a hot topic around dog parks in Manhattan and nationwide.

Geoff Bowers, founder of New Zealand-based K9 Natural, a line of raw dog food, suspects the burgeoning raw-pet-food market reflects the broader interest in healthful eating. “People are looking for more and more natural products,” he said, “and since pets are considered members of the family, they want healthier options for them, too.” Mr. Bowers, a former police-dog trainer, said he converted to raw feeding after studying Alaskan wolf packs, because he became convinced that “nature provides the perfect food” for dogs.

Phil Klein, owner of the East Village holistic pet-supply store Whiskers, started selling raw food in 1988. Known to his fans as the Dogfather, Mr. Klein has published articles on the importance of feeding animals natural cuisine and keeps thick binders of thank-you notes from local pet owners who swear the raw diets he recommended cured their charges of everything from dandruff to diabetes. 

 “Though pet owners using raw foods are still only maybe 2 or 3 percent of the total, the popularity of these diets is indicated by the fact that the big box stores like PetCo are latching on,” Mr. Klein said. “It’s become hip.” 
You probably won't get much support from your veterinarian, but there are numerous online groups and plenty of resources to get you started on feeding family pets a biologically appropriate diet.  I highly recommend Works Wonders by Tom Lonsdale, DVM. Download for free.

Additional thought: Try to find current grocery coupons to save money on raw ingredients for pet food.

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