Chicken Guts

In one of your FAQs, there was an "aside" comment made in response to someone's statement about feeding their dog a slice of bacon. The comment was something to the effect of "not feeding the Border Collies that junk. Feed them dogfood." Yet on inspection, most dogfood bags list ingredients like chicken byproducts and internal organs. Yuck! Why can I not feed my dog bacon and yet it's alright to feed my dog chicken guts?

The internal organs of chickens and cows are by far the best source of nutrition for animals - much more so than the tender breasts and tenderloins we so value. Nothing beats a good chicken liver or cow's heart for nutrition. In many other cultures, these are the most highly prized parts of an animal. Western culture has spurned their use in favor of the less messy and intellectually cleaner steaks and the like. If you ever watch an animal kill (on TV or live), you'll notice the first thing they eat is the internal organs - and for very good reason - it's the most nutritious part. (It's also why your dog tends to tear the stuffing out of its toys) Your mother knew what she was talking about when she said "Eat your liver and onions. It's good for you." Too bad most of us consider it gross.

There's nothing inherently wrong with feeding your dog bacon. It's just that it is very high in fat, which can lead to obesity and problems with the pancreas. If bacon was dumped into the dog food slurry and balanced off by other ingredients to assure a balanced diet, I would have no problem with it. Unfortunately, most people don't balance off the bacon they feed their dog with other sources and if they tend to feed a single strip of bacon to their dog, they also tend to feed their dog other fattening things like ice cream, pieces of fat from their steak, etc. etc. The maximum a dog should receive in table scraps is 10 percent of its total diet. Problem is, the people that tend to indulge their dogs with this kind of stuff tend not to stop with the single piece of bacon once a week. If you can, more power to you but like smoking or doing drugs, I think once most people start, it's hard to hold themselves to moderation. It's just a bad habit to start feeding your dogs people food. If you want to give your dogs treats, give them the canine treats that are manufactured for them or healthier items like carrots, apples, etc. They don't mind, trust me.

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