This article showed up in the paper this morning. I thought some might be interested in what they put in commercial dog treats.
What's Inside: Snausages Snawsomes
By Patrick Di Justo Email 08.21.07 | 2:00 AM
Photo: Thomas Hannich
For a doggie treat that presents itself as a twist of beef and cheese sticks, you wouldn't expect wheat to be the first ingredient listed. Turns out these snacks are closer to soft pretzels than Slim Jims: They're made mostly of wheat flour and pregelatinized wheat flour — a processed starch that makes food easier to digest.
Corn Syrup, Sugar, Crystalline Fructose
Sugar, sugar, and sugar. Now that the health risks of high-fructose corn syrup are well known, manufacturers have begun to distill the sugar out of it, selling the result as "crystalline fructose." The health risks are the same. But at least the stuff isn't too poisonous: Archer Daniels Midland claims that its crystalline fructose contains no more than 1 milligram of arsenic per kilogram. Sweet!
Beef and cheese tend to be naturally moist, but beef and cheese SnawSomes (which look like shiny puppy biscotti) get their appetizing sheen from glycerine.
Actually, the package merely promises "beef flavor." According to the FDA, that means beef need only be present in an amount "sufficient to be detected." And you can bet it's not going to be filet mignon. The Association of Feed Control Officials defines "meat" in pet foods as "striate muscle which is skeletal or that which is found in the tongue, in the diaphragm, in the heart, or in the esophagus; with or without the accompanying and overlying fat and the portions of the skin, sinew, nerve and blood vessels." Woof!
Dried Cheese Product
A goulash of milk derivatives containing less than 51 percent actual cheese. Cheese product is generally rejected by nutritionists for use in school lunch programs — something to think about if you treat your pooch like a substitute child.
Soy Protein Concentrate
Because these Scooby snacks are mostly wheat, Del Monte pumps in soy protein concentrate — essentially mashed soybeans with the fats and carbs removed. This brings SnawSomes up to a whopping 4 percent protein — just a touch more than a Twinkie.
Natural Smoke Flavor
Produced by burning wood chips and condensing the smoke into a liquid, this additive creates the illusion that food has been cooked over a flame. A CDC report showed that 92 percent of commercial liquid smoke flavorings contain benzoapyrene, a substance known to cause stomach tumors in animals. Thankfully, there's not enough here to be a real issue.
Onion Extract and Garlic Powder
A dash of flavor. But take note: Dogs can develop a blood disorder from eating onions or garlic. The amount in a single SnawSomes won't be harmful, but it's best to keep Fido from scarfing down the whole package at once.
Hershey Kisses, In charge of getting Ed out to the dog park so that he gets some exercise.
Doggie junk food!
I don't but a lot of those type treats and when I do I limit the intake to about 1 a day.
Thanks for the info.
Have to remember these are treats not the dogs daily diet. Kind of like our version of a cookie or chips.