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Raw Feeding for Pets is a Trendy Risk, Says CSU

People who feed their pets a raw meaty bones diet are putting their pets and entire households in jeopardy and should consider other diets, says Dr. Camille Torres-Henderson of Colorado State University’s James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital Small Animal Practice.

Adherents claim that pets eating raw diets have shinier coats, healthier skin, cleaner teeth, improved immunity and easier weight management. Impassioned testimonials about raw food diets often include anecdotes that might seem persuasive.

Unfortunately, there is no scientific evidence to support such claims, and the veterinarians at Colorado State University do not recommend feeding raw diets to pets. — Dr. Torres-Henderson

In this June 10, 2014 article published by CSU, Dr. Torres-Henderson goes on to advise pet parents to “analyze nutritional claims and look for the research to support those claims, especially if they seem too good to be true.”

While much of the raw feeding success stories are anecdotal, it’s hard to dispute these examples of how well the diet works for certain cats and dogs when you experience the benefits firsthand. We respectfully dispute calling it trendy, when the raw food diet for pets has been growing in popularity since the early 1990s.

We saw the raw diet benefits ourselves when Tripawds founder Spirit Jerry ate raw, and we see how bright and clean our Wyatt Ray’s teeth stay because he loves gnawing on a raw meaty bones.

Yes there’s a salmonella risk when feeding raw, but when you consider how often commercial pet food is recalled for the same reason, the risks seem on par with one another don’t you think? CSU cites other reasons for not choosing a raw diet, including choking on bones and nutritional deficiencies, of which most veterinarians will concur.

A raw deal? The trendy ‘ancestral diet’ might not be best for your pet.  — CSU’s Dr. Torres-Henderson

There’s one thing that we can agree with when it comes to this article: there is no one perfect way to feed a dog or cat. We recommend doing your research and working with a holistic-minded vet to decide if a raw food diet is right for your pack.

Meanwhile here are some great resources for learning more about feeding a raw diet to your dog or cat so you can talk to a vet about your findings.

The Barf Diet
(Raw Feeding for Dogs and Cats Using Evolutionary Principles)

What Your Dog Is Begging For!:
Raw Meaty Bones, Your Dogs Best Friend.

Dr. Becker’s Real Food for Healthy Dogs and Cats

Tripawds Spokesdog Wyatt Ray says “Eat more bones!”

German Shepherd Wyatt loves to eat raw bones
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2 thoughts on “Raw Feeding for Pets is a Trendy Risk, Says CSU”

  1. WOW! Hard to believe anyone from CSU would make such a statement with so many “real life experiences” to the contrary.

    It seems that anything “alternative” (for lack of a better word”), is put under microsope far more so than anything “conventional”.

    Whether it’s natural supplements and herbs, a vegetarian diet, any “holostic” approach at all to our over-all well being, faces a ridiculous amount of scrutiny. Going up against the meat industry or pharmaceutical giants takes a lot of courage!!

    Whoa…….off my soap box and back on task!!

    This is so timely! I’ve been doing a bit of research (using this site as my #1 resource!) on this as I’d like to phase Myrtle into a raw diet. I will keep vaccines to an absolute minimum amd won’t spay her til she completes one heat cycle. This, along with at least part raw organic, combined with maybe Honest Kitchen or EVO, etc. should give her a “leg up”…yeah, pun inteneded!

    I may even ourchase all THREE books!

    Thank you, as always, for bringing so much information to us!

    Sally, Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle!

  2. Hey Sally, glad you found this useful. I can see why conventional-minded vets poo-poo raw feeding, there’s just not enough concrete studies done on it to convince them otherwise. Until there’s big $$ behind raw feeding studies, I don’t see it changing. Until then we just have to go on anecdotal evidence and work with holistic-minded vets to ensure good nutrition.

    I love the way you’re thinking about Myrtle’s upbringing, totally hear ya on why you’re doing what you’re doing. Be sure to check out the Ted Kerasote book we recently reviewed for more great info about raising a long-lived, healthy dog:

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