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Please jump in on this question and get involved! I would really like some feedback as to what everyone's opinion as to what is most important to them. Don't be shy!
Since nobody wanted to comment on this post, I will type in my views. I think the most important ingredient that should go into any food for dogs or cats, should be quality. Everyone has a different idea of what quality is in their own mind. For me quality should be picking out the better ingredients to go in the mix. Quality should be it is cooked consistently every batch. Quality is every batch is tested. Quality is not cutting corners to make the most profit, it is providing a good product at an honest price.
Anyone is welcome to add to or take away from my comments. Please feel free to do so.
Christopher– Posted on June 26, 2012
New data released by the ASPCA, HSUS, and the American Pet Products Association‘s
National Pet Owners Survey show that shelter killings are at an all time low in
both whole numbers and percent of pet dogs in America. Down from a high of
nearly 25% of all dogs per year in the 1970s, as little as 2% of dogs now find
their end in US shelters per year, the majority of them are pit bulls.
Despite both the human and pet dog populations in America rising, the number
of dogs entering and dying in shelters has fallen steadily for decades. While
this vast improvement hasn’t stemmed the degree of vitriol against “breeders” by
those in the shelter/rescue community, a look at statistics shows that there is
little foundation for their anger. The situation is getting better every
year and very little of the past or remaining problems have anything to do with
hobby breeders or people who buy their dogs.
The most significant factor in the steady decline in shelter intakes is widely
credited to the advancements made in spay/neuter programs. Nearly four out
of five pet dogs are now desexed. Despite making up only 1 in 5 pet dogs,
intact dogs account for 9 out of 10 shelter intakes, a staggering asymmetry.
Purebreds are under-represented in shelters versus their proportion of the 78
million pet dogs, but up to a quarter of intakes are deemed to be pure versus
75% deemed mixed-breed. The most significant disparity between the general
population of dogs and dogs that enter shelter and are euthanized is
being designated as a “pit bull” or a pit bull mix.
Whereas the percent of dogs desexed has increased since spay/neuter programs
were widely introduced in the mid 70s, the popularity of pit bulls and their
share of euthanized dogs has steadily increased from as little as 2% in the
1980s to the 60% we see today.
The 2.4 to 3.5 million Pit Bull type dogs that are
currently pets make up between 3% and 4.5% of the owned dogs in the USA yet the
1.1 million that enter shelters each year account for nearly 30% of all shelter
intakes and 60% of all dogs euthanized. That means that more pit bulls are
killed than all other breeds combined. Pit bulls also account for 60% of fatal dog attacks with Rottweilers coming
in second with 14%. Fatal attacks are fleetingly rare, but bites and
maulings are not, and even pit bull apologists will admit that their aggression
propensity towards other dogs and cats is significantly higher than it is
towards humans. Yet the average age of dogs entering shelters is only 18
months, so a staggering share of these failed relationships
are occurring with adolescent dogs and problems with dog aggression or
anything similar doesn’t even register on the top 10 reasons people report for
why they are abandoning the dog at the shelter.
The biggest lie in dogdom today is that there is an “overpopulation” problem.
This ignores the steady increase in both percentage of homes that have dogs, the
rising number of dogs per home, the increase in population and the increase in
The next biggest lie is that breeders are to blame and that every purchased
puppy condemns a shelter dog to death. This ignores that the majority of
dogs are acquired for little to no cost from friends or family, not from
breeders, and that every aspect of buying a dog from a breeder decreases the
chance that the dog will ever see the inside of a shelter.
Pit bull rescuers will wail and complain and blame puppy mills, hobby
breeders, and puppy buyers with the most heinous of crimes against dogs and
humanity. But the truth is that the foster pit bull at their feet is more
likely to end up back in a shelter and more likely to get put down than any
puppy mill dog sold in a mall, any purebred dog sold by a hobby breeder to a
family that paid for it, or even the most carelessly bred oops mutt.
In fact, those pit bulls are making all other breeds of dog and dog
enthusiasts look worse than they are. Without pit bulls in the picture,
the yearly euthanization rate could be less than 1% of dogs. If you’re
decrying dead shelter dogs and the first words out of your mouth are “breeders” and “buyers” or “overpopulation,” and not “pit bull culture” then you’re dangerously misinformed.
The rising status of dogs in our families combined with spay/neuter, foster
and rescue, and no-kill programs have made the last 30 years an increasingly
better time to be alive for dogs. While there’s still work to be done, and
there will always be animals in need, the old paradigm of blame
and internecine hatred–especially attacks aimed at people who endeavor
to do right by their dogs from conception to old age–are misguided and distract
from the real problems.
Due to someone's sense of humor, or the lack there of, today on Facebook. I have decided that all posts will be approved before being posted. Please don't let this stop you from engaging and adding to any information I post.
This month, I’d like to share with you a study on spay and neuter procedures
that’s making big waves in veterinary circles. It really has surprised many
people. However, before I launch into the review, I want to caution you that
sometimes studies can be misleading, so let’s take the following with a grain of
salt before we overhaul the way we think about the importance of alteration
This new study was published by researchers at the University of California –
Davis. It indicates that neutering may adversely impact the risk of some dogs
for developing certain cancers and joint problems. This study runs counter to
prevailing sentiments, so it’s worth a review of where we stand now.
In the U.S., pet parents overwhelmingly support the neutering of dogs,
justified by concerns about overpopulation and minimizing the development of
unwanted behaviors (such as roaming, aggression and marking). Nowadays,
neutering is considered part of responsible pet care, and spay and neuter
surgeries are usually done when dogs are less than one-year-old.
But in the past 10 years, studies have indicated that neutering can have
negative health effects for certain breeds (see references). Drawing on these
previous studies, researchers at Davis used historical data from their
veterinary hospital to examine the effects of neutering on the risks of several
diseases in one breed, the Golden Retriever. The researchers involved chose to
focus exclusively on Goldens due to their popularity in the U.S. and Europe, as
well as their predisposition to certain genetic issues. The study focused on
joint disorders and cancers because neutering removes sex organs (testes or
ovaries), which interrupts the production of certain hormones that play
important roles in key body processes (such as the closure of bone growth
The study showed that in Golden Retrievers, the rates of hip dysplasia,
cranial cruciate ligament tear (knee injury), lymphosarcoma, hemangiosarcoma and
mast cell tumors were higher in both males and females that were neutered
compared to intact (non-neutered) retrievers. Specifically, early neutering was
associated with an increase in the occurrence of hip dysplasia, cranial cruciate
ligament tears and lymphosarcoma in males, and cranial cruciate ligament tears
in females. In fact, there was a doubling of the incidence of hip dysplasia
among early-neutered males.
Another interesting finding was that late neutering (after the first heat
cycle) in females was associated with a higher incidence of mast cell tumors and
hemangiosarcomas, with no apparent explanation. In contrast to the rather
strong evidence for neutering males and/or females as a risk factor for certain
cancers and joint disorders, evidence for neutering as protection against a dog
acquiring one or more cancers is weak. The most frequently mentioned is mammary
cancer, however, a recent systematic review of published work on neutering and
mammary tumors found the evidence that neutering reduces the risk of mammary
neoplasia to be weak, at best (Beauvais W, Cardwell JM, Brodbelt DC, 2012).
Even given the results of this new study, the relationship between neutering
and disease-risk remains a very complex issue. For example, the increased
incidence of joint disease seen in early neutered dogs is likely a combination
of the effect on the growth plates and the increase in weight on the joints that
is commonly seen in neutered dogs, and may even be affected by genetic factors
yet to be determined. Obviously, more research is needed in this arena.
This research is notable for a couple of reasons. In Goldens, it suggests
that the neutering of males well post-puberty could possibly help to avoid the
problems of increased rates of hip dysplasia, cranial cruciate ligament tears
and lymphosarcoma. For females, the issue is more convoluted and more studies
are needed, because early neutering seems to increase the incidence rate of
cranial cruciate ligament tears and late neutering may be tied to higher rates
of certain cancers. For pet parents of pure-bred Goldens, the bottom line is
that it is extremely important to gather all information before deciding if and
when to neuter. As with all medical decisions, please review the options
available to your companion animal with your veterinarian before deciding on a
course of action.
It is important to note that the results of this study are breed-specific to
Golden Retrievers and cannot be extrapolated to other breeds, or dogs generally.
This study may or may not be the tip of an iceberg, as a full understanding of
the disease conditions affected by neutering across all breeds would require
many more breed-specific studies, and these may not bear any meaningful fruit.
Needless to say, veterinarians will be following new research closely.
Pet parents wanting to learn more about this provocative study can read it at
the link below (first listing under ‘References’).
Just to be absolutely clear, I am still very much committed to neutering pets
at a young age (although perhaps not the very young) due to the systemic
problem of overpopulation and the horrible consequences of doing nothing at all
to turn the tide.
Thank you for all you do to make the world a better place for companion