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Homemade dog treats clearly aren't fun or healthy for dogs

dog-treatsFrom time to time I like to see what Google thinks a result for a certain dog treat kind of term should be.  I know the system is supposed to be neutral or amoral, but when it pulls up things like Healthy dog treats or Fun dog treats, its either taking the websites word for it or making a moral judgement.

Of course in theory it is doing neither, it is supposedly displaying the closest match that it can find based on a whole bunch of parameters not the least of which is the number of quality links to the site and social media mentions. 

And if everyone is feeding a ton of grain to their dog every year, then of course why should google go into bat for carnivore dogs ?

Read more: Homemade dog treats clearly aren't fun or healthy for dogs

What your dog eats when you are not looking - dog treats ?

dog in dog parkWhat happens in the park stays in the park

Assuming a dog knows what's best for its health can be dangerous.

Dogs are not a lot different from humans and many other animals when it comes to eating things like salt and sugar. And this means that if you add oil, sugar and salt to a block of wood a dog will usually lick it, some will eat it.

While these are some of the most natural "additives" they are often used by dog food manufacturers to fool dogs into eating grains as a food source, with a little meat to reach the bare minimum protein requirements.

Read more: What your dog eats when you are not looking - dog treats ?

The use of dog treats other than for food in Australia

Dogs eating healthy dog treatsA dogs relationship with food is almost unique in the animal kingdom.

There ancestors the wolf were apex hunters (the prime chaser in the forest) and as such they worked at being very good at it all day long.  This was their purpose, to hunt, to eat, to reproduce. In between times they had fun, but often as adults the adult wolves dont play, because it is usually seen as a grab for rank in the pack order and so has to be taken seriously and ends up with major injuries.

I mention all of this, as much of what we know about companion dog behaviour comes from what their immediate ancestors did.

You will know from all the other articles on this site that I am a strong advocate of a dog mainly eating a meat diet. Being the most natural and bio available to their body, but there are many other reasons to get meat into a dog besides just nutrition.

Read more: The use of dog treats other than for food in Australia

Home made dog treats - Why people feed veggies to dogs

home-made-dog-treatsThe aafco standards (American dog food standards) that your dog food must reach before being labelled as dog food only has MINIMUM levels of amino acids (protein), vitamins and minerals, Plus Omega 6.  It PURPOSELY does not tell you how to reach those standards.

Many American dog food manufacturers use loopholes in feeding trial rules to get their product over the finishing line with a bare minimum of meat in the product. This is usually below 30% and as low as 15%.

The problem for dogs is that while on paper they reach the minimum levels for the essential amino acids (those parts of protein that can't be made in the dogs body) - they don't address the bio availability of the amino acids (how easily the dog can use the nutrients.

Read more: Home made dog treats - Why people feed veggies to dogs

Why we now have an aafco dog food standard & the Australian standard

dog_food_standards.Recently I had a query from someone how was interested in getting access to AS5812 (Australian Standard AS 5812-2011 - The Pet Food Industry). The reason that they were interested in this document is that it is an Australian Standard on what you should be feeding your dog.  The shame for the Australian Government is that they charge you $220 via the saiglobal organisation to get this information !

 The Abstract for this document says "Specifies requirements for the production and supply of manufactured food for domesticated dogs and cats. Applies to both domestic and imported products."

"The Standard covers production of pet food from sourcing and receipt of ingredients to storage, processing (including heat treatment), packing, labelling and storage of products in order to assure its safety for pets. It also includes instructions for the uniform application of information provided on labels."

Read more: Why we now have an aafco dog food standard & the Australian standard

What do healthy dog treats look like and smell like?

natural dogs playingRecently we had an email from a customer who didn't like how our healthy and natural dog treats smelt, they claimed various things about the odour but here is the shocking truth.

Most dogs fed on a grain diet (ie 97% of domestic dogs) can have trouble recognising their primary food (meat) as an actual food source. No longer allowed to hunt, no longer given meat on a regular basis, many dogs can even suffer digestion problems when eating real meat for the first time. EVEN THOUGH its is more bio available to the dog than any other food source.

While we sell many blackdog products and many of them are the same size, shape and colour each time, the main difference between them and many dog treats on the market are that they are 80% plus meat composed.  This is the kind of treat that most dog owners seem to prefer, because they live in a MacDonald's world where every parcel of 'food' must look the same and match that in the advert exactly (well most burgers don't but that is another point).

Read more: What do healthy dog treats look like and smell like?

NOT gourmet dog treats, there are plenty on sale on OTHER sites

not gourmet dog treatsUsually a company doesn't like comparing products on other people's sites to real food, but sometimes you have to take exception to the wisdom of Google. (now a money maker, no longer the finder of truth). On the first page of Google Gourmet dog treat searches we find FOUR pictures of DOG TREATS that they claim to be Gourmet.

Gourmet might mean fancy, expensive or even colourful, but the one thing it does not mean is natural or healthy for a dog.

It is true that I sell bulk biscuits on this site, and some people love them for their dogs every day. But our biscuits tend to have real nautral ingredients added to make their flavour. However calling a product GOURMET that is essentially grain based (other than regular dog food) is a massive stretch of the truth.

Maybe its only people who dress their dogs up in doll clothing and never take them for a walk. Make them only socialise with people within four walls of their own house that buy these treats? But I suspect the lure of Google putting these treats up as GOURMET  gives them some remarkable power to fool the average person.

Read more: NOT gourmet dog treats, there are plenty on sale on OTHER sites

What's all the buzz about Fish & shark based dog treats?

Why arent you buying more fish dog treats?

Fish Dog TreatsFor some reason corporations have got everyone who owns a cat hooked on buying fish for them. While some cats might have lived on boats or with fishermen, the majority in the wild, or their ancestors would not have caught and eaten fish because they don't really like water usually.

Fast forward to what dogs eat. If you think the same thing about dogs (and wolves) you might also be right. BUT then again, if you feed your dog regular dog food, full of grain, that is the last thing on earth a dog or wolf would have ever eaten naturally. And most dogs still don't eat grain unless its backed, pulverised, given sugar and salt and sprayed with oil !  So why not feed your dog something very special and animal based?

So why would people bother feeding fish to a dog?

Well from the 'skin allergy' dog foods out there you will find salmon is a very popular ingredient, because it seems to have very low allergen potential with most dogs.

Read more: What's all the buzz about Fish & shark based dog treats?

What is the best long chewing dog treat in Australia?

long Dog Treat ChewsBones are a great chewing tool for many dogs, but not every dog will chew them for a long time, and some dogs don't eat them carefully enough to eat them unsupervised.  Recently there has been a lot of press about raw hide choking dogs and blocking their intestine.

What can you do for a long dog treat chew in Australia?

You firstly need to figure out if you want natural dog chews or fake vegetable compressed sticks.  If you choose natural animal based dog treats then you need to work out if you are buying them just for long chewing or to provide some nutrition.

Read more: What is the best long chewing dog treat in Australia?

Home-made dog treats V the best man made dog food

man made dog foodIf you look at the two tables at the end of this article you will see a stark contrast in the number of ingredients and quality of ingredients.

The main raw ingredients I use are human grade, not left overs, or things that need to be disguised in a biscuit with oil and salt to make it attractive to a dog.

If you feed your dog on a dry or wet man made dog food this is what you should know, and why you need quality MEAT or Meat based dog treats WITH your pellets.

1              Firstly you won't see any PERCENTAGES on a dog food label. This is because they use splitting of terms to make it look like you are getting more meat. 

Read more: Home-made dog treats V the best man made dog food

Why most people prefer our beef pizzle / bully sticks

dogIn truth there is little you can do to damage bully sticks besides over drying or adding other ingredients to it.  And rarely does anyone add ingredients unless its easy or going to make them more money - so Bully sticks are usually 100% natural and sometimes from Australia. However size, hardness and price are important.

Why our Bully sticks/ Beef Pizzle are better

For a long time we were putting up with low weight bully sticks and random supply. Most retailers sell you sticks by number and because they are light, you get very little beef bully stick for your dollar.

This meant that even though our customers loved the sticks we sold, we didn't always have them in stock.  Then the other issue was the relatively high price. When your supplier sells you something much higher than all the other natural products you buy in, then the option is either for you to make no money or to not stock the product. 

We knew there was as better way and we found it.

Read more: Why most people prefer our beef pizzle / bully sticks

Know the tricks (splitting) on dog food labels & how you are being ripped off

dog food label splitting contentsOK, let's assume that you are not a raw feeder, or if you are a raw feeder you use lots of carbs for your dog.  These are personal choices.

However since dogs are still documented as carnivores by many scientific dog journals (not the ones quoted by dog food companies) you should know that the primary ingredient your dog should always get is MEAT. For the meat protein and meat associated fats.

SPLITTING in dog food has been the wide spread industry trick of making consumers think taht they are feeding their dogs a lot of meat in their dog food, but the dog food maker putting very little meat in it. HOW CAN HIS BE TRUE?

The mathematics of Ingredient Splitting & why it is bad for your dog. 

Manufacturers have cleverly found that spitting the primary ingredient such as Corn (30%) into Corn meal (15%) and Corn Flour (15%) can magically make the corn ingredient go from primary ingredient to ingredients 2 and 3. And meat APPEARS to be the most plentiful (even if it is only 18%) of the total can !!

Read more: Know the tricks (splitting) on dog food labels & how you are being ripped off

If you buy dog food, you need to buy healthy dog treats

a healthy happy dogI just saw an ad on TV for hiring people to do gardening and mow their lawns. This used to be something that people in Australia proudly did themselves.

There is the old adage that why do something yourself if you can pay someone less (money is time) than it would take you to do it.

Like house cleaning, mowing lawns and pulling weeds isn't exactly a glamorous or fun task. And when people finish work they really enjoy their down time.

But the problem for dog treats is not people putting their money into more distasteful tasks, its because people are very unaware of how much meat is actually in their dog food.  People inherently feel their dogs should have meat but here are the reasons they don't do anything about what they feed their dogs

Read more: If you buy dog food, you need to buy healthy dog treats

Real dog treat sites are now being hidden by the major search engine 2016

A true healthy dog treat fan dogDog treats online search changes are dramatic

Sometimes when we report changes about search engines its like we are doing a henny penny. But this change is dramatic for the people of Australia and those that buy dog treats online. You will now only see 1 or 2 'organic' companies on the 'first page'. And then they are often large corporates who bought their way into those results too !

The initial cause of this kind of misinformation (search engines putting dodgy treat companies at the top of search results)   is caused by the profit imperative of the search engine companies and can be easily traced back to the IPO them. When the big G's two original idealists owned the company they promised that their searches would be based on integrity. Things like the most informative sites, accurate information and currency of articles matter a lot. NOW They dont.

And in March 2016 we are headed for a very bad innovation as far as real information and quality sites go.

Read more: Real dog treat sites are now being hidden by the major search engine 2016

How to feed dogs healthy dog treats as a meal supplement or replacement

Healthy dog treats Kangaroo Meat BallsThis is very rarely a topic that dog treat makers will discuss, because either their treats are cheap and nasty, or because they don't know.  Dog food makers will not tell you, because it might slice into their profits.

Why replace some dog food with dog treats?

Its the age old thing of rich and powerful multinationals advertising grain  or potato based dog food for you with local vets convincing you that your dog is almost a vegetarian. Which is pretty much a complete lie.

And by replace with healthy dog treats, I mean up to 50% if you want to play it really safe. You have the option of either keep feeding your dog the same old same old bag of grain (who would you like the same cereal for every meal for the rest of your life) or actually giving your dog a dog treat that can act as a replacement/ supplement that improves their health.

Read more: How to feed dogs healthy dog treats as a meal supplement or replacement

Why a treat is dog food, and dog food is actually a treat

shark cartilage powder for your loved one dogThere is a massive divide between what the major dog food companies are calling pet treats and what a real HEALTHY dog treat is for your dog. By definition a treat is  " an event or item that is out of the ordinary and gives great pleasure."

Us humans expect treats to be expensive and full of sugar or at least chocolate. We think that a treat should only be bought seldom to make it special.  We associate food treats with weight gain and often avoid them when dieting. But imagine if we thought of treats as being healthy for us?

Here's a fun fact. YES supermarket treats by the major dog food companies are exactly as the definition of the word treat implies (well most of them except 100% beef liver). Dont give your dog too much and on rare occasions. This is mainly because they have very little benefit above what your dog is already getting in their grain filled dog food concoctions.

Read more: Why a treat is dog food, and dog food is actually a treat

Why shark cartilage or yogurt drops are the perfect valentine gift for your dog!

Valentines day shark cartilageFor anyone really happy on valentine's day, buy a healthy dog treat for your dog. For anyone sad and lonely on valentine's day, buy a healthy dog treat for your dog!

How shark cartilage and yogurt drops are healthy for dogs

.. and why did I choose these two dog treats to focus on for valentine's day?

Well because they are both very popular treats and both at the extreme ends of the healthy spectrum for most people.

People have been discovering and re-discovering shark cartilage for the last 20 years for their dogs. Most people wait until their dog has a crippling arthritis ailments before buying them shark cartilage sticks or powder, but some also realise that its calcium, chew-ability and omega 3 is great for a dog of any age.

Read more: Why shark cartilage or yogurt drops are the perfect valentine gift for your dog!

The latest Premium dog foods in the US are still low on meat

Premium dog food dog treats dogJust like the "innovations" of the luxury car makers like Mercedes Benz and BMW have shown, technology eventually filters down to the masses. And so it is with some interest and feigned alarm that I report that even America is starting to wake up to the fact that dogs need meat in their diet.

Why the 'eat like your owner' US dog food strategies are nutritionally bankrupt.

While The new US dog food surge in Premium pet food is heartening, it is of course not any more nutritionally sound that regular dog food.

The US Premium dog food market has now reached $10 billion USD in America nearly half of the total market of $23 B USD.

Read more: The latest Premium dog foods in the US are still low on meat

A little story about gourmet dog treats and what competitors hide from you

gourmet dog treatsWhen you shop for yourself you are probably delighted to find gourmet human treats on special. For dinner parties we have horderves, fine wine, expensive foreign cheese.  Any idea what all of these things have in common besides funny names and sometimes being hard to find?  Perhaps they are very rich and we shouldn't eat too much of them either.

The number one thing is that they are expensive right?

We are conditioned to thinking that gourmet means expensive, and we willing pay money well over the odds, to gain the emotional bond with our food, to feel special.

But we are proud to purchase gourmet foods,  because they make us feel good and taste yummy right? Their health value is a very secondary concern.

Read more: A little story about gourmet dog treats and what competitors hide from you

A little story about HEALTHY dog treats and what competitors hide from you

healthy dogHumans often don't eat a lot of truly healthy food as their staple diet. Much of the over manufactured, over processed, non raw foods are rarely   'healthy' for us.  Rarely are they in any kind of quantity, and sometimes they go off in a day or so.

But we are proud to purchase Healthy food, because its supposed to make us fit and happy, even if it tastes ordinary ...

What do most people expect healthy human food to taste like, when we haven't regularly eaten it. We probably think of non tasty wheat grass concoctions. Things we are forced to eat in the attempt to lose weight. That is why most things healthy are expected not to taste good to us humans, right?

Read more: A little story about HEALTHY dog treats and what competitors hide from you

Chicken Strips Healthy Dog treats eating guide, By Archie dog

Archie dog eats 100% chicken dog treatsThe curious case of Chicken dog treats in Australia.

If you buy chicken dog treats from the supermarket, chances are that you are going to get little more than you get in dog food, around 30%.

In the blackdog range of dog treats I sell they have a base level of 80% chicken meat in most of their dog treats except for the chicken breast fillet which is  virtually 100% (has some soy and vitamins added for nutritional value).

The point about chicken is that its one of the most universally used meats in dog food, because its cheap and available. Even if you buy beef and kangaroo mixed treats (not 100% jerkys etc). you are most likely going to get some chicken meat in the mix.

Read more: Chicken Strips Healthy Dog treats eating guide, By Archie dog

Ling Fish Skins Healthy Dog treats eating guide

Archie eating ling fish skinsLing fish skins and the incredible chewing dog treat.

Truth be known, fish skins are one of the fastest growing dog treats around but one of the lesser known.  Their function is to basically provide long chewing time, and not be a choking hazard.

In the included clip we have a border collie and a spoodle each doing their best to devour them, but as you will see they make little progress on them. That is the whole point !

The reason why fish skins are taking over from rawhide and pigskins is several fold.  Rawhide has been shown to be little more than second grade leather, with little nutritional value and a potential intestine blocking and choking hazard. It is very far removed from being called natural.  A lot of dogs love pig products, particularly pigs ears, but many owners are realising that these are moderately high in fat and some dogs can plough through quite a few in a short time.

Read more: Ling Fish Skins Healthy Dog treats eating guide

Tuna Jerky Healthy Dog treats eating guide, By Archie dog

Archie eating tuna jerky dog treats AustraliaI sell healthy meat based Dog treats. That is my mission, based on the best health outcomes for dogs. That is why I also sell the Blackdog Range which as a base has 80% meat dog treats in its range.

Very rarely can I safely push the envelope on choosing one of their treats over another but I have to say out of all the dog treats I stock, Tuna Jerky which I get from a local Melbourne Supplier and brand myself beats almost everything for nutrition and organic value other than Kangaroo meat products.

In fact at home my dog is on a raw meat offal and bones diet, and the main dog treats I will regularly give him at night time are either 100% roo based like tendons or jerky's or the outstanding 100% Tuna Jerky we stock.

Read more: Tuna Jerky Healthy Dog treats eating guide, By Archie dog

Blackdog dog treats, why they are healthy and why you should buy from our store

Blackdog Chicken Crinkles dog treatI have noticed lately that some super stores are dumping Blackdog treats, dirt cheap. These might be old stock, but more often than not, they are the ONE treat out of the entire range that they discount to near cost to put as a Google advert when you search for dog treats.

Some large PET corporations will sell everything under the sun, stuff that I would never recommend you use for a pet or that I would ever sell. THAT is one of the big differences between my store and a corporation.

Why we sell blackdog dog treats and why we are better

Read more: Blackdog dog treats, why they are healthy and why you should buy from our store

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