Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Zeus has a caretaker, bad food, and condolences for Lady the pom

Guess where mummy brought me last weekend?
Firstly, we would like to say we found a wonderful person to walk and look after Zeus daily. Her name is Jenn and she also owns a Shih Tzu mix, and best of all she lives along the same street. So mummy has been walking Zeus to her home each morning and collecting Zeus each evening. Mummy intended to pay her, but after paying her once, Jenn said she's uncomfortable about accepting money and offered to look after Zeus without payment. We are deeply grateful to her because it would save us quite a bit of money, and we fully intend to pay her back in kind. She has gone beyond her call of duty. She not only walks Zeus, but has groomed and cleaned his ears, even though it's only been day 2. Thank you Jenn!

One piece of sad news we just got today after we enquired about Thor, is that Thor's other playmate, a sweet Pomeranian called Lady has been run over by a cab and died instantly. According to passers-by, the cab driver didn't stop and sped off after the incident. We were at a loss for words and are truly sorry for Lady and Thor's owner. She must be very upset. Mummy has already cursed the errant cab driver.

Also mummy would like to say something about dog food and treats after discovering one of Zeus's treats contains by-products (that particular treat wasn't bought by us).

'By-products' refer to dead, diseased, dying or decaying animals. Basically animal parts that are unfit for human consumption.  (eg: chicken by-product, pork by-product, turkey by-product, etc)

Sadly most pet owners don't read the ingredient list, or do enough research, so they are ignorant about pet food and they just buy whatever looks good. Beware of healthy claims and the word 'Vet-approved' on pet packaging. It doesn't mean anything. Also pet food that looks good or are expensive doesn't mean it's reliable.

So here are some things to look out for in pet food:

1) There should be approximately 70% meat in dog food. Dog needs much more protein than other types of nutrients. 100% meat (or grainless) is fine too.

2) Never buy any foods that has 'by-products' in it's ingredients list. These are meats that are not fit for human consumption. Try to buy foods that certify their content is safe for human consumption, organic, or free range if your budget allows it. Dogs have a strong stomach, but still it's better to be safe than sorry.

3) Manufacturers are required to list their ingredients in order of quantity. So always buy food and treats that has meat in it's first ingredient. Evo and California Natural are good examples of dog treats that are predominantly meat based.

Even if you are cheapo like mummy, there are cheaper treats like the Greedy Dog range of treats that has an ingredient list runs like this: Chicken Meal, Isolate Soy Protein, Flour, Bacon Flavour..

Notice that Chicken Meal is the first ingredient? That means Chicken Meal occupies the most quantity, followed by Isolate Soy Protein, etc, etc.

That particular dog treat with the by-product is called 'M&C Healthy Treats - Breath & Dental' and claims to be formulated by animal nutritionists.

It sounds really good right?

But its ingredient list runs like this: Wheat flour, canola oil, corn starch, dried milk, glycerin, chicken living flavouring, chicken by-product meal, salt, water, etc.

The first few ingredients are all carbs, and the only meat in it is the 8th ingredient (very little) and it's a by-product. Mummy doesn't know whether she should be thankful that Zeus only ate half the packet so far.

The ingredients don't lie, so do read the ingredients before you buy.

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