Why would someone eat dog food? We’ve all heard stories about elderly people who are so poor and desperate that they would eat canned dog or cat food. Then there are those stories about people living in or visiting the United States from another country who routinely eat cats and dogs and so they thought that can of cat food was actually cat… food… ewwww.
Anyway… did I ever tell you about the time we ate dog food?
It was a couple of years ago. A local discount food market that I shopped on occasion advertised “pet” food meat, available for 50 cents a pound. We live in a rural area and it’s pretty much the norm to have a couple of dogs. They are a great alarm system. We’ve learned to distinguish their barks… is it a person? Other dogs? Coyote? Someone on a horse? One of our dogs loves people and would never bark at a person, so if he’s not barking then it’s not a person. But he does bark at horses, even if there is a person on the horse. Pretty much all of them bark and howl with the coyotes. That’s the weirdest thing how they all start howling and then stop all at the same time.
But I digress. All my life I’ve fed my dogs dry food and never thought twice about it. Our dogs appeared healthy and thriving on dry dog food. Until one little puppy we were asked to foster. He was only 3.5 weeks old, a tiny little thing. He was so adorable, but I knew we could never keep him because of his breed.
Well, of course I fell head over heels in love with the little boy as did my husband. We ended up keeping him and he is – no contest – hands down, the smartest, most loyal and loving dog my husband and I have ever owned.
Just one little problem. He started showing signs of being allergic to commercial dog food. He scratched and scratched and we tried several different dog foods. None seemed to be right. He would be better for a time, but then he would start itching again.
Understanding that allergies shouldn’t be subdued with medication, I wanted to get to the real source of the problem and searched the Internet for an answer. I’d heard about feeding dogs a raw meaty bones diet so decided to try with him. We eventually converted all our dogs to a raw diet and the results were amazing. The biggest and most wonderful side effect – no more pests. I hate ticks and I cannot tell you how many disgusting hours I spent picking ticks before we went raw. I’m opposed to poison – which never seemed to work anyway – it makes zero sense to me to pour poison onto any kind of animal, it just seems like you are begging for health issues.
The next problem was trying to do this frugally. As I mentioned at the beginning of my post, this discount store would share in their newsletter that they had pet food meat for sale. I decided to check it out. Yes, they really did have various kinds of meat for sale for fifty cents a pound. This was way cheaper than we’d been able to find. I bought about 100 pounds.
Mr. A loaded the meat into the upright freezer. And that was that. Until a couple days later when he comes into the kitchen with a funny look on his face.
“Dear… Um… have you taken a look at this ‘pet’ food?”
I was appalled at the thought and probably gagged just a little because it didn’t look too pretty when I brought it home.
“No really, you’ve got to see this. I don’t think I can feed this to the dogs. Seriously.”
As it turns out the greyish look to the meat was only on the outer layer. For whatever reason, this meat had been deemed unfit for human consumption but after my husband cut away the grey looking layer of fat, underneath was the most gorgeous, gigantic hunk of rib eye roast we’d ever seen in our life.
Still we were freaking out at the thought of eating it. After all, it was condemned meat. But it was so beautiful we had to try it.
Man. My mouth still waters thinking about those rib eye steaks. We sliced them two inches thick and ate high on the hog. We were never so glad to be eating “dog food”. We still of that “dog food” fondly. The discount store stopped selling pet food meat to the public a few months later. Too bad since the price of beef has sure skyrocketed lately.