Good nutrition is the cornerstone for a happy healthy pet.
Boxers are no exception. As with every living creature, Boxers
have certain considerations to be addressed when selecting a diet. With
so many foods available on the market today, we understand how
difficult it can be to choose the right one for your pet. We hope that
the following will help make your decision easier. Remember; the better
the diet and nutrition, the less trips to see the vet.
Scraps and by-products:
When cattle, swine, chickens, lambs, or other
animals meet their ends at a slaughterhouse, the choice cuts -- lean
muscle tissue and organs prized by humans -- are trimmed away from the
carcass for human consumption. Whatever remains of the carcass (bones,
blood, pus, intestines, ligaments, subcutaneous fat, hooves, horns,
beaks, and any other parts not normally consumed by humans) is,
according to the pet food industry, perfectly fit as a protein source
for cat and dog food.
The Pet Food Institute, the trade association of pet
food manufacturers, acknowledges in its 1994 Fact Sheet the importance
of using byproducts in pet foods as additional income for processors and
farmers. The purchase and use of these ingredients by the pet food
industry not only provides nutritional foods for pets at reasonable
costs, but provides an important source of income to American farmers
and processors of meat, poultry, and seafood products for human
Many of these remnants are indigestible and provide a
questionable source of nutrition. The amount of nutrition provided by
meat byproducts, meals, and digests varies from vat to vat of this
animal protein soup. A vat filled with chicken feet, beaks, and viscera
is going to make available a lower amount of protein than a vat of
Meat byproducts, the catch-all term of the pet food
industry, is a misnomer because these byproducts contain little if any
meat. Byproducts contain little if any meat. Byproduct are animal parts
leftover after the meat has been stripped from the bone. Chicken
byproducts include heads, feet, entrails, lungs, spleens, kidneys,
brains, livers, stomachs, noses, blood, and intestines free of their
contents. What the pet food manufactures fail to mention is that most
byproducts, digests and meals are also filled with other substances,
such as cancerous tissue cut from the carcass, plastic foam packaging
containing spoiled meat from supermarkets, ear tags, spoiled
slaughterhouse meat, road kill, and pieces of downer animals.
With Boxers being in the top two breeds for
developing cancer, preservatives are a huge concern. Dog food will
contain preservatives to extend shelf life, the kind of preservatives is
what should be considered and can make all the difference in the world.
The most common chemicals used to prevent rancidity, which should be AVOIDED completely are:
- BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole)
- BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) both known to cause liver and kidney dysfunction
- Ethoxyquin, another fat stabilizer often used which is suspected of being a cancer-causing agent
- Propylene glycol, a cousin to antifreeze, is found in many semi-moist dog foods
If you have seen the above mentioned on your dog food label stop using it as soon as possible.
There are natural preservatives on the market. Just
like you would look at a label for a child, your Boxer depends on you
to see that he or she is getting the best diet possible.
Do keep in mind that when changing to a higher grade
dog food, your dog may go through what is called detox. He may get
loose stools or appear to have an allergy. This is the body�s way of
cleansing itself from the chemicals built up over time. This will
rectify itself and you will see improvement in a short period of time,
usually within 3-4 weeks. DO NOT go back to the old food at this time.
Allow your dog�s body to rid itself of harmful chemicals during the
detox cycle and you will be amazed at the difference after a few weeks!
We can never take away from the wonderful work of
the veterinarians in our life but remember they are medical doctors for
your pet. Just like if you had a nutrition problem a human doctor would
refer you to a nutritionist. It is only humanly possible for them to
know so much. Today there is a huge amount of information available to
you on canine nutrition. The library, bookstore & Internet have an
almost infinite source. It is important for us to learn this
information. The better foods tend to be more expensive but if you
consider that you will be feeding less and they will cut down on your
vet visits, as well as the amount of waste your Boxer produces, they
become cost-effective. Most importantly your pet will live a longer
We cannot change genetics, but we can certainly try
and do as much as we can for our loving companions by providing them
with a healthy diet, medical care, and most importantly, love.