Fancy diets aren’t just for humans. Well, in fact, we still get into them, but not always for our own food. And the thing is they’ve been having some big boom lately very dangerous ways to feed pets. This is the case emetic dietwhich consists of feeding dogs and cats mainly from raw food.
This includes some fruits and vegetables, but mostly meat and fish. Sometimes it freezes earlier, but even then may pose a risk of zoonoses. For this reason, many veterinarians have already been quick to warn of the dangers that the BARF diet can pose to our pets, as well as to other animals and people around them.
The risk reaches such a point that even some veterinary clinics refuse to care for animals fed in this way. Or, if they do, they have a strict post-disinfection protocol. It is clear that if those more knowledgeable on the subject want to avoid this, we should follow suit.
Arguments with gaps in favor of the BARF diet
Proponents of the BARF diet for pets use what seems to be a very strong argument, but with some gaps. Basically, they rest on the fact that if our cats and dogs were wildThey didn’t eat cooked food. And it is true. Just as if we didn’t know fire, we would still eat raw meat. But, fortunately, we discovered it thousands of years ago. In addition, over time we have improved food safety measurespreventing many diseases. Should we give it all up simply because there was a time when we didn’t know how to do it better? Logically no.
The same thing happens with animals, as he explained in statements. hypertext veterinarian Fatima White. “The fact that they began to live with people and adapted their diet to this allowed them Lifespan increase significantly,” he says. “This is because cooked diets are effective in killing pathogens that can cause serious illness“.
In addition, there is a basic mistake in assuring that these animals will predators in nature. Cats are strict carnivores, while dogs are omnivores. In any case, the BARF diet can also include vegetables, so in this case it will not be wrong. However, feeding raw food to pets is still not practical.
But the topic is feeding natural dogs and cats are not the only argument that BARF diet advocates make. Many also argue that foods commonly fed to pets may contain toxins and dangerous chemicals. But it’s not; because, according to Fatima Blanco, these products are still very thorough checksJust like the ones we humans eat. “Obviously, as with human food, there may be isolated cases of product in poor condition or poisoning, but it is precisely because of the exhaustive control that is carried out that it is quickly detected and resolved.”
In Europe, for example, within the framework of the European Commission, there is a project on the quality and safety of feed and food for Europe (QSAFFE in English acronym). In doing so, the goal is to improve the quality of these animal feeds through risk prevention techniques, quality tests, and measures to prevent future problems associated with this problem.
They don’t even deliver what they promise
The BARF diet is often touted as the best option for pets. in terms of nutrition. This hypothesis is supported by the fact that raw meat contains digestive enzymes which increase the bioavailability of many nutrients that can also be lost during cooking.
However, there is not enough scientific evidence that this is the case. Most studies do not find much nutritional value in animals fed this way. In fact, in many cases the opposite is true, and many unbalanced substances in their analytics. But even if there were benefits, they would not outweigh the risks of the zoonoses we face if we feed our animals this way.
The BARF diet poses a public health risk
Perhaps in the past a word zoonosis seemed to us something exotic and unusual (although it was not). However, since COVID-19 entered our lives, we are becoming more aware of all that it entails.
Zoonosis is known as a phenomenon in which a pathogen is transmitted naturally from an animal to a person. May be directly or through intermediaries. For example, in the case of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, there is a lot of evidence that it originated in bats. However, it is believed that there may have been an intermediate species that favored the jump, and it is not clear what this might have been. At first, a pangolin was suspected, but this is not certain.
These zoonoses are often caused Serious food safety violations. And that, of course, includes the raw food diet. But at this point, we could ask ourselves a question. If the BARF diet is for dogs and cats, what do we humans have to do with it? Well, basically everything. Diseases can be transmitted to pets, which in itself is quite serious. But they can also be transmitted to humans, other animals, or simply released into the environment.
“Raw food is a source of pathogens that are neither eliminated by the acidic pH of the digestive system of dogs and cats, nor by freezing,” Blanco warns. “They carry a potential zoonotic hazard that needs to be considered.” In addition, the veterinarian reports that “there are studies confirming the presence of these pathogens in the faeces of these animals, with conclusions antibiotic resistant bacteria“. Hence, it is a public health issue.
When your pets become dangerous to others
As more research into the dangers of the BARF diet continues to be published, many veterinarians are already beginning to take action on this. They can be of two types.
On the one hand, there are clinics that They do not accept dogs or cats that follow this type of diet.. Others don’t go that far, but they have isolation and disinfection protocols for these animals. It’s not for less because we’ve already seen that they pose a zoonotic risk to other dogs and cats or to the people around them.
In fact, this is outside the scope of veterinary clinics. And it is that, while all dog owners must collect their feces from the street, for those who feed their furries on the BARF diet, this takes on a second meaning. “Indeed, the droppings of these animals lie on the street and, if it is not collected, we may already have source of infection“.
There are many reasons to treat our pets like the 21st century pets they are. If they had a choice, they certainly would.
Source: Hiper Textual