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Pet Food Nation: The Smart, Easy, and Healthy Way to Feed Your Pet Now Paperback
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On page 134 it is recommended to limit water intake to pets with diarrhea. Anyone who has had to take care of puppies with parvo virus ( a deadly virus which causes diffuse watery diarrhea) would know this would be one way to quicken the demise of these patients. A common misconception is that "watery things" like canned food or water itself causes diarrhea or soft stool. It was disheartening to see this comment, as these poor animals who already have a fluid deficit from abnormal watery stools (diarrhea) need MORE water, not less. Of course they also need help finding the cause then getting some help for the problem.
Other more minor things: the first four recipes listed for dogs (which are classified as ones to be used as main/daily) are seriouly lacking in calcuim, not to mention other nutrients. The author does touch on calcium/phosphorous, and vitamns/minerals in other areas in the book, but for someone using the book as a reference before reading it cover to cover would not know this. Her arguments against fresh/uncooked(raw) diets is that they are "ick"y, she has personal reservations about the people that feed this way (they "are a bit much" ),and feels that fresh feeding is too complcated and very strict, which actually couldn't be further from the truth. Most anti-fresh/raw proponents feel that those diets aren't strict enough.
For people just starting out, please refer to a book that is tried and true, and has stood the test of time, Dr Richard Pitcairns , which is carried on Amazon:
The new Dr. Michael Fox book, Not Fit For A Dog, is a great current synopsis of the latest pet food crisis, including all the most recent recalls.
The book is divided into three general parts. The first part talks about the history and the state of the pet food industry. The second part goes into your pet's general nutritional requirements and commercial food (and it's ingredients) versus home cooked food. The third part discusses nutritional requirements for different breeds (very general), provides some sample recipes (about a dozen each, for cats and dogs) and lists different vitamins and minerals and their sources, functions and the results of deficiency and excess.
The book also contains a lot of factoids, questions and answers (FAQ style) and debunks some popular pet food/nutrition myths. I'd recommend this book to start you out in your pet nutrition research, but you'd probably want to read additional books for more in-depth information.
Weiskopf's view on commercial food is that it is not the healthiest diet for our pets. She explains why she believes this is the case (explaining the use of rendered products and other ingredients) and talks about other options. While she recognizes there are many ways to feed pets...commercial, a combination of commercial and homemade, strictly homemade, raw, and so on...she encourages people to switch their pets over to homemade. She believes a diet of fresh and cooked foods is the most nutritious diet for our pets. And, if you do decide homemade is the way to go for your pet, you'll find quite a few recipes included in the book.
While her preference is to feed homemade, Weiskopf recognizes that won't work for everyone. With that in mind, she goes into how to read a pet food label - what the placement of ingredients means, what those ingredients actually are, and what terms like lite, low-calorie, and lean actually mean.
Pet Food Nation is a good book to read to get an overview of the current pet food situation and what changes you might want to consider making to your pet's diet as a result of all the recalls. Is it the only thing you should read on pet nutrition, different ways to feed your pets, or on this year's pet food crisis? Absolutley not, but it's a fast read and worth reading, especially if you haven't been watching the recall all that closely or feel a bit overwhelmed and unsure of what to feed your pet.