I’ve always loved the cleverness of the “Magic School Bus” – one of the most ingenious educational programs to date.
Today I’d like to invite you on a journey through the digestive tracts of two very different groups – herbivores and carnivores, to see why Nature, unlike companies that produce processed food scraps, believes that raw food is the best choice. If you’re unsure about raw eating yourself or have a friend trying to educate you, this blog post may be helpful.
Let’s look at the cow – a herbivore. It has three fore-stomachs and one stomach to digest and ferment vegetable matter, grain and fiber. A horse represents a slight variation on this design. It would be very difficult for a horse to run fast with a large forestomach full of food. Instead, horses have a large large intestine that also digests and ferments vegetable matter and fiber.
The digestive tract of carnivores is very different. They are shorter, have a smaller but stronger stomach and have relatively short intestines. The digestive glands of the stomach and especially the pancreas are larger and produce large amounts of protein digestive enzymes. Carnivores do not have the ability to process fiber through fermentation as well as herbivores.
When dogs eat large amounts of fiber, grains and complex carbohydrates, they cannot digest them properly. This makes their feces large and have a strong odor. The feces of a dog fed processed food are three times as large and if you can’t see it, you can definitely smell it.
click here to view full size.
The above is the clear and powerful message of nature. Feed a diet appropriate for the species.
As a veterinarian, I see the consequences of feeding processed, carbohydrate-rich foods every day. Obesity, dental problems, premature aging, arthritis, kidney and liver problems, digestive problems and allergies.
How should I know that? Often these problems disappear completely or at least improve after feeding the right food.
The story of Randy and Dinara
I met Randy seven years ago, on the day I adopted eight-week-old Skai and he adopted Dinara. We chatted briefly, shared our excitement about our new family members and agreed to meet up for a walk every now and then.
As Dinara and Skai grew, I started to see the difference. Her coat was duller, her bones were lighter, her feet were not as strong, and the ligaments seemed loose. Skai was fed raw food and Dinara was fed processed food and it started to show. I tried talking softly to Randy several times, but he chose not to see the obvious differences. ‘Her food must be good. It was recommended by a vet,” he replied.
I quickly realized that I was not the person who could convince Randy. It’s never a good idea to give a friend unsolicited advice, even if it is well-intentioned. I put the problem aside and hoped for the best.
Three years later, Randy called me triumphantly. “Peter, guess what? I talked to a lady at the local magazine store and she told me that raw food is great for dogs and I decided to go for it. I see the difference between Skai and Dinara. Skai looks so much better.”
For a moment I felt like saying, “But I’ve been trying to tell you for three years!” However, I remained silent.
Since then, Randy has been feeding Dinara fresh food and she is doing well. However, her bone and joint development will never be as strong as if she had started earlier.
Now I have another challenge; how to convince Randy that natural nutrition is simple, but the main principles must be followed to get good results.
I secretly hope that the magazine lady he spoke to was a vet with experience with natural and raw diet foods…