FULL DISCLOSURE: I am not being compensated for this post by Nutro or Merrick, though I have received food or compensation from both in the past.
I got into an argument in a beagle Facebook group.
It was over an article by Reviews.com that claimed only 25 dog food brands were "safe." I disagreed with some of the article's assertions, including regarding certain ingredients and some of their methodologies.
I was basically told (passive-aggressively) that I was knowingly putting my dogs in danger by feeding them "unsafe" dog food.
People, I'm done. I'm over it.
This has been something long simmering for me. It all started back in 2012 when I was first looking for a new dog food for Lulu. So many times I saw people admonish others that if they can't afford the best dog food, they shouldn't have a dog.
The best, by the way, was Blue Buffalo. Acolytes of Blue Buffalo sufficiently swayed me from ever wanting to feed my dog that food brand.
And yes, there are definitely dog foods of low-quality, and some that are downright dangerous. They are also among the top-selling foods in the world.
But just because you can't feed your dog raw food, or home cooked food, or a top-tier boutique dog food, does not make you a bad parent! In a world where people are taping their dogs' mouths shut, or leaving them chained with no food or water, or setting them on fire, to tell someone they shouldn't have a dog because they feed them a less than stellar food is ridiculous and does harm to the cause of rescuing pets.
I feed Lulu Nutro Natural High Protein. It's a grain-free food. She's been eating Nutro for years. She has all the signs of a healthy dog. My vet says she's in great health.
Jasmine is now eating Merrick Limited Ingredient Diet since she has chicken allergies. Both brands were flagged as being unsafe by Reviews.com . But these are hardly bad foods! The Merrick brand was flagged as unsafe because they've had recalls. They haven't had one since 2011.
Nutro was flagged for the ingredients, but as Dog Food Advisor shows, the ingredients are quality.
Instead of shaming people for what they are feeding their dogs, maybe we should educate them on what makes a good dog food? Maybe we should be teaching them how to read nutritional labels on dog food bags (though lord knows many can't even read the labels on human food)? Maybe we should teach them how to properly portion out food for their dogs?
We are all just trying to take the best care of our pets that we can. Lets support each other instead of tearing each other down.