Category: Business

Possible dog food contamination with Salmonella bacteria

This dog food recall was issued on Monday.

The U.S. FDA has announced Smokehouse Pet Products of Sun Valley, CA, is expanding its recall of its “Beefy Munchies” and “Beefy Bites” dog treats due to contamination with Salmonella bacteria.

To learn which products are affected, please visit the following link:

FDA Expands Nationwide Beefy Munchies Dog Treats Recall

Please share the news of this alert with other pet owners.

Mike Sagman, Editor
The Dog Food Advisor

P.S. Not already on our dog food recall notification list yet? Sign up to get critical dog food recall alerts sent to you by email. There’s no cost for this service.

If one follows that link then you come to these details:

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FDA Expands Nationwide Beefy Munchies Dog Treats Recall

February 19, 2018 — The FDA has announced that Smokehouse Pet Products, Inc. of Sun Valley, CA is recalling all sizes and package types of dog treats labeled as “Beefy Munchies” because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

 

About the Recall

“Beefy Munchies” was distributed nationwide through distributors selling to various retailers.

The product comes in individual bags, resealable bags and plastic tubs.

The plastic tub will be labeled “Beefy Bites”.

All sizes and packaging types will include a UPC code, lot number, and a best used by date of stamped on the back.

The current recall is expanded to include all “Beefy Munchies”.

No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this problem.

What Caused the Recall

The potential for contamination was noted after routine sampling and testing by the Colorado Department of Agriculture revealed the presence of Salmonella in two 4-oz packages of “Beefy Munchies”.

About Salmonella

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever.

Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms.

Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting.

Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain.

Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans.

If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

What to Do?

Any consumers who have purchased “Beefy Munchies” should discontinue use of the product and may return the unused portion to the place of purchase for a full refund.

Consumers with questions may contact Smokehouse Pet Products, Inc. at 877-699-7387, Monday through Friday 7 AM to 3:30 PM PT.

U.S. citizens can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in your area.

Or go to http://www.fda.gov/petfoodcomplaints.

Canadians can report any health or safety incidents related to the use of this product by filling out the Consumer Product Incident Report Form.

Get Dog Food Recall Alerts by Email

Get free dog food recall alerts sent to you by email. Subscribe to The Dog Food Advisor’s emergency recall notification system.

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I do hope that no-one out there is affected by this recall!

Please share this with any other dog lovers that you are in contact with.

 

Lateral thinking

In debt to Edward de Bono.

One of the great differences between us humans and our beloved dogs is that frequently we think too much! But it’s worse than that. We think too much and get caught up in some spiral from which we can’t think ourselves back out. Perhaps that can be likened to a dog worrying away at something that the dog thinks is being overlooked by it’s human friend, or over-licking a wound or such.

A very quick web search will bring up the background information on Dr. de Bono who was responsible for overturning the way we think. It was de Bono who attended an IBM Office Products management course that I was attending, far too many moons ago, when I was promoted from being a salesman to the first rung of the management ladder; the position of Marketing Manager. It was during de Bono’s talk that I first learned of lateral thinking and what de Bono called the “PO” moment.

Just watch the first minute of this talk to get an appreciation of what the PO moment is. Seriously, the video starts with Simon Middleton defining a PO moment. It’s relevant to the rest of this post.

As you all know Jean has Parkinson’s Disease (PD). We have come to understand that PD affects different people in different ways, albeit there are some aspects that many PD sufferers share.

Take this symptom as described on the APDA website:

Many individuals report difficulties in multitasking and organizing daily activities.

In recent weeks I noticed I was becoming frustrated because although I was suggesting to Jeannie a number of what I thought were pleasant things to do in and around our property they weren’t being done.

As much as I tried to say to myself to chill out, this is all down to Jean’s PD, I couldn’t push out of sight the growing frustration that my help was being rejected, and I know I have a problem dealing with rejection! I really didn’t want my frustration to build up to anger.

Eventually, one morning last week after I came back to the bedroom from having fed the horses and the deer I blurted out, rather clumsily I admit, this frustration that was close to becoming a real annoyance.

At first Jean was upset by what I said, understandably so, but then we settled down to examining each suggestion of mine and where I was coming from. Then the conversation became very productive and in a moment of creative thinking I suggested what turned out to be a ‘PO’ moment. In other words, we had both agreed that while we acknowledged the fact that Jean was not motivated to do the things I was suggesting nonetheless it was important that we choose another day and time to discuss how I should remind Jean of these ‘overlooked’ suggestions and, more importantly, how it could be done in a loving and constructive manner.

It was a fascinating outcome and I immediately jumped out of bed, went to my office room next to the bedroom, grabbed a new, unused notebook and came back to the bedroom.

“Jean, let’s write this down in the book as a reminder of something we need to return to and resolve in a creative way! Let’s call these reminders Pharaoh moments!”

Jean very happily agreed!

I then explained to Jean that this felt very much like one of de Bono’s PO moments and calling it a Pharaoh moment was a beautiful way of remembering our wonderful dog.

It was beyond doubt an example of Jean and me thinking laterally.

So thank you, dear Edward, your legacy still endures.

I will close today’s post by inviting you to watch either or both of these talks by de Bono.

The first is a little over 4 minutes long.

Or a longer video that is still highly recommended:

Published on 22 Oct 2015

Edward de Bono is the originator of the concept of Lateral Thinking, which is now a firm entry in the Oxford English Dictionary. Dr de Bono was born in Malta. As a well-established academic, de Bono was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford and holds an MA in psychology and physiology from Oxford. He is a Professor at many leading institutions around the world. He is an author of many best-selling books, and is known as the world’s leading authority on thinking.
I write this post as a very happy man who has lived the value and benefits of not bottling up one’s feelings!

Here’s a clutch of dog food recalls!

Seemed best to lump them all together.

Because since the beginning of February there have been four (now five as of yesterday!) dog food recalls notified to subscribed owners. Although I have copied and pasted product pictures if any of these products are relevant to you then please do follow the link to the Dog Food Recall page offering more details!

On the 9th February this was released:

Smokehouse Pet Products of Sun Valley, CA, is recalling a specific lot of its “Beefy Munchies” dog treats due to potential contamination with Salmonella bacteria.

If you go to this link you can see pictures of the product package and other details.

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Then on the same day another notification was issued:

Raws for Paws of Minneapolis, MN, is recalling specific lots of its raw frozen dog food due to possible contamination with Salmonella bacteria.

Once again, a link was offered that provided full information.

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A day later, on the 10th February, out came the third alert:

Redbarn Pet Products LLC of Long Beach, CA, is recalling a specific lot of its “Redbarn Naturals Bully Sticks” due to potential contamination with Salmonella bacteria.

Including the link to more details.

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The last alert was received on the 12th February.

Darwin’s Natural Pet Products of Tukwila, WA, is recalling specific lots of its Darwin’s ZooLogics raw frozen dog food due to possible contamination with Salmonella bacteria.

With the link to more details provided as per usual.

Wonder if there will be more alerts before the month is out! (Written on the afternoon of the 14th.)

Yes!!

The following came in yesterday afternoon:

J. M. Smucker has announced it is voluntarily withdrawing multiple dog food brands due to the presence of the drug pentobarbital.

To learn which products are affected, please visit the following link:

Smucker Withdraws Multiple Dog Food Brands

Please share the news of this alert with other pet owners.

That link contains the following brand image:

and this table:

The table is reproduced from an email sent by Walmart to its affected customers.

Please share this information as best you can.  Only by acting together can we prevent every single dog from eating something potentially harmful.

The power of great nutrition.

Talk about having one’s eyes fully opened! Hopefully!

On the 16th I published a post under the title of The Power of Good Food.

It primarily featured a short video from the home page of Colin Potter’s Fight Parkinson’s website. That video explained how a strict regime of the right food and supported by supplements had made an incredible difference to his health, effectively putting his PD into remission.

Or in Colin’s words:

I am Colin Potter and I have a Parkinson’s diagnosis.

Only there’s one difference between me and virtually all other people with Parkinson’s

I no longer suffer from its symptoms. I don’t take conventional medications.
You’d hardly know I had Parkinson’s.
How is this possible?

I’m not a doctor, I’m just an ordinary bloke diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2011 who just didn’t like what he was being told by his doctors; that his condition was incurable and his health would go into permanent decline.
So, I started my own research, and found thousands of authoritative research studies that:

  • Showed that Parkinson’s mostly had its origins in our lifestyle and environment
  • Revealed the possible, specific causes behind Parkinson’s
  • Promoted the actions I could take to fix the problem
  • Allowed me to cease levodopa medication

I then made the necessary changes to my lifestyle and diet and here I am, two+ years later, healthy and recovered.

I know many of you will find it hard to dedicate a measurable amount of ‘viewing’ time to this post but that doesn’t stop me from recommending a subsequent video.

Namely, a longer (32 minutes) interview of Colin Potter that really explains his transformation

There’s even more to share with you but Jeannie and I have made a fundamental decision.  That is that before we go any further it is only right that we seek the views of a local nutritionist in nearby Grants Pass.

We need to be certain that the major changes that we are planning in terms of diet and supplement intake are supported by local, qualified persons.

We will share those findings with you very soon.

But it does cross my mind that the following should be included in this post.

We do not offer advice and nothing on any website, email or any other communication is intended to treat, diagnose, prevent or cure any disease. It is not a substitute for consulting your doctor. You should consult a doctor for diagnosis of conditions, before beginning any diet, exercise or supplementation or if you suspect you have any health issue. You should not stop medication without consulting your doctor.

No room for being wrong!

Getting to the truth of what is or is not good for our dogs.

As many will understand so very often I am acting more as a messenger than an authoritative source in this place. It is very difficult for me, almost impossible indeed, for me to verify the validity of what is posted here.

On January 11th, I published a guest post from Kathreen Miller. Her article was called Is Organic Food Really Good For Your Dog To Eat?

Yesterday, local good friend and neighbour, Jim Goodbrod, sent me an email pointing out a number of weaknesses in Kathreen’s article and giving me permission to republish what he wrote as a post on Learning from Dogs.

Jim is an experienced Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) and has frequently advised us, both professionally and informally, about our own dogs and cats. We trust him fully. Jim attends a couple of local vet clinics including Lincoln Road Veterinary Clinic in Grants Pass to where we take our pets when required.

Dr. Jim seeing a patient at Lincoln Road Vet.

Here is Jim’s update published with his kind permission and unchanged by me apart from some minor formatting amendments including italicising some phrases.

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Hey Paul …

Regarding your post of 1-11-18, a guest post by Kathreen Miller concerning canine diet, I feel the need (justified or not) to clarify a few points. She seems to be a big proponent of “organic diets” and lest your readers be misled, I think we need to define what is meant by “organic”.

The legal definition of “organic” is codified by the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) in 7 CFR 205. Pet foods and pet treats must comply with these regulations or they may not legally use the word “organic” on the label. If you read these regulations, you will find that “organic” refers only to the handling and processing of ingredients and products.

These regulations cover: ingredient sourcing, ingredient handling, manufacturing, and labeling & certification of products wanting to use the word “organic” in their labeling.

However, these rules are not considered by NOP as a means to ensure safer, healthier, or more nutritious foods. In fact, there is no regulatory distinction in the tolerable levels of pesticides, drugs, or other residues allowed in organic vs conventional products (even though lower residues may in fact be a result).

Rather, the “organic” label is viewed as a confirmation of the organic production process, and the purchaser is left to his or her own determination as to whether the costs merit the perceived benefits. The bottom line is that “organic” refers to the processing of a product, and makes no guarantees as to the quality or digestibility of ingredients, safety, nutritional value or health benefits of the product.

A savvy pet owner, in order to ensure her dog’s optimal nutritional health, would be better advised to follow guidelines outlined by WSAVA or AAHA (or other reputable source) rather than to reflexively reach for the dog food that says “organic” on the label. The “organic” label does not necessarily mean a diet is good or bad, but it has nothing to do with the nutritional adequacy of the diet and hence your dog’s health.

Another point: Kathreen seems to buy into the popular myth that plant-based ingredients (like corn) are poorly digested fillers that provide little nutritional value and can cause allergies. Corn provides a good source of carbohydrates, essential amino acids, protein, and essential fatty acids in the diets of dogs and cats. It is highly digestible and is not a common cause of allergies. It is actually a very good nutrient as an ingredient in pet food.

My last point is regarding the product “Pet Bounce” that Kathreen endorses as a treatment for arthritic pain in dogs. This product is labelled as homeopathic and as such is nothing more than a placebo.

It has been proven over and over and over again that homeopathic remedies are nothing but water and perform no better than placebos in numerous clinical trials. Reading the list of ingredients, one can see that it contains:

  • 1) Belladonna 6X
  • 2)Caulphyllum 6C
  • 3) Colchicum autumnale 200C
  • 4) Apis mellifica 30C
  • 5) Rhus toxicodendron 200C
  • 6) Ruta graveolens 6X.

Anyone familiar with homeopathic nomenclature knows that, for example, the Apis mellifica 30C designation means that this particular herb is diluted in water 1 to  or   (that’s 1 followed by 60 zeroes!).

To put it into perspective, that’s equivalent to 1 molecule of this substance in a sphere of water 90 million miles in diameter (approximately the distance of the earth to the sun). That’s a 30C dilution.

At a 200C dilution, the treating substance is diluted more than the total number of atoms in the known universe!

Regardless of any medicinal properties these herbs may have, they are so fantastically diluted that there is not one molecule present in the final solution.

I defy any reasonable person to tell me that this so-called remedy is effective to treat anything and consists of anything more than a water placebo.

My problem with this kind of snake oil is that well-meaning pet owners waste their money (~$50.00 per bottle!) on this useless product, believing all the hype and thinking that they are improving the quality of their dog’s life, meanwhile squandering the opportunity to actually help their dog with an effective and evidence-based treatment.

Kathreen seems to be a nice and well-intentioned woman, but I don’t know what qualifies her as a “pet health expert”, other than her own opinion. According to her profile (from your blog) she lives in Chicago with her daughter and dog “Buddy” and listens to music, watches TV, and travels. That’s it? Nothing more??

Again, your readers, Paul, would be well advised to visit professional veterinary nutrition websites (and there are dozens of them) for their veterinary nutritional information.
Below are a couple good places to start:
http://www.wsava.org/sites/default/files/Nutrition%20on%20the%20Internet%20dogs.pdf

http://www.wsava.org/sites/default/files/Recommendations%20on%20Selecting%20Pet%20Foods.pdf

Regards, Jim

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I know you will join me in thanking Jim for spending the time in writing this update.

Diet is so crucial to good health.

Not only for us but for our wonderful dogs.

Sometime over the next few days I will write a post about an amazing connection that Jean made, via Richard in England, with Colin Potter. He is the founder of the site Fight Parkinson’s.

It is mentioned as an introduction to today’s post because Colin stresses the critical importance of the right diet for us humans.

But now I want to go straight to a guest post sent to me by Kathreen Miller on the topic of diet for our dogs.

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Is Organic Food Really Good For Your Dog To Eat?

by Kathreen Miller

If you are searching for information related to organic food for dogs, then you’re probably a firm believer in animal rights and how food affects their health. . Maybe you are also considering how your dog will follow a vegan diet. Or how an organic diet can help improve your pet’s health?

You must understand that dogs require protein-rich foods. Therefore, you should look for balanced and high-quality food so that your pet’s health is not deteriorated. A low intake of protein in your pet could result in anemia which again causes joint pain in dogs.

Pet Bounce is one of the best dog pain medications to allefviate the joint pain in pet dogs.

Therefore, read this article to get information about organic food for a dog and how to make it a part of their regular diet. You might have some questions in your mind. You might think how can you make your dog eat organic food? Is it good for dogs? Before you start such kind of diet for your pet you need to do some research.

Consult a veterinary doctor and speak to him/her about the deficiency and advantage of an organic diet. You need to understand that the stomach of dogs is fragile. An instant change in the diet of a dog makes them suffer from diarrhea or bad breath. The change of diet in your dog should be slow.

If you are starting with organic food for your pet, then initially you need to give them organic food once a week. This will make your dog habitual and accustomed to organic food.

During this time period, you need to ensure that your dog gets a mix of normal as well as organic diet. Then after a considerable period of time, slowly increase the organic food proportion, and finally making it one hundred percent.
Besides, if you are considering about giving your dog the homemade diet then you must know which vegetables and fruits aren’t consumed by your dog. This is of utmost importance as a few vegetables can be toxic to your dog’s digestion. Visit a professional canine nutritionist to receive expert guidance. Also take your dog for health checkups.

This is to make sure that your dog will eat their new food and does not suffer from any diseases.

Why is Organic Food Important for Your Dog?

It is correct, that organic food for dogs is created with natural methods and does not contain any type of additives, preservatives, and artificial colorants. Also, the organic food should be grown in a completely natural manner. But remember, that all organic food brands won’t be entirely free from the preservatives.

Is Organic food Good for Dog’s Health?

As long as you obey the advice of your veterinary doctor, organic food is very good for the health of your dog. If you satisfy the requirements of your dogs, and their health is good, then we can have the idea that organic diet is good for the dogs. There are many types of organic foods. But what makes them bad or good is the range to which they satisfy the animal requirements for the nutrients.

Also, ensure that dogs must get a regular and high intake of protein and they never eat the excess quantity of corn. Since for dogs, corns are not easy to digest.

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I am delighted to add a little about Kathreen’s background.

 Kathreen Miller is a pet health expert. She lives in Chicago with her daughter and a dog named “Buddy”. She regularly contributes her write ups to pet health related websites and blogs. In her Free time, she loves listening to music, watching TV and traveling.

On her Pet Bounce site there is an informative article about joint pain in dogs.

Thanks Kathreen for composing this guest post.

I have taken the liberty of grabbing a copy of one of the photos from the Pet Bounce site.

We must do all we can to keep our dogs fit and healthy for as many years as possible!

Consuming the living planet.

The eating habits of us humans have to change!

Funny how things go!

For just two days ago I published a post under the heading of Meat is Heat. It featured an essay by Michael Greger. He of the website NutritionFacts.org. That essay promoted the message:

What we eat may have more of an impact on global warming than what we drive.

Just cutting out animal protein intake one day of the week could have a powerful effect. Meatless Mondays alone could beat out a whole week of working from home and not commuting.

Many of you read that post.

On the same day that I published that post, George Monbiot published an article in The Guardian newspaper that offered the same message, albeit coming at it from a different place but nonetheless just as critically important.

Here it is republished with Mr. Monbiot’s very kind permission.

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We Can’t Keep Eating Like This

This is the question everyone should be attending to – where is the food going to come from?

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 11th December 2017

Brexit; the crushing of democracy by billionaires; the next financial crash; a rogue US president: none of them keeps me awake at night. This is not because I don’t care – I care very much. It’s only because I have a bigger question on my mind. Where is the food going to come from?

By mid-century there will be two or three billion more people on Earth. Any one of the issues I am about to list could help precipitate mass starvation. And this is before you consider how they might interact.

The trouble begins where everything begins: with soil. The UN’s famous projection that, at current rates of soil loss, the world has 60 years of harvests left, appears to be supported by a new set of figures. Partly as a result of soil degradation, yields are already declining on 20% of the world’s croplands.

Now consider water loss. In places such as the North China Plain, the central United States, California and north-western India – among the world’s critical growing regions – levels of the groundwater used to irrigate crops are already reaching crisis point. Water in the Upper Ganges aquifer, for example, is being withdrawn at 50 times its recharge rate. But, to keep pace with food demand, farmers in South Asia expect to use between 80 and 200% more water by 2050. Where will it come from?

The next constraint is temperature. One study suggests that, all else being equal, with each degree Celsius of warming the global yield of rice drops by 3%, wheat by 6% and maize by 7%. This could be optimistic. Research published in the journal Agricultural & Environmental Letters finds that 4°C of warming in the US Corn Belt could reduce maize yields by between 84 and 100%.

The reason is that high temperatures at night disrupt the pollination process. But this describes just one component of the likely pollination crisis. Insectageddon, caused by the global deployment of scarcely-tested pesticides, will account for the rest. Already, in some parts of the world, workers are now pollinating plants by hand. But that’s viable only for the most expensive crops.

Then there are the structural factors. Because they tend to use more labour, grow a wider range of crops and work the land more carefully, small farmers, as a rule, grow more food per hectare than large ones. In the poorer regions of the world, people with less than 5 hectares own 30% of the farmland but produce 70% of the food. Since 2000, an area of fertile ground roughly twice the size of the United Kingdom has been seized by land grabbers and consolidated into large farms, generally growing crops for export rather than the food needed by the poor.

While these multiple disasters unfold on land, the seas are being sieved of everything but plastic. Despite a massive increase in effort (bigger boats, bigger engines, more gear), the worldwide fish catch is declining by roughly 1% a year, as populations collapse. The global land grab is mirrored by a global seagrab: small fishers are displaced by big corporations, exporting fish to those who need it less but pay more. Around 3 billion people depend to a large extent on fish and shellfish protein. Where will it come from?

All this would be hard enough. But as people’s incomes increase, their diet tends to shift from plant protein to animal protein. World meat production has quadrupled in 50 years, but global average consumption is still only half that of the UK – where we eat roughly our bodyweight in meat every year – and just over a third of the US level. Because of the way we eat, the UK’s farmland footprint (the land required to meet our demand) is 2.4 times the size of its agricultural area. If everyone aspires to this diet, how do we accommodate it?

The profligacy of livestock farming is astonishing. Already, 36% of the calories grown in the form of grain and pulses – and 53% of the protein – are used to feed farm animals. Two-thirds of this food is lost in conversion from plant to animal. A graph produced last week by Our World in Data suggests that, on average, you need 0.01m2 of land to produce a gram of protein from beans or peas, but 1m2 to produce it from beef cattle or sheep: a difference of 100-fold.

It’s true that much of the grazing land occupied by cattle and sheep cannot be used to grow crops. But it would otherwise have sustained wildlife and ecosystems. Instead, marshes are drained, trees are felled and their seedlings grazed out, predators are exterminated, wild herbivores fenced out and other lifeforms gradually erased as grazing systems intensify. Astonishing places – such as the rainforests of Madagascar and Brazil – are laid waste to make room for yet more cattle.

Because there is not enough land to meet both need and greed, a global transition to eating animals means snatching food from the mouths of the poor. It also means the ecological cleansing of almost every corner of the planet.

The shift in diets would be impossible to sustain even if there were no growth in the human population. But the greater the number of people, the greater the hunger meat eating will cause. From a baseline of 2010, the UN expects meat consumption to rise by 70% by 2030 (this is three times the rate of human population growth). Partly as a result, the global demand for crops could double (from the 2005 baseline) by 2050. The land required to grow them does not exist.

When I say this keeps me up at night, I mean it. I am plagued by visions of starving people seeking to escape from grey wastes, being beaten back by armed police. I see the last rich ecosystems snuffed out, the last of the global megafauna – lions, elephants, whales and tuna – vanishing. And when I wake, I cannot assure myself that it was just a nightmare.

Other people have different dreams: the fantasy of a feeding frenzy that need never end, the fairytale of reconciling continued economic growth with a living world. If humankind spirals into societal collapse, these dreams will be the cause.

There are no easy answers, but the crucial change is a shift from an animal to a plant-based diet. All else being equal, stopping both meat production and the use of farmland to grow biofuels could provide enough calories for another 4 billion people and double the protein available for human consumption. Artificial meat will help: one paper suggests it reduces water use by at least 82% and land use by 99%.

The next Green Revolution will not be like the last one. It will rely not on flogging the land to death, but on reconsidering how we use it and why. Can we do this, or do we – the richer people now consuming the living planet – find mass death easier to contemplate than changing our diet?

http://www.monbiot.com

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As many of you know Jeannie and I changed our diet to a vegan diet some four weeks ago. It was done more for personal health reasons than from an awareness of the difference that it made to the future of the planet. But over the last few weeks we have had our eyes opened to the broader benefits of not eating meat. George Monbiot spells out the urgency of change for all of us, especially the richer people in the richer countries.

Am I hopeful that there will be a mass awareness of the need to change? I truly just don’t know. I will close be repeating Mr. Monbiot’s closing sentence.

Can we do this, or do we – the richer people now consuming the living planet – find mass death easier to contemplate than changing our diet?

Interesting times!

And more care required

Yet another dog food alert.

Reminds me of that wonderful quip about London buses. The one about waiting for ages for a bus and then two come more-or-less together!

For it was just twelve days ago that I republished a dog food alert concerning bone treats; or as the FDA described it:

The FDA reports it has received about 68 reports of pet illnesses related to “bone treats”.

Bone treats differ from regular uncooked butcher-type bones because they’re processed and packaged for sale as “dog treats”.

Then just early last Saturday there was an email that warned:

Darwin’s Natural Pet Products of Tukwila, Washington, has notified its customers that it is recalling 2 lots of its Natural Selections raw dog food products because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella bacteria.

To learn which products are affected, please visit the following link:

Darwin’s Dog Food Recall of December 2017

Please be sure to share the news of this alert with other pet owners.

Mike Sagman, Editor
The Dog Food Advisor

Here are the full details of that alert.

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Darwin’s Dog Food Recall of December 2017

December 8, 2017 — Darwin’s Natural Pet Products of Tukwila, Washington, has notified distributors that it is recalling select lots of its Darwin’s Natural Selections dog food due to possible contamination with Salmonella bacteria.

What’s Recalled?

The product was shipped to distributors between September and early October 2017.

The affected product includes the following:

  • Natural Selections Turkey Meals for Dogs
    Net wt 2 lbs
    Lot #39937
    Manufacture date 08/24/17
  • Natural Selections Duck Meals for Dogs
    Net wt 2 lbs
    Lot #40487
    Manufacture date 09/29/17

Why Is It Recalled?

Through testing, the company determined that the products listed above, have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

About Salmonella

Salmonella is a bacterial organism that can cause serious and sometimes life-threatening infections in people, particularly young children, frail or elderly people, and those with weakened immune systems.

There is risk to humans from handling contaminated products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the product or any surfaces exposed to these products.

Some healthy individuals who are infected may experience fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain.

In rare circumstances, infections can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe or chronic illness.

According to the FDA, it is uncommon for healthy dogs to become sick from Salmonella.

However, dogs with weakened immune systems (such as puppies or older dogs) have a higher risk of becoming sick.

Pets with infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting.

Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain.

Further information about Salmonella can be found on the Food and Drug Administration website.

Message from the Company

In an email message to distributors, Darwin’s president, Gary Tashjian writes…

We have not received any reports from customers regarding these meals, and are taking these steps out of an abundance of caution.

However, if your pet has consumed the recalled product and has any of the above symptoms, please contact your veterinarian if they persist.

We are recommending that you inspect your inventory of Darwin’s meals to determine if you have any left from the lot listed above.

If any of the above product is still in your inventory, please take the following steps:

Write down the lot number, date/time of manufacture and quantity of any product from the above lot remaining in your inventory.

Dispose of the product by placing it in a plastic bag, then placing the bag in the trash in a secure manner.

Contact us at productsafety@darwinspet.com to confirm that you have taken the above steps and to arrange for replacement of any unused product.

Please note the following:

Your name and address (or customer number)

The date and time of manufacture and quantity of food from this lot that you have remaining in your inventory

Confirmation that you have disposed of it.

We anticipate that some of our customers will have questions or concerns regarding this matter.

We welcome the opportunity to talk with you about it.

Toward that end, we have set up a special toll-free number for you to call: 866-832-8319 (Monday through Friday from 6 AM to 6 PM and Saturday 7 AM to 3 PM Pacific Time).

Please note that we may not be able to talk with each of you at once, so we do ask that you be patient, particularly if your issue is not of an urgent nature.

We regret any concern and/or inconvenience that this causes you.

We are taking steps to reduce the opportunity for this to occur again.

What to Do

U.S. citizens can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in your area.

Or go to http://www.fda.gov/petfoodcomplaints.

Canadians can report any health or safety incidents related to the use of this product by filling out the Consumer Product Incident Report Form.

Get Dog Food Recall Alerts by Email

Get free dog food recall alerts sent to you by email. Subscribe to The Dog Food Advisor’s emergency recall notification system.FDA

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As always, please share this with other dog lovers.

It’s holiday time again

For our beloved dogs!

It’s a rare week when I don’t receive an email from a person representing an organisation that would like a mention here. That’s how it was a couple of weeks ago. In to my inbox came:

Hi Paul,

I hope this finds you well! My name is Sam and I’m a Community Marketing Manager at Rover.com–the nation’s largest online network of pet sitters.

While checking out your website, I was really taken by the DIY content and all of your fun and creative ideas. At Rover, we like to get creative too with everything from making your own dog treats, to celebrating custom dog houses.

It seems that your audience would like to learn more about DIY ideas for their dogs–affordable, adorable, and creative! Please let me know if you’re interested in getting some free DIY content from Rover. I look forward to hearing from you!

All the best,

Sam

I responded along the lines of not really wanting to be seen supporting this or that company when I had no experience or knowledge of what they were selling. Sam was very sensitive to that position and we agreed on the following guest post format. In other words, I was happy to allow the link to Rover.com in return for what I thought was a guest post that would be helpful to many readers.

Let me know, dear reader, if this is acceptable to you or whether you would prefer no ‘commercial’ contributions at all in this place.

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DIY Holiday Gifts for your Pup

by Tracy Vicory-Rosenquest

The holidays are just around the corner, and there’s no need to go broke this year. If you love to spoil everyone in the house including your pups this season, consider a few DIY projects so you can celebrate without breaking the bank! Whether you’ve got lots of time to create a gift or just a few hours, here are a few ideas to get the creative juices flowing…

Fleece for Peace & Winter Gear

It’s time to make peace with winter and snuggle in for the season. Check out these winter gear doggie gift ideas:

  • What better way to get cozy than with fleece?! Grab a sewing pattern for a doggie jacket and roll out the fleece! Pick out your favorite holiday fleece pattern and get your dog fancy for holiday pictures.
  • Buy a little extra fleece and measure out your dog’s bed. Make a holiday duvet cover or throw blanket for their naps this winter.
  • More into knitting? Grab some wool or alpaca yarn for a doggie scarf or sweater. Alpaca is super warm and hypoallergenic if your dog gets itchy with wool.
  • If you’ve got a small dog, check out the baby clothing section for winter attire. You should find a few flannels onsies that will fit!

Personalize and Seasonalize your Doggie Decor

There’s nothing sweeter than a little doggie decorating this time of year. Consider these seasonal gifts for your pup:

  • Search your local craft store for a simple screen printing kit and go crazy. Screen print your holiday photo on the canvas bag you keep doggie toys in or create a seasonal design to screen print on patches of fabric for a quilted doggie blanket.
  • Embroider it! Get out your needle and thread for an embroidery project. Pick out a new towel that you toss in the back of the car for dog park adventures and stitch your dog’s name on it.
  • Create a seasonal leash cover (or collar cover) by sewing a few strands of holiday fabric inside out. Flip the fabric to the right side and iron on letters to spell out your dog’s favorite nickname! Then, thread your leash through the fabric for your next winter walk.
  • If you love holiday baking, get out the flour, oats, and peanut butter to bake homemade dog treats! There are tons of great recipes online–or just buy a pack of dog treats and mix up a dog-friendly frosting. In a small bowl, combine 1 cup of tapioca starch and ¾ cup of honey (or maple). Let it thicken in the fridge and then frost your dog treats! If your dog won’t go nuts, tie 12 treats to the tree like ornaments and celebrate the 12 days of Christmas with a doggie reward each day!

We hope you’ll enjoy one of these fun DIY projects this year. There’s nothing better than a happy pup during your holiday festivities!

More about Tracy. Tracy Vicory-Rosenquest is a Rover.com community member. Rover is the nation’s largest network of 5-star pet sitters and dog walkers.

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So good people, was this useful for you or too close to being a sales proposition? I have to add that I have no personal knowledge or experience of Rover. But did think the content of the article was of interest to you all.

Winter arrives

Keeping our dogs safe and secure through the winter times.

To my mind, it’s always a fine balance when I am sent a guest post from a person who represents a commercial organisation. Do I say ‘No’ because I don’t wish to promote a business that I have no personal experience of. Do I say ‘Yes’ if the guest post carries useful information for lovers of dogs.

Thus I didn’t immediately come to a decision when back in September I received the following email:

Learning From Dogs,

I hope this message finds you well.

I just would like to say thank you for the incredible amount of value you contribute to your website.

I’m reaching out because I’d love to submit a highly valuable piece of ‘pet’ content for your website that would be valuable for your readers.

If you’re still accepting posts, please let me know and I can put together a draft for your review. I hope you have an excellent day.

Warmest Regards,

Lannie N.
Digital Marketing Specialist
Allivet

I replied saying:

 Dear Lannie,

In principle I am always happy to receive guest posts.

That would apply equally to your goodself. All I would ask is that your post is written from a personal perspective and not one that is directly or indirectly promoting what Alivet does.

Simply because my readers assume that I am not for or against any product or service mentioned on my pages.

Lannie sent me the guest article and I judged it had valuable advice especially for this time of the year. Here it is.

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Tips to Keep Your Dog Happy and Healthy in the Winter

by Lannie, 18th September, 2017

Dogs love the warm, summer months when they can frolic and play outside. But our furry friends can have a hard time in the winter, when the days are shorter and the weather is too cold to go outside. Luckily, if you have a pet dog, there are some things you can do to help him stay healthy and thriving throughout the entire cold season. Here are some of the best.

Take Walks When the Sun Is Out

If you take your dog for walks for exercise, then be sure to walk him during the sunniest parts of the day. By walking in the sun, you can take advantage of the day’s warmest hours. You can also be sure that both you and your pooch get some much-needed vitamin D.

Use a Shorter Leash

When you walk your dog during the winter, make sure you use a shorter leash for him than you would during the warmer months. A dog that has a long lead may pull and run, which can cause both you and the dog to slip and fall. To keep your pooch injury-free this winter, try sticking to a 4-foot lead, which allows you more control over where he moves.

Make Sure Bedding Is Warm and Cozy

Just like you, your dog needs to cuddle up and keep warm at night. Don’t make your dog sleep alone on the floor. Instead, choose a bed that is the right size, and add accessories that can help create more warmth, like blankets, toys and pillows. Consider getting your dog’s bed up off the cold ground by choosing a raised one, and make sure he doesn’t have to sleep somewhere unheated or drafty.

Cut Down on Shampooing

You want to take care of your dog’s skin in the winter. Like yours, it can become chapped and dry. Try cutting back on how often you shampoo your dog. When you do bathe your pet, be sure to check him for ticks and fleas, which can still be around during the winter months. To prevent him from getting ticks and fleas in the first place, try using NexGard.

Protect Your Dog’s Feet

If it’s too cold for you to walk outside barefoot, then it’s too cold for your furry friend. Invest in booties that protect your dog’s feet, and make sure you put them on his feet when you walk in the snow or ice. Booties also prevent snow on sidewalks and streets from getting between your dog’s paw pads, which can cause burning and irritation. Something else to keep in mind during the winter is preventing fleas & ticks from spreading on your dog. Fleas and ticks are capable of surviving in outdoor temperatures as low as the upper 30s. Something to consider is finding a flea and tick product for your dog that will help prevent this from happening. If you would like to learn more, go here for information on Nexgard, which is a chewable preventative that can keep the fleas and ticks at bay.

Consider Feeding Your Dog More

Dogs tend to get cold in the winter, and their bodies have to work harder to keep them warm. For that reason, they can burn more calories during this season. To make up for the extra burned calories, consider boosting the amount you feed your dog by a little bit. Consult with your vet first to figure out the perfect amount to feed your pet.

Be Careful With Ice-Melting Materials

Ice-melting materials like salt and antifreeze can be extremely harmful, or lethal, to pets. Make sure you keep them far out of reach of your dog. If you have to use an ice melter on your sidewalk during the winter, be sure you monitor your dog so he does not eat it.

Your dog might not love winter, but with some help from you, he can spend the entire season healthy and happy. By taking a few simple steps, you can ensure that your pup feels good and is strong enough to take the arriving spring and summer by storm.

Lannie, writer for Allivet. Allivet provides affordable pet supplies and pet medications, all of which can be purchased online.

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The Allivet Pet Pharmacy website is here. As I inferred earlier on I have no experience, good or bad, with Allivet.

Thanks Lannie.