The Shocking Truth About What’s in Your Pet’s Food

Most of us view our pets as family members, yet we are innocently but mistakenly feeding our four-legged friends food that is toxic and life threatening.

The cats and dogs that share our homes look to us to provide them with a nutritional diet that will protect them against disease and illness. By continuing to purchase commercial pet food that doesn’t have our pet’s welfare in their best interest, we are not only fueling a destructive and deceitful industry, we are also putting our pets at risk.

The Dark Side of the Pet Food Industry

As reported in the 1996 Summer Issue Earth Island Journal v11, #3 pg 27-31:

“The rendering plant floor is piled high with raw product. Thousands of dead dogs and cats; head and hooves from cattle, sheep, pigs and horses; whole skunks; rats and raccoons – all waiting to be processed. In the 90-degree heat, the piles of dead animals seem to have a life of their own as millions of maggots swarm over the carcassess.”

“Rendering plants process decomposing animal carcasses, large roadkill and euthanized dogs and cats into a dry protein product that is sold in the pet food industry.”

Unfortunately, this is the stark reality of the pet food industry, and it gets a lot worse…

What “Meat Byproducts” Really Are

If you check the label on your pet food, more likely than not you will find the primary ingredients and protein sources listed as meat byproducts or some sort of meat meal. But what exactly is this? These byproducts are the leftover parts of the animal after the meat has been stripped away from the bone. Which in reality can range from heads, hooves, beaks, feet, entrails, spleens, bones, intestines, blood and other animal parts that are classed as not fit for human consumption.

The animals that these “byproducts” are sourced from include roadkill, zoo animals, 4D livestock (dead, dying, diseased and disabled) and possibly the most sickening of all, euthanized cats and dogs. That’s right, we are forcing our pets to be cannibals and there is nothing they can do about it, so long as we continue to feed them this stomach turning concoction.

Toxic Dangers Lurking in Your Pet’s Food

Along with all these dead, diseased and decomposed animals, a whole host of unwanted and toxic ingredients are also thrown into the soup. From antibiotics, hormones and other pharmaceuticals accompanying livestock to flea collars, ID tags, surgical pins and even plastics and pesticides, the horrors of what’s hiding in our pet’s food is unimaginable.

One of the most potentially life threatening chemicals that can survive the manufacturing process are those used to euthanize cats, dogs and zoo animals, meaning the poisons that are designed to kill pets such as sodium pentobarbital, are the same ones being fed to them by profit-driven pet food companies.

Now that you understand that pet food manufacturers will go to any length to fill their foods with the cheapest ingredients possible, you won’t be surprised to learn that they are also loaded with an assortment of other scary stuff. Cheap grain fillers, chemical preservatives and artificial additives are all commonly found on the ingredient list, and none of which offer any nutritional benefit to your pet.

Nutrition Related Diseases Affecting Your Pets

Today’s modern diet of our beloved cats and dogs is a far cry from that of their ancestors. As well as supporting an industry that carries out underhanded practices in the name of money, the food we feed our pets (if you can call it food) is crippling their health, leaving them to battle no end of diet-associated illness and health conditions.

Some of the most common health problems our pets are experiencing from poor diet include:

  • Urinary tract disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Dental disease
  • Heart disease
  • Obesity
  • Chronic digestive problems
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Bloat

Whether it is from a reaction to the additives, a lack of essential vitamins and nutrients, or as a result of contamination with bacteria, drugs, mold or other toxins, our pets are riddled with disease and the pet food industry is to blame.

What Can You Do About It?

The best thing you can do to keep your companion animals happy and healthy is to learn how to readily spot which companies are trying to pull the wool over your eyes, and reject their second rate products.

Read the labels and be vigilant in what you choose to feed your pets! If in doubt, then write or call your pet food company and express your concern.

Ingredients to avoid:

  • Meat byproduct meal
  • Poultry byproduct meal
  • Fish meal
  • Animal fat
  • Propylene glycol
  • High fructose corn syrup
  • BHA and BHT

If you want to avoid commercial pet foods altogether, then why not have a go at preparing homemade pet food. It is a lot easier than you think and there are a whole host of resources available online to help get you started.

Photo Credit: marioanima


Jane Wood
Jane Wood5 years ago

My 14 year old, much loved ,quite sprightly Staffordshire Bull terrior, had become unsociabally maloderous due to gas production. I decided that in order for us to be able to take him out visiting, which he loved, I should attempt to minimise this problem. As my 89 year old mother, who adored our dog, had died and left me some extra money I thought she would have been happy that he was pampered food wise and I bought more expensive dried food. This made no difference to his smelliness. I then tried him on tuna fish and slowly he got weaker and weaker and then was unable to walk and eat at all. We carried him to the vet who suggested at his age it would be kinder to "put him to sleep". I was so distressed and took him home and cried buckets over him used Reiki healing,tempted him with titbits I read on a Care2 page and after 48 hours of nursing him he was better after a weekend. I then saw a t.v. programme about dog feeding and discovered that vets have only half a day training on nutrition and the dog food was mashed and boiled for days, grains, not compatible with dogs normal nutrients but cheaper were added and reformed to look like meat. I then started mashing up corned beef, sardines in oil and and boiled vegetables. He now is nearly back to his normal ,happy running and stick carrying and is no longer farty. Hooray. We also recorded his wonderful singing. Prayers were answered.

Bret Stockton
Bret stockton5 years ago

Ugh, my old dog eats Purina One. The #1 ingredient is chicken but just a little further down I see a couple of the ingredients to avoid. Guess by-product meals are taking the hot dog approach. And peeps wonder why I don't eat pork!

Carrie-Anne Brown

thanks for sharing

Sue H.
.5 years ago

I learned that vets send the bodies of animals for recycling into pet food nearly 30 years ago, when my cat died as a result of being mauled by 3 farm dogs. I could not let her be eaten so paid for a burial in the pet cemetery. It cost a bundle!! Unfortunately not everyone can afford to do that.

All those bodies have to go somewhere and in a weird sort of way, turning them into pet food makes financial sense. If they were wild animals they would be eaten by other wild animals. I'm not saying I condone this practice, just that it makes sense to people who manufacture pet food for a living. Our whole food system is insane and we have to cook from scratch, wash everything really well etc., just to try to stay healthy. Would we do any less for our pets?

Ritva J.
Ritva J5 years ago

This is horrible if it is true! Are there any proofs (videos, eyewitness statements etc.)?

Claudia Salas
Claudia Salas5 years ago

Poor animals, I hope that some day a someone makes a pet food company that will make good home made meals packed and then shipped to stores so people could buy them. i would do that but i don't know how. :'(

Gita Sasi Dharan
Gita Sasi Dharan5 years ago

I read, I understood and I realize !Thanks.

Norma V.
Norma Villarreal5 years ago

And whle we are labeling what goes into our pet food products, let's be aware of toxins going into human digestive systems as well.

B Jackson
BJ J5 years ago

This is totally disgusting and unacceptable. No wonder our animals are getting the same horrendous diseases as we are - food quality is about the same unhealthy crud as people food. I cook as much as I can for my animals, using game scraps from hunters.

Patricia H.
Patricia H5 years ago

After having my dog for a couple of years she started having seizures. A friend had asked me what I was feeding her. As embarrassing as it is was to say, I told her "Pedigree". After a good scolding from my friend I diligently looked for the best quality food out there for my dog. At the same time there were dog food 'recalls' that came out in the news. There were several well known named dog food companies on that recall list. After researching more about these companies & where they get their ingredients I did not trust ANY of them! So I started home cooking for her and she has not had a seizure sense. That was about 8 years ago, she is now 16 years old and healthy.- I recommend that everyone home cook.