Skip to main content

The Bar has been Raised

Related News


  1. km

    Thanks Susan. For anyone who is interested:

    This is a rescue group that places Beagles who were previously used for animal experiments in a research labs into homes. I believe most of the dogs are used in cosmetic, household products, pharmaceutical or medical research vs pet food, but each case varies. Very sad.

    1. Carol Anne Rayson

      In many ways we Westernized humans and our pets are all victims of an ongoing experiment in modern Industrialized food – which we then all pay for dearly , with our ill-health – which then keeps Big Pharmas coffers overflowing – kudos to those who are taking the time to learn to think outside the big bag – kudos to Susan for providing a forum and a database – bringing the madness out into the open and kudos to those who work tirelessly to help bring awareness to the lives all those the poor lab animals many who give their lives for human profit and vanity

  2. Peter

    Big pet food will reject your challenge. It is too dangerous for them to acknowledge.

    Until the late 1980s, nutritional standards for dog food used by the industry were set by The National Research Council (NRC) of the Academy of Sciences, “a private, nonprofit institution that provides science and technology advice under a congressional charter.” The original NRC standards were based on purified diets, and required feeding trials for pet foods claimed to be “complete” and “balanced.” However, pet food manufacturers found the feeding trials onerous and expensive, and subsequently AAFCO designed an alternate procedure for asserting the nutritional adequacy of pet food: by testing the food for compliance with “nutrient profiles.” This provided a way to sidestep ethical standards for evaluating the foods. To establish these standards, AAFCO created “expert committees” for canine and feline nutrition. In 2006, the NRC published new values, which have not yet been incorporated into AAFCO protocols.

    Consumers don’t realize how little the AAFCO standards suggest. The actual AAFCO feeding trial protocols (the more expensive alternative to nutrient profiling) for an “adult maintenance” diet dictate that a manufacturer must exclusively feed the test food to only 6 animals for 6 months; (8 animals are required at the start; however, 2 of them may be dropped from the trial for non-diet-related reasons). Foods intended for “growth and reproduction” must be tested for only 10 weeks. In lieu of these tests, however, a standard chemical analysis may also be used to determine that a food meets the profiles. AAFCO rules require a statement on the label stating which method was used. Many consumers would not consider this small sampling to be representative of the range of tolerance for a species as varied as dogs are.

  3. Lori S.

    This is a really exciting and heart-warming development. Thank you for writing about it. I will definitely look into these foods!

  4. Dr Amy Nesselrodt

    Thanks so much Susan for bringing attention to this issue. I just want to add that in my trial we did complete blood chemistries and CBC’s and also urinalysis, plus body condition scores, dog weights and fecal weights. The chart you shared shows the same values that AAFCO collects, but like Dr. Sandelin, we did not stop there, I also think the AAFCO trials do NOT examine sufficient parameters. I have results on my web pages for all the data we collected for day zero, 6 months and 12 months. Thanks again, Dr. Amy

  5. Wanda

    Thank you Susan for writing about this. Also thank you Just Food for Dogs and Answers Pet Food for taking this step forward. Already knew about Answers Pet Food but now even more interested in. Hoping it will come to a store near me soon.

  6. Claire

    I’d have to question why a vet was in the trial. I’m very suspicious about that and would want to know exactly her relationship and the reasoning for having a vet as a trial participant, other than to examine the dogs. I remain cautiously, very cautiously optimistic…but as we all know, this commercial pet food industry has completely lied over and over and over to the public and STILL to this day admonishes raw fed diets. So until they prove to me, beyond a shadow of doubt of their integrity, this pet owner will remain one who will not endorse or ever buy a product that did not come out of my own kitchen.

    1. Dr Amy Nesselrodt

      Claire, please help, if the vet you are referring to is me, why are you suspicious or what are you suspicious of? If you are asking about me I don’t understand your concern. I did it because I was interested in it. Read my web site and blog–I explain it all. And I tell it all. Why does my being a vet seem a negative to you? Wow, I thought pet owners would be excited a vet had that much interest in raw. I don’t even know how to address your concern because I don’t understand it. I did have an another vet do the exams if that helps ease your mind. He also took the samples in case anyone questioned were they actually from my dogs.

  7. Dr. Laurie Coger

    As a veterinarian and veteran raw feeder, I am thrilled when another veterinarian is open to raw feeding! Having a veterinarian willing to do a trial with their own dogs is absolutely huge! I hear your concerns as this is a commercial food, but if you read more about Answers, I think you will find they have a good product line that can make feeding raw easier for owners. Many owners are not ready to take the leap and feed a more prey model (for lack of a better term) raw, and Answers is one way they can get started. Down the road they may become more open to feeding whole meaty bones and more, but giving them an easy way to start is a very good thing.

    And just to be transparent, I do not feed Answers to my own dogs, as I feed mainly whole meats/bones. I have had the opportunity to test all their products, and have used their goats’ milk in raising a litter of pups, now 2 years old. There are very few dog foods I have trust in, let alone recommend. Answers is on that short list.

    Like Dr. Nesselrodt, I am happy to answer your questions, just email me from my website,

Leave a Reply