The food you feed your dog or cat could make your pet sick. But worse, it could make you or your family sick as well. In fact, illness caused by contaminated pet food is on the rise around the world and surprisingly common. And yes it does even happen in New Zealand. Here is what you need to be aware of to keep you and your family (including your pets) safe.
Both raw and dried foods can become infected with harmful bacteria. The most common of these is salmonella. This can be passed on to humans by handling the food and can cause diarrhea and other unpleasant effects. Another less common but also harmful bacteria found in contaminated pet food is campylobacter.
Contaminations are very common and every year there are numerous food “recalls” where companies remove their products from sale due to the ingredients being tested positive for harmful bacteria and other problems.
Although feeding dried food appears to be safer than feeding raw (in fact the CDC, The American Center for Disease Control and Prevention “recommends against feeding raw food to dogs and cats because of the risk of illness to the pet as well as to people living in the household”*1) there are things you can do to ensure your risks are minimized.
When handling any pet food make sure you wash your hands thoroughly immediately afterwards. Also store the food away from human foods and don’t prepare the food in the same area as you prepare human foods.
However, the easiest precaution you can take is to feed a brand of food that has a high safety record and scrupulous health and safety practices.
And which company has the best record in all of these areas? Pro Pac and Earthborn Holistic. These are the only brands of pet food that have never been recalled due to contamination in their history – and that is 25 years!
While all of the other well-known brands have had numerous recalls, Pro Pac and Earthborn Holistic have never had a single instance of contamination – and there are a number of reasons why:
Firstly, all batches of Pro Pac and Earthborn Holistic that are exported (including to New Zealand) are produced to European Union requirements, which are much stricter than US standards. Most, if not all, other companies export their food to New Zealand using US standards.
European Union standards require a higher level of testing of the food and checking of suppliers of the ingredients. There is simply a lot more time (and cost) involved, which is why other companies avoid it if they can.
Secondly, Pro Pac and Earthborn Holistic are made only from ingredients from named, US-based suppliers. They do not use ‘anonymous’ ingredients from Asia, which have been the source of big problems in pet food. Virtually every other well-known pet food company will use Asian ingredients – and they will certainly not guarantee that their products don’t contain them. The corn used in Pro Pac is also non-GMO – unique for any US pet food.
Thirdly, both Pro Pac and Earthborn Holistic undergo testing far in excess of the norm for pet food. Every batch is tested by an independent laboratory five times before it is sent from the factory! This is the most rigorous testing in the pet food industry.
Fourthly, both Pro Pac and Earthborn Holistic only use natural ingredients that have been proved to be nutritionally beneficial to pets. There are no by products, artificial colorings, flavorings or preservatives or any of the low-cost fillers that are found in the majority of other brands.
Food contamination – harming both pets and humans – is becoming an increasing problem worldwide. By feeding Pro Pac or Earthborn Holistic you can be assured of protecting your family to the highest level possible by using the safest foods on the market.
To order Pro Pac or Earthborn Holistic in New Zealand direct from the importer visit www.petfooddirect.co.nz
*1 CDC website, http://www.cdc.gov/Features/SalmonellaDryPetFood/