Is processed pet food served up to man`s best friends purely to make our lives simple?

Processed jellied canned pet food and dry biscuits are today`s staple pet food but now a more natural raw food diet is a convenient and easily available option. The raw food diet is easy to follow, relatively inexpensive and your dogs and cats will love it.

Veterinarian Dr Lyn Thomson, with over 18 years experience has just opened Auckland based Raw Essentials to cater for the increased demand for natural raw foods. Raw Essentials is both a holistic vet clinic and a convenient source of frozen wild foods for pets in easy- to-handle frozen packages. The Raw Essentials range includes choices that are really close to our cats and dogs wild diet. The range includes hare, lamb, chicken, rabbit, possum, fish and ostrich.

“Just as humans are beginning to adjust their own diet away from modern processed food to more healthy options such as fresh and natural real foods, we should also be adjusting our pets` diet to foods that are unprocessed and raw,” says Lyn Thomson.

 “Feeding raw meaty bones to dogs and cats makes sense. If they found their own food, our cats and dogs would be hunting out food that best keeps them healthy and provides all their nutrients. A diet based on small prey species such as rabbits would be ideal. Not only do raw meaty bones provides the best dog and cat nutrition but as an added bonus, cleans their teeth, reduces digestive problems and ensures healthy happy pets.”

 Lyn Thomson grew up in Auckland and trained as a vet in the UK. She has 18 years of experience, working in vet clinics here and internationally. She saw the need to make it as easy to source quality raw foods for pets as it is to buy the highly processed options. She opened Raw Essentials earlier this year, located in the West Lynn shops right behind Harvest Wholefoods in Grey Lynn.

 The processed pet food industry is relatively young in terms of the domestication of cats and dogs. Canned and dried food seems incredibly practical to pet owners but are far removed from their natural diet” says Lyn Thomson. Most processed pet food contains grains, flavour enhancers, preservatives and colourings. Pets need to chew and crunch through their meals to keep their teeth clean and the jellied mush and dry biscuits just don`t provide this texture. Raw meaty bones are just great for dental health.

 Veterinarian Dr Lyn Thomson says her move into Raw Essentials was to fulfil a need to provide real food for pets easily. “As a vet I was struck by how often I was attending to digestive problems and dental problems. With diet being the link to both, and supported by the peer reviewed landmark text, “Raw Meaty Bones” by Dr Tom Lonsdale veterinary surgeon, it seemed appropriate to make it easy for pet owners to feed a diet of raw meaty bones.

 Lyn Thomson says these choices also have the advantage of being better for the planet. “Many of our pest species, such as rabbit, hare and possum are the perfect food for pets. It makes sense to utilise these pests, rather than poison them with 1080. The fur industry is working wonders for the possum trapping, but generally the meaty carcasses are not used. The Raw Essentials range includes hare, rabbit, possum, fish, lamb and free range chicken – some of these are New Zealand`s most damaging pests. The range is fully traceable from the field to the pet`s bowl and is packaged to make it easy to store and use. Pets love it.

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