The Humane Society of the Unites States announced on Wednesday, February 3 that they are launching a new line of dog food. The Hsus touts that the dog food will be cruelty free, all-natural, and certified organic. The animal rights organization also states that the food will be free of animal based proteins and it does not support the factory farm industry. The dog food is being manufactured by a Certified Organic grower and manufacturer in Uruguay and will be available at PETCO and Whole Foods.
While this seems simple enough, it raises several different questions in my mind.
- Vegan food for Carnivores?
While the vegan lifestyle is great for humans, dogs are naturally carnivores. Their bodies are made for eating meat. They cannot handle many of the plant based foods that humans can, in fact are allergic to many of them like corn and soy, one of the main ingredients in the HSUS brand dog food. If the Humane Society is so concerned about the care and safety of animals, why are they selling a product that could be potentially harmful to them? Why do they feel the need to push their agenda upon pets? Humans can choose their food, not only because we are intelligent and make the purchases, but also because we are omnivores capable of digesting a variety of foods. Dogs are carnivores, they eat meat. Forcing them to eat otherwise amounts to cruelty.
Why is the dog food being manufactured in Uruguay, instead of on farms and manufacturing plants in the United States? There are many farmers across the United States that are not a part of the Factory Farm system that the HSUS derides. These farms provide jobs and taxes to the communities in which they are located. Instead the HSUS uses a farm and manufacturing plant in a foreign country. This also increases the transportation costs and energy spent. For those concerned about the environment who would buy this product because it was labeled organic, the increased fuel usage and transport eliminates any environmental benefits.
This dog food is not healthy for dogs to eat, despite what some may claim are the best intentions. The Humane Society should have considered the environmental and health concerns involved, instead of banking upon their reputation as animal advocates to hawk a product that is questionable at best. I hope that pet owners consider these factors when deciding whether or not to purchase this food for their dog.