Raw ingredients in pet foods items can carry a health and wellness risk for pets — and people.(Image credit: Shutterstock)
Wild relatives of domestic dogs and also cats thrive on raw flesh, yet a so-called "raw" diet because that pets carries dangers of their exposure to parasites and bacteria, a new study finds.

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What"s more, a pet"s life diet may put human beings at danger for this infections, too.

Pet foods and also treats that incorporate raw meat, guts or meaty bones have been uncovered to encompass parasites such as Toxoplasma and tapeworms, as well as the bacteria Escherichia coli, Listeria monocytogenes, Brucella suis and Salmonella, follow to a study recently carried out in the Netherlands. Introducing these pathogens into residences through contaminated pet foods presents the possibility that lock could additionally sicken people, the examine authors reported.

Pet owner who pick to feed their animals with a life meat-based diet (RMDB) may think that they"re providing their pooches or felines a healthy choice. Yet no studies show that this diets provide health benefits — if anything, prior study has documented that the contrary is true, the scientists described in the study. RMDB feeding was linked to gastroenteritis and diarrhea in dogs, and also to a deadly form ofSalmonella epidemic in cats, follow to the study.


Previous findings additionally note the RMBDs deserve to lack essential nutrients, which deserve to lead to health difficulties — an especially in young animals. This diets have contributed to pets developing hyperthyroidism(an overactive thyroid gland), and also have even resulted in injuries together as broken teeth and gut perforations, the researchers reported.


Since dogs diverged indigenous their wolf ancestors an ext than 10,000 years ago, genetic distinctions have additionally emerged that have actually left dogs far better equipped to handle a diet that consists of starches and meats. Dogs have more copies that a gene that produces amylase — an enzyme the breaks down starches — than wolves do, and this gene is 28 times an ext active in dogs than in wolves, researcher reported in 2013.

Currently, as countless as 1 million dutch households provide their pets with a diet that has raw meat or raw by-products, the researchers created in the study. To view what microorganisms could be lurking in the food, they experiment 35 assets containing different types of life meat and meat by-products, consisting of chicken, beef, lamb, duck, rabbit, horse and turkey.

They discovered E. Coliin 86 percent the the products, while 54 percent consisted of L. Monocytogenes and 20 percent hosted Salmonella. Parasite DNA to be detected in 29 percent that the samples, the researchers discovered.


In general, the microbial evidence that the researcher gathered from your samples fell within acceptable limits for commercially created pet products in the Netherlands. But the quantity of E. Coli in 40 percent that the RMDBs gone beyond the threshold because that safe person consumption, and a human being could come to be infected with the bacteria through call with the pet food; v contaminated surfaces; or with an infected pet, the researchers reported.

And Salmonella speciesanalyzed in the examine presented another unpleasant surprised — they were resistant come antibiotics, which would make infections daunting to treat.

"It is vital to encourage awareness the the feasible risks linked with feeding RMBDs come companion animals, and pet owners have to be educated about an individual hygiene and also proper managing of RMBDs," the examine authors concluded.

The result were released online yesterday (Jan. 11) in the journal Veterinary Record.

Original short article on Live Science.

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Mindy Weisberger is a Live Science an elderly writer spanning a general beat that includes climate change, paleontology, weird pet behavior, and space. Mindy holds an M.F.A. In movie from Columbia University; prior to Live scientific research she produced, wrote and directed media for the American Museum of Natural background in brand-new York City. Her videos about dinosaurs, astrophysics, biodiversity and evolution appear in museums and also science centers worldwide, earning awards such as the CINE gold Eagle and the Communicator award of Excellence. Her writing has additionally appeared in clinical American, The Washington Post and also How It works Magazine.