Feeding Raw Food Diets to Dogs and Cats: What is the Evidence?

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SKU: TWV1565610011 Category:
Duration :

Speaker :
Marge Chandler
Category :
Small Animal



The feeding of raw meat based diets to dogs and cats has received increasing attention in recent years. Raw meat based diets can be divided into two main categories: commercial and home-prepared. Proponents of feeding raw meat based diets claim health benefits for the diets, which are so far largely unproven and not based on scientific research, but seem plausible to well-intending pet owners who want to feed a diet that will optimize health and wellness for their pets. The vast majority of homemade diets, including raw diets, are not complete and balanced, and do not meet AAFCO, NRC or FEDIAF standards; this includes diets published in books and websites. Much of the raw poultry and meats bought for human consumption are contaminated with bacteria as it is assumed that they will be cooked. The FDA is currently investigating prevalence of pathogenic bacteria in dog and cat foods labelled as raw and sold through retail stores. When handling raw food the preparer must be scrupulous in hygiene, and small children, the elderly, and the immunocompromised should not be handling it. The feeding of whole bones will not balance the diet and may cause oesophageal or intestinal obstruction and dental damage. The cleanliness standards for raw commercial diets are higher, although few of them meet AAFCO, NRC or FEDIAF requirements. Good research into feeding of raw diets is very limited. Marge Chandler is a consultant in small animal nutrition at VetsNow Referrals (Glasgow) and Honorary Senior Lecturer in Internal Medicine and Clinical Nutrition at the University of Edinburgh. She has a MS (Animal Nutrition) and a DVM from Colorado State University (CSU). She did residency training in small animal internal medicine and veterinary clinical nutrition at CSU and Massey University (NZ). She is Co-Chair of the WSAVA Global Nutrition Committee, Chair of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition Education Committee, Executive Board member of the American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition, and charter member of the European Veterinary Nutrition Educators Group.

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Marge Chandler


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