which is the least harmful? (buying meat for dogs/cats) - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 08-10-2008, 12:05 PM
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So I'm beginning my quest towards vegetarianism but but I have 4 problems - my husband, my 2 dogs and my cat. lol. They all eat meat and even though I'm not eating it I feel like all I do is buy meat. One of my dogs is on a commercial raw meat diet because it's the only thing he can eat without getting digestion issues. I'm buying about 3 lb of this meat for him every week. Anyway, this raw meat diet comes in several varieties and I would like opinions on which you feel would be the least of evils in terms of animal welfare and the environment. The varieties are:



Lamb

Venison

Beef

Chicken

Organic Chicken

Rabbit (very expensive)



The company states all the varieties except beef are antiobiotic and hormone free, and the beef is pasture fed. Which should I go with?

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#2 Old 08-10-2008, 12:06 PM
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I'm not sure that it makes much, though I couldn't handle feeding my dog lamb. A combination of meat is probably best for the dog. I can't imagine that only one kind would be a very healthy diet.
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#3 Old 08-10-2008, 06:26 PM
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Yeah, I was going to pick maybe two protein sources and rotate them. I honestly have no idea how venison, lamb or rabbit is raised.

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#4 Old 08-10-2008, 08:28 PM
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Hmmm. I suppose if you feed larger animals, that means fewer are killed? (Like he might overall eat 4 rabbits in a week, versus one deer.)



It is strange to try to think this way, but...
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#5 Old 08-10-2008, 10:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoe74 View Post

Anyway, this raw meat diet comes in several varieties and I would like opinions on which you feel would be the least of evils in terms of animal welfare and the environment. The varieties are:



Lamb

Venison

Beef

Chicken

Organic Chicken

Rabbit (very expensive)



The company states all the varieties except beef are antiobiotic and hormone free, and the beef is pasture fed. Which should I go with?



Sounds like the brand I just started feeding my dogs. (They recently had trouble with their old food.) I'm using 50% raw organic chicken and 50% grain-free chicken kibble (because I may not always be able to feed raw, especially when travelling, and don't want them to have a dramatic change in diet). I haven't started them on a second type of protein, but was planning to add the other protein from their canned variety (again for travel purposes).



But your question about "least harmful" is a good one, although I don't really have an answer. I was leaning towards lamb, as my dogs have already been exposed to it. I've heard it's good to keep at least one protein type (and one starch type) as novel in case allergies arise.
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#6 Old 08-11-2008, 02:12 AM
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Quote:
Lamb

Venison

Beef

Chicken

Organic Chicken

Rabbit (very expensive)





I presume these are all complete pre made raw and not just blocks of meat? If they are complete then it is best to vary the diet between protein sources. If they are just slabs of meat then you need to be including more eliments in your dogs diet.
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#7 Old 08-11-2008, 05:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Glitterpixie View Post

I presume these are all complete pre made raw and not just blocks of meat? If they are complete then it is best to vary the diet between protein sources. If they are just slabs of meat then you need to be including more eliments in your dogs diet.



If it's the brand I think (Nature's Variety) then it is complete.
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#8 Old 08-11-2008, 07:01 AM
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If it's the brand I think (Nature's Variety) then it is complete.



Yes, it is Nature's Variety and is a complete diet. It is the only food that doesn't give him horrible gas. I'm trying to find a canned food that he can tolerate in case we have to travel. Kibble is definitely out for him. My other dog eats Wellness Core kibble which is grain-free, and sometimes Nature's Variety kibble. Cat is on Fancy Feast canned. I know it's not the best brand but she is picky and at least it is a wet food which is important for cats IMO.



I think I will write an email to Nature's Variety to inquire about the sources of their meats.

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#9 Old 08-11-2008, 07:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Zoe74 View Post

Yes, it is Nature's Variety and is a complete diet. It is the only food that doesn't give him horrible gas. I'm trying to find a canned food that he can tolerate in case we have to travel.



Have you tried the Nature's Variety canned yet? It wasn't available when I bought last time, but I might ask if they would special order for me.



Quote:
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I think I will write an email to Nature's Variety to inquire about the sources of their meats.



I'd be very interested in that!
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#10 Old 08-12-2008, 03:24 PM
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Do not get Iams pet food. They experiament on animals.
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#11 Old 08-24-2008, 01:23 PM
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For anyone interested, I contacted Nature's Variety and they told me the venison is free range, grass fed from New Zealand. I'll probably rotate between that and the organic chicken.

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#12 Old 09-01-2008, 09:51 AM
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I do a similar sort of thing - I will never buy my dog food with poultry or pig in it as they use by far the most cruel farming methods (In britain anyway). from what I gather rabbit is usually farmed in small cages or hutches, although the local butchers around me sell rabbit that has been shot by farmers/ teenage boys as pest control and to earn a bit of money. I would say wild venison would be best, followed by lamb which (in britain) is just about always reared outside for their whole lives. after that would probably come farmed venison, then beef.



Organic should be a safe bet too as (again, in britain -not sure about the rest of the world) as they have strict welfare standards.
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#13 Old 09-05-2008, 06:00 AM
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You know, actually, dogs can be vegetarians and meet all their nutritional requirements. Cats can't as they can't produce their own taurine...



I work at a veterinary hospital and I'll ask the vets today about this. We had a big long argument over it and vegetarian dogs can survive healthily, it is true. I'll ask about some of the foods and/or studies to back this up, but I'm sure this would be a good idea if you're interested!





ETA: sorry just realized that food variances give your dog gas... I don't know if making him veggie would help that LOL... I do know that switching up foods alot can cause gas, so you might want to stick with something and then make a gradual switch back and forth, it'd be gentler.
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#14 Old 09-09-2008, 09:44 PM
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Originally Posted by luv4sheep View Post

I do a similar sort of thing - I will never buy my dog food with poultry or pig in it as they use by far the most cruel farming methods (In britain anyway). from what I gather rabbit is usually farmed in small cages or hutches, although the local butchers around me sell rabbit that has been shot by farmers/ teenage boys as pest control and to earn a bit of money. I would say wild venison would be best, followed by lamb which (in britain) is just about always reared outside for their whole lives. after that would probably come farmed venison, then beef.



Organic should be a safe bet too as (again, in britain -not sure about the rest of the world) as they have strict welfare standards.





I never ever pick rabbit. Not because they're farmed cruel or anything, I'm not sure if there the wild ones or those ones in teeny cages, but I just can't stand the thought of my cat eating a rabbit, as she's killed one of my rabbits and almost killed another. For our dog, I get beef, as cows have a pretty darn good life over here! For my cat I get seafood
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#15 Old 09-09-2008, 10:53 PM
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I never ever pick rabbit. Not because they're farmed cruel or anything, I'm not sure if there the wild ones or those ones in teeny cages, but I just can't stand the thought of my cat eating a rabbit, as she's killed one of my rabbits and almost killed another. For our dog, I get beef, as cows have a pretty darn good life over here! For my cat I get seafood



Where are you located that cows have a good life before being killed for food?
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#16 Old 09-11-2008, 08:00 PM
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New Zealand. The cows get to live in huge paddocks, with really lush grass, and silage and stuff.
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