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Junk food killing pet cats and dogs

– Mon Apr 5, 6:41 am ET

PARIS (AFP) – The junk food and poor eating habits affecting humans is also killing their four-legged pals, say veterinary surgeons and experts.

Allergies and obesity are reducing the life expectancy of Lassies and Mittens nourished worldwide on industrial foodstuffs, said Gerard Lippert, a Belgian acupuncturist for animals who has just completed a study on the diets of 600 dead dogs.

"Pets, like humans, are victims of junk food," he told AFP.

Of the 600 furry corpses he examined "those fed on processed foods died three years earlier than those fed on food made in the home."

Dogs, he added, "originally were omnivores who shared their food with humans."

Rippert said he was increasingly called on to heal skin, motor and digestive problems as acupuncture was an all-embracing method enabling work on practically all organs.

"Dry dog food and cat food croquettes are over-heated, which destroys vitamins, trace elements and other basic nutritional elements," he said.

"We don't know the origin of the proteins in the foods," he added. "And there's an excessive amount of cereal, often genetically modified, and very little vegetables."

"We're turning our dogs and cats into ruminants," he said.

Laurence Colliard, a veterinary surgeon and nutritionist located in the Paris suburbs, estimates that only five percent of French pet-owners cook food for their four-legged companions.

France is Europe's top pet nation -- with 7.8 million dogs and 10.7 million cats, according to a 2008 study by the Sofres/Facco polling institute.

"I'm seeing an increasing number of allergies, diarrhea, vomitting, skin dermatitis as well as cases of obesity, specially amid cats because of the excessively high energy content in industrially-produced cat foods," said Colliard.

Pet owners tend to favour processed foods because of the difficulty of preparing nutritionally balanced meals, which in an ideal world should contain some 50 nutrients as well as meat, vegetables, rice and pasta. An animal's age, weight and exercise routine also need to be taken into account.

The packs on offer on supermarket shelves also claim as a bonus to reduce nasty urine smells and modify the consistency of animal poop.

The pet food industry was born in England where James Spratt produced the world's first dog biscuits in 1860.

Some 150 years later, many Internet sites are calling for a return to natural foods for pets.

BARF or Biologically Appropriate Raw Food is a type of pet diet that consists of raw meat, bones, and organs," says www.barf.com. "It is the practice of feeding domestic pets their evolutionary diet as a way of maximizing their health and longevity.

"Dogs should not eat cooked or processed food," it adds. "Instead, your pet should consume foods that are similar to a dog?s wild ancestors. This includes bones, fat, meat, and vegetable materials."

Likewise offers tips for natural home-made meals.

It's only in the last 100 years we have we been led to believe that dogs cannot survive without packaged food. We are told it would be harmful if we were to give them the scraps from our own home cooked meals. This is pure poppycock!"

12 Responses
306867 tn?1299253309
Thanks for this.  My Schnauzer has such bad allergies.  I now feed her fish & sweet potato dog food. I'm getting so frustrated because nothing seems to be helping.   I would cook her food if it would help.  The vet always tells me .....no table scraps.  I'm gonna check this out.  It seems the healthiest dogs we had ate table scraps.
684030 tn?1415615923
hot dogs, hamburgers, pizza, french fries and potato chips... without them as special treats, I don't think that my "junk food junkie" Golden Retriever would have lived 14 years.
973741 tn?1342346373
Interesting.  My cocker spaniel/ poodle mix . . . yes, I'll admit it, she was a glorified mutt called a **** a poo . . . well, she lived to be almost 18.  I adored this dog and she ate her fair share of people food.  Pizza almost did her in though-----------  she spent the night in the emergency animal hospital with pancreatitis and it almost killed her.  Pizza was taken off her list of approved treats.  (it is still on mine, however).  I guess dogs are like people-------- everything in moderation.  
649848 tn?1534637300
We had a cocker spaniel who was 19 when she died last year.  Chocolate was her favorite thing and vets insist that chocolate will kill dogs.  Our daughter is a vet tech and she's always on her dad about giving the dogs chocolate; he's not so bad anymore - just gives them a tiny bite now and then.  

We don't give them much for table scraps -- maybe a bite or two.  Our beagle mix is way overweight (was when we got her) but is losing some weight as she gets older. She likes carrots, but she'll eat almost anything that doesn't try to eat her first.......lol.  We also have another cocker spaniel that we rescued last year. She's 10 yrs old gets her little bites of left over meat/fat too.
306867 tn?1299253309
We have a 17 yr old border collie.  We consider her on hospice care so she gets to eat what ever she wants. The other dogs are so jealous.....Easter morning she had pancakes, scrambled eggs and sausage.  We have 5 dogs total, had 7 but lost 2 last year.
649848 tn?1534637300
Wow, your dog ate a better Easter breakfast than *I* did.....................lol
306455 tn?1288865671
My Rotty, Rocky will eat just about anything, fruit, veggies, rocks and blankets but has a special liking for paper towels, tissues, toilet paper and bandages. My whole family has to be on constant alert to shut bathroom doors and cover garbage cans because he will search these things out to eat them. Wonder what his diet is lacking?
1056589 tn?1273750702
I give my dogs fruits and vegies..I also give them lean chicken breast and fish for snacks,I put them in the dehydrator.I make homemade dog bisciuts too.....I dont eat garbage and I dont want then to either.....My dogs eat Eagle Pack Holistic Select dog food and do fantastic on it......
It's pretty obvious that I dont have kids......lol
973741 tn?1342346373
Sure you do Stormy . . .  your kids just have tails!  LOL
1056589 tn?1273750702
Yes Fur Kids......LOL
306867 tn?1299253309
I'm another one with only furry kids.  I wonder if I had children would they be spoiled brats like my dogs ? lol
1056589 tn?1273750702
my  human kids would probably be worse...LOL
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