On February 22, I gave a day of lectures on traditional Chinese veterinary medicine and food therapy at the Midwest Veterinary Conference in Columbus, Ohio. While I was at the conference I went to a lecture on “Unconventional Diets” given by one of the nutritionists at the OSU vet school. The term unconventional diets refers to everything weird – you know – anything that isn’t processed foods (basically homemade or raw).
You see, those in the conventional nutrition arena really do not understand those of us who think that there is something better than processed pet foods. It was not stated in this lecture, but another article by veterinary nutritionist explained away the trend toward unconventional diets by saying it’s a fad and that those who choose such diets have a “psychological need” to care for their pets this way. (Yes, that was the actual term used). In other words, we’re all psychos!
This OSU nutritionist was not quite that condescending, but she gave the typical, anti-raw, conventional lecture. Nothing I didn’t expect. Even though I disagreed with her message, I know how to behave at a lecture and just took in her point of view. I think we can all benefit from stepping outside the echo-chamber of our own food tribe.
This nutritionist did not see the point of feed dogs like wolves since wolves do not live long and we want our pets to live into old age. Of course wolves typically do not live into old age. Their habitats are being ravaged by man, they face starvation, and they are susceptible to drought and weather extremes. In their unperturbed ecosystems, they do not die of nutrient deficiencies or toxicities. Under the pampered environments of our pets, wolves would live long lives – as long as they continued their wild diets. That’s how Zoos feed them.
It has always amazed me that scientists who believe in evolution can think that an animal would evolve eating a diet that is anything less than ideal. I have heard them say that evolution only selects for animals until they breed and pass on their genes. However, the more genes an animal passes on, the more its traits are spread to future generations. That means, the longer an animal reproduces, the more fit it is. Evolution favors animals that are healthy enough to reproduce for a long time.
Our pets evolved eating raw, low-carb food. There has not been enough time, from an evolutionary standpoint, for them to adapt adequately to processed diets. That’s why we have so much cancer and chronic disease in our pets. You simply cannot improve on Mother Nature.
By the way, instead of arguing with the nutritionist, I invited her to a lecture on raw pet food I’m giving for the OSU Vet Student Holistic Club next month. I hope she joins us for a walk on the wild side.
Are you a psycho too?