UPDATE: This post has been getting a crazy amount of views suddenly, both positive and negative. So, I just wanted to remind readers that I am not a professional when it comes to dog health and nutrition. I am simply a dog mom, foster parent, and rescue volunteer who writes posts on this blog for fun. I wrote this article because I was curious about the topic and wanted to share my findings with my followers. I am certainly not trying to force any opinions on readers or talk badly about vets in general. Thank you! – Molly
3 min read (Articles narrated by Mabel)
There are lots of disagreements when it comes to what food is best for your dog. Most confusion comes from what vets tell you. You’ve probably seen many articles about how it’s important to have healthy meat sources and no fillers in your dog’s food. However, many of the brands vets recommend contradict this healthy advice. Why is that?
When Molly takes me to the vet, they usually talk badly about how I eat a grain-free diet. However, we have researched it very thoroughly, and we haven’t found any real proof that grain-free is bad. However, there are plenty of clear reasons as to why the products they recommend are.
What Do Vets Usually Recommend?
Many vets recommend Hill’s Science Diet and Royal Canin as their preferred brand. In fact, many even try to say that they are prescription diets. However, if you take a closer look at the ingredients, both brands are actually very low-quality and have had a higher number of recalls.
On Dog Food Advisor, both Hill’s Science Diet and Royal Canin foods receive between a 2.5 and 3 rating. It seems odd that vets would recommend anything below a 5-star rating.
When you read the ingredient list, you’ll also notice that many of the top ingredients in these foods are grains and other fillers. Ideally, the first few ingredients should be a quality meat source, followed by other beneficial ingredients. However, a lot of these “prescription foods” just have cheap fillers in them.
I even read an article recently that did a study with some vets. The vets were given 4 different ingredient lists and asked to rank them from best to worst quality. Surprisingly enough, the food that the vets ranked last was the one that was most similar to Hill’s and Royal Canin.
So, if many vets know that their recommendations are not the healthiest, then why would they recommend it? It just doesn’t seem fair to all the poor dogs out there.
Why Would Vets Promote Unhealthy Products?
In general, dry kibble is the unhealthiest way to go. Some kibble is definitely a much better quality than others, but most of it is like junk food for dogs. So, there has the be a reason as to why vets would recommend the unhealthiest junk food possible.
This whole problem began way back in the 1980s. Colgate Palmolive is a company that creates a wide range of products, one of which is Hill’s Science Diet. In the ’80s, they used dentists to promote their toothpaste, which worked really well. So, they decided to also work with vets to sell their dog food. The same goes for Royal Canin, which is made by Mars.
To this day, these types of partnerships continue. Vets are essentially paid to promote these specific brands, which is why they will often try to encourage you to buy them. However, that still doesn’t make it right if you ask me.
Sadly, a lot of the dog industry is all about making money. A lot of dog food is created just for profit and not for our well-being. That’s why Molly always looks at the ingredients before deciding if a food is good or not. If a brand only uses healthy, beneficial ingredients instead of cheap fillers, you can tell that they put your dog’s health as a number one priority.
So, while you should trust your vet on all other health aspects, food just isn’t one of them. Do your research before blindly agreeing with your vet about food. It’s not fair that money has so much control over dog products, but it’s the sad reality that we live in. Hopefully things will be different in the future!
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