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I felt like I was paddling up stream in a fast moving river, determined to keep me from my goal. With my mind still spinning, dizzy with the rules to this word game. This is what happened when I went diving into the muddy stream of dog food terms... Be ready for a wild ride. 

Do not get me wrong, I am all for companies, even international companies growing, making lots of money, creating jobs, discovering new products that we find useful, and helping us with what we are doing; like trying to find a safe dog food. But we need to understand, people are in business for one thing, to make money or they would be a non-profit (even then there are some that make you wonder their true motives).  There are other secondary motives, such as job satisfaction, helping others, benefiting society, etc. But without profit there is no point in being in business.BTmoney-31

You can no longer trust, you have to learn, read, and make a decision... Sorry. But anytime you decide (Who helped you to decide? What commercial? Pretty pictures? ) to buy anything, you are being influenced by a marketing ploy.



Everything is a word game.

Rules? What rules?

1. Ingredient lists can be manipulated in various ways to make a product look more attractive than it really is.

2. If a particular brand is sold in bags of different sizes, the smaller the size, the higher the price per pound.

3. Pet food manufacturers only change the color and texture of dog food to make it look better to YOU, not your dog.

4. What your dog cares about is the way the food smells and tastes (pet food manufacturers also put unhealthy stuff in pet food to trick the dogs too).

5.  If the label says "manufactured for..." or "distributed by...," the food was manufactured by an outside manufacturer, but the name on the label still designates the responsible party.

6. The majority of pet owners will be swayed by marketing gimmicks and eye-catching claims because watching cute commercials requires less effort than understanding the information on the label.

7.  To recognize whether a food even includes any "real meat", you need to know the ingredient definitions.

 8. "Natural Organic" dog food looks grey and bland because it does not have potentially harmful artificial colors.

 9. If a name only includes the word "flavor" or "flavored", no specific percentage is required at all, but a product must contain an amount sufficient to be able to be detected.

10. Many pet foods are labeled as "premium," and some now are "super premium" and even "ultra premium." Other products are touted as "gourmet" items. Products labeled as premium or gourmet are not required to contain any different or higher quality ingredients, nor are they held up to any higher nutritional standards than are any other complete and balanced products.

11. The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) is a voluntary membership association of local, state and federal agencies and has no regulatory power.  They only provide guidelines for companies and the states to follow if desired, so you are right to be skeptical about any brand until you have fully researched it for yourself.




NOTE FROM BTN: Did you like the rules to this word game?  There is more, but we will share the rest at a later time.