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Thanks to our supporters’ generous contributions, we’ve managed to donate the following to the charities listed below (as of 24 February 2017).

After we tallied all the contributions, we are proud to announce that the following shelters received the following contributions:

Tears – 232 Vondi’s packets

DARG – 240 Vondi’s packets (160 already collected)

Fallen Angels – 95 Vondi’s packets

Lucky Lucy – 65 Vondi’s packets

Uitsig – 105 Vondi’s packets

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We pride ourselves in being well-read and learned. We pride ourselves in protecting animal rights and welfare.

The enlightened person applies logic when making purchases and challenges institutions that shamelessly and carelessly rely on marketing jargon to promote their wares, rather than presenting truth and facts.

Yet, when it comes to the treatment of our companion animals, the same person does not necessarily apply the same and equal principles.

For example, almost every person acknowledges the positive impact that a natural, wholesome and organic diet can have on health, well being and longevity. Yet when it comes to feeding our loving animals, the same attention and time spent on deriving at an informed decision, is found wanting.

Here are some pertinant issues pertaining to responsible pet care that should be understood and challenged:

  • Are our dogs carnivores or omnivores?
  • Is raw meat dangerous or safe to feed?
  • What carbohydrates/grains are considered as refined and which are appropriate to feed?
  • Do you really take time to understand the labelling and ingredients listed on your pet food?
  • Can dry kibble ever be considered as natural?
  • Is your vet a qualified nutritionist or should you be talking to your dietician instead?
  • Is your pet food ethical, moral and cares for the enviroment?
  • Why has the longevity of our pets decreased whilst the amount of common ailments and sickness increased?
  • Is flea poison a safe option to use when the same active ingredient is found in our household pest sprays?

Can we honestly consider ourselves true animal lovers and responsible guardians if we have not done the research, applied our minds and understood the ingredients and compilation of our pet’s diet and recipe?

There are many facids to animal protection and animal rights like the right to safety and freedom from harm. But equally as important is their inherent right to safe and nutritious diets and their right to products that are free from harmful chemicals and poisons.

Our modern era has become materialistic, insensitive and careless. We have steered away from good business and moral ethics and we have distant ourselves from natural living. In this hectic life style, convenience has become a priority with processed, preserved and chemical based products enjoying major support.

In protecting our animal rights it is the responsibility of the consumer to understand packaging labels, to research the safety of these ingredients and take a moral stance on correct feeding and care.

For only then can we consider ourselves true guardians of our companion animals and animal rights campaigners.

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As guardians of our domesticated pet, we have a responsibility to protect them from harm and assure them of basic humane rights. That said, it should be our honor and privilege to harbor this companion in our home.  A being so loyal, committed, loving and affectionate, you will not find anywhere.

Yet, world-wide and in South Africa, animal abuse is prevalent and our companion animal’s basic rights have been compromised. There are many fantastic organizations dedicated to protect these rights – the right to a safe environment, the right to be protected from harm and abuse and the right to live and die with dignity.

But what about our companion animal’s inherent rights to safe nutrition that is free of dangerous ingredients and preservatives. And what about their rights to products that are free from harmful chemicals and poisons?

Yes, we stand up when we see a dog being beaten and we voice our objection when they are left stranded and abused. Yet every day many people indiscriminately feed their companions diets that are inappropriate, highly preserved and contain ingredients that are dubious and dangerous. Each year many commercial pet foods are recalled due to contamination or for the inclusion of inferior ingredients. Who can forget the dreadful pet food recall that was so widely publicized in South Africa and where many of our pets either died or were sickened from food that contained the harmful ingredient, melamine?

For many years Vondis Holistic Pet Nutrition has been fighting for the rights of our pets to enjoy nutrition that is safe, moral and ethical. We encourage pet owners to scrutinize the “truths about commercial processed pet food” and decipher the obscurity in labeling.

We demand complete transparency with regards to the cooking process used to prepare commercial pet food and that they declare openly their ingredients and recipe. Preservatives that have not been tested to be safe should be banned. Ingredients, commonly used like digestives, by-products, emulsifiers, meals, etc deserve a more transparent explanation.

Animal Rights Africa has clearly identified certain brands that “ruthlessly conduct experiments on animals to try give their pet food a competitive marketing edge”. They strongly encourage pet owners to boycott brands that fail to sign up to the “no animal testing pet food standard”. Unfortunately, almost every brand of pet food is guilty of this indiscretion.

We challenge the veterinarians and their associations and their “cozy relationship” they have with the pet food companies. Much has been publicized about these “perverse incentive programs”. In the end the consumer is so over whelmed with marketing jargon that he is unable to commit to an informed and sensible decision.

Our modern era has become materialistic, insensitive and careless. We have steered away from good business and moral ethics and we have distant ourselves from natural living. In this hectic life style, convenience has become a priority with processed, preserved and chemical based products enjoying major support.

 In protecting our animal rights it is the responsibility of the consumer to understand packaging labels, to research the safety of these ingredients and take a moral stance on correct feeding and care.

For only then can we consider ourselves true guardians of our companion animals and animal rights campaigners.

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Natural supplementation is extremely important for your pet, especially when treating an ailment or condition. Herewith is a list of my preferred supplements to include in your companions diet.

OMEGA 3 FISH OIL – for skin conditions and allergies.

A quality omega 3 is essential in restoring cell damage and should be your first choice supplement. Almost every Vet will recommend an Omega 3 when treating skin disorders and inflammation.

Sally-Anne Creed is one of South Africa’s leading nutritionists and her stance on whether to use fish oil or flax oil is very clear. She firmly warns clients to avoid flax.

Although flaxseed oil is often touted, even by some doctors, as a substitute for fish oil, new studies show it’s not a reliable alternative.

A new Emory University study found that taking high daily doses of flaxseed oil  caused no increase at all of omega-3 DHA in the blood of subjects.

Similarly, feeding animal’s alpha-linolenic acid, as found in flaxseed oil, did not increase DHA in their brain cells, according to research at the National Institutes of Health.

New British research says high doses of flaxseed oil may even cause a decrease in omega-3 DHA and that flaxseed oil does not adequately nourish fetal brains.

According to the study published in ‘American Journal of Clinical Nutrition’ flaxseed oil is found very less effective against inflammatory conditions. Generally, flaxseed oil has been considered to be anti-inflammatory agent. But few more studies reveal the shocking truth that it actually increases inflammation in most of the cases.

My preference, especially when treating skin ailments, is high quality fish oil, preferably salmon oil.

APPLE CIDER VINEGAR – for itchy skin & arthritis

Apple cider vinegar is a remedy with multiple uses for dogs: alleviating allergies, arthritis, establishing correct pH balance.

If your dog has itchy skin, the beginnings of a hot spot, incessantly licks its feet, has smelly ears, or is picky about his food, the application of Apple Cider Vinegar may change things around. For poor appetite, use it in the food – 1 tablespoon, two times a day for a 20 kilo. dog.

Taken internally, Apple Cider Vinegar is credited with maintaining the acid/alkaline balance of the digestive tract.

If you have a dog that has clear, watery discharge from the eyes, a runny nose, or coughs with a liquid sound, uses Apple Cider Vinegar in his or her food. One teaspoon twice a day for a 20 kilo dog will do the job.

After your weekly grooming sessions, use a few drops in his or her ears after cleaning them to avoid ear infections and to clean out mites. Two parts Apple Cider Vinegar to eight parts warm water would be the desired dosage

For itchy skin or the beginning of hot spots, dilute Apple Cider Vinegar, three parts water and one part the vinegar, and add into a spray bottle or dab onto the dog’s skin.

Fleas, flies, ticks and bacteria, external parasites, ring worm, fungus, staphylococcus, streptococcus, mange, etc., are unlikely to inhabit a dog whose system is acidic inside and out.

Your dog will also smell so nice that you may mistake your companion animal for your garden salad

VONDI’S MULTI – VITAMIN SUPPLEMENT

Yeast: all B vitamins

Lecithin: helps body absorb fats

Garlic: natural anti-biotic and flea deterrent

Kelp: Sea minerals

Calcium: bone builder

Dandelion: cleans liver and kidneys

Vitamin C: tiny amount as they produce a lot of their own. Calcium ascorbate used as we don’t want to irritate the lining of the stomach

SPIRULINA – for immunity and digestion

One of my preferred supplements is Spirulina.

Spirulina contains a remarkable combination of vegetable protein, vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, and powerful antioxidants. These vital substances work in synergy to assist in immune enhancement, disease prevention, the promotion of healthy bowel flora and general well-being.

All vitamins and minerals in Spirulina are present as natural, organically-bound complexes. Unlike synthetic combinations of isolated vitamins and minerals, these complexes are easily recognized by the body and are therefore highly bio-available. Spirulina provides superior nutrition, especially at a time when many commercial foods are becoming increasingly more nutrient depleted

Spirulina has the highest protein content of any natural food.  Spirulina contains between 65 and 70% protein. This is 270% more protein than fish, 334% more than beef and 556% more than tofu.

Spirulina also excels with regards to protein quality. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. Unlike non-essential amino acids, essential amino acids can not be synthesized by the body and must be obtained from the diet. Spirulina provides all the essential amino acids and is therefore considered a complete protein.  With regards to usable protein (as a percentage of the food’s composition), Spirulina is second only to whole, dried eggs. Furthermore, protein from

Spirulina contains various trace minerals and provides 475% more calcium than whole milk and 5756% more iron than spinach. Iron from Spirulina is more than twice as absorb-able as the form of iron found in most meats and vegetables. Spirulina is the best natural iron supplement available and has been shown to correct anaemia, increase blood haemoglobin content and increase iron reserves.

In general, Spirulina enhances overall immunity, promotes a healthy gut and overall well- being.  Spirulina is an excellent supplement for a healthy skin and lustrous coat.  It enhances appetite even for finicky cats. Spirulina fed pets have a fresher breath odour.

In short Spirulina has been shown to:

* Boost Immune System

* Improve Digestion

* Produce healthy skin and lustrous coat

* Improve Appetite (so eat more of your food)

* Improve overall well-being and freshen breath

DEVILS CLAW AND ROSEHIP – an effective treatment for joint pain and arthritis

Supplementing your companion animal’s diet can be very beneficial. As a puppy or kitten it is very important to enhance nutrition whilst in the growth phase.

For adult or ageing companions, supplementing diet with enriched natural minerals and vitamins is well advised. This is especially true for dogs and cats that are likely to experience arthritic and hip dysplasia problems, which is very common with large breed dogs and almost all ageing animals.

Devils Claw and Rosehip is a must for all ageing animals and for that matter, humans.

DEVILS CLAW

Native to southern Africa, devil’s claw is a shrub that has lush foliage and red flowers. The plant gets its name from the miniature hooks that cover its fruit. For thousands of years, the Khoisan peoples of Madagascar and the Kalahari Desert have used Devil’s Claw root in remedies to treat pain and inflammation and many other medical ailments.

Today, Devil’s Claw is used for degenerative joint diseases such as arthritis, for back pain, and as an appetite stimulant and digestive tonic. Scientific evidence supports the use of Devil’s Claw root to help relieve pain and inflammation in people with arthritis and other painful disorders.

Studies have found that taking Devil’s Claw for several months substantially reduces pain and improves physical functioning in people with osteoarthritis. In addition, those who received Devil’s Claw experienced fewer side effects and required fewer pain-reducing medications throughout the study.

In addition to the treatment of osteoarthritis and other painful disorders, Devil’s Claw is also very useful for upset stomach, loss of appetite, headaches, allergies, and fever.

ROSEHIP

Another natural remedy that compliments the positive attributes of Devil’s Claw in dealing with arthritic and pain issues is Rosehip.

The pain-relieving properties of Rosehip, which has previously been linked to reduced inflammation in osteoarthritis, have been suggested for decades.

Scientists have found that powder made from a wild variety of Rosehip, Rosa canina, is better at reducing pain in patients than glucosamine, a treatment prescribed by many vets.

The latest studies led to a reduction in glucosamine use by many arthritis sufferers and that Rosehip powder was an effective alternative for those seeking a natural remedy for these symptoms.

The evidence for the benefits of rose-hip powder in osteoarthritis appears consistent, and, if pet owners wish to use this natural remedy in addition to any other prescribed treatment by their vet, this would be perfectly in order.

The Daily Telegraph in its headline claimed that Rosehip was ‘better than painkillers’ for arthritis. Researchers have found that it is three times more effective than standard paracetamol at relieving pain and 40% more effective than Glucosamine.

Feeding Requirements

Both Devils Claw and Rosehip can be bought at most health shops and some pharmacies in a powdered form and they are both very palatable. Your companion animal will have no problem digesting them when mixed with their food. Obviously, it would be a lot easier to administer if you were feeding a home cooked or natural diet.

I would recommend for small dogs and cats a half tea spoon of each, mixed with the food, daily. For a medium breed, 1 tea spoon of each and for a large breed, 1.5 – 2 tea spoons of each.

DIATOMACEOUS EARTH – a natural dewormer and parasite cleanser

Diatomaceous Earth is the fossilized shells of unicellular microscopic water-dwelling plants known as Diatoms.

These tiny unicellular plants use soluble silica (sand) from their environment to make their cells walls. When these organisms die, the shells pile up on the bottom to form thick beds of sediment.

These beds, called Diatomite or Diatomaceous Earth, are then mined from ancient dried lake bottoms.

One can obtain synthetic or processed Diatomaceous Earth which is often used in paints, filtering systems, chemical insecticides and cosmetics. However, NATURAL DIATOMACEOUS EARTH has not been altered in any chemical way and is derived from a fresh water source and contains less than 1% crystalline silica. Any Diatomaceous Earth that exceeds 1% is referred to as pool grade and best used in pool filtration systems.

Natural Diatomaceous Earth is made up of microscopic shells of diatoms. These fossil shells have tiny points (similar to lemon grass), which puncture the insect’s or parasites exoskeleton and thus kills them.  Thus Diatomaceous Earth operates mechanically and NOT chemically. Because of this, parasites and pests cannot become immune or resistant to Diatomaceous Earth.

There are commercial products available to de-worm and rid parasites, but they are all chemically based or poisons and can be a hazard to the health of your companion animal.

Diatomaceous Earth is registered, certified and approved by the Department of Agriculture and approved by almost every international agricultural body including the F.D.A, the E.P.A and the E.U.

Diatomaceous Earth is an effective natural de-wormer and parasite cleanser.  Parasites live in an animal’s intestinal tract, causing nutritional problems and physical irritation, effecting the health condition and attitude of the host. You can safely and effectively eradicate them with Diatomaceous Earth.

Diatomaceous Earth, when internally digested is known to kill parasites mechanically by scrapping the gut, literally piercing their structure. Externally applied, it is very effective in killing fleas in the same manner. Both are totally safe and work mechanically rather than chemically. Remember, chemicals and poisons will certainly have an adverse effect on skin conditions and general health.

Diatomaceous Earth has many other health benefits. It also helps to attract and absorb bad bacteria, herbicides, pesticides, food additives, artificial hormones, heavy metals, drug residues, viruses and toxins and helps excrete it from the animal’s body.

Diatomaceous Earth is very effective in helping to support your pet’s immune system and enhance metabolism by scrapping the gut and getting rid of toxins. Daily exposure to a wide variety of toxins can seriously affect your pet’s health. A highly-processed diet filled with colourants and preservatives, chlorinated water, commercial flea collars, insecticides and pollution are all contributors to a toxic and unhealthy life style.

Diatomaceous Earth also contains an array of trace minerals to feed and nourish your pet.  One of the minerals that it contains in abundance is Silica. Silica is a vital trace mineral required by the animal’s body for strong and flexible joints, glowing skin, coat health, stronger hair and bones.

In summary, Diatomaceous Earth helps to maintain all-round systemic functioning and maintain health and vigour in pets. Besides eradicating parasites, worms and pests, it other advantages are:

  • Improved Digestion and Nutrient Absorption
  • Improved Coat, Hoof and Bone Health
  • Enhances growth of animal
  • Contains 71 Organic Trace Minerals
  • Combats Arthritis and Joint Pains
  • Lower Cholesterol levels
  • Stimulates metabolism
  • Reduces overall animal stress

Feeding Recommendations

Diatomaceous Earth is a fine powder which is very palatable and should be added to your pet’s food. Daily supplementation is recommended:

Kitten/puppy – ½ spoon per day

Cat or Small Dog – 1 teaspoon per day

Medium – Large Dog – 2 teaspoons per day

 

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From the editor of the prestigious British medical journal, The Lancet, Dr. Richard Horton: Medical research is “unreliable at best, if not completely bogus”.

Comment from Vondis Holistic Pet – The content below applies also to the commercial pet industry which covers nutrition, medicine and flea poisons. This industry is dominated by some of the largest multinationals in the world. They too hide behind “science”.  A preferred source of reference is nutritional studies

Are you really safe when taking prescribed pharmaceutical drugs?

At least half of all scientific tests conducted on the safety and effectiveness of pharmaceutical drugs are worthless or worse, according to the editor of the prestigious medical journal, The Lancet, Dr. Richard Horton 1. Calling it “a turn towards darkness”, he warns that medical research is “unreliable at best, if not completely bogus”.

Big pharma falsifies

Major pharmaceutical companies falsify or manipulate tests by taking samples too small to be statistically meaningful.

They hire test labs or scientists that have blatant conflicts of interest such as pleasing the drug company to get further grants of money from them.

Dr. Horton published his statement after attending a symposium on the reproducibility and reliability of biomedical research at the Wellcome Trust in London in April last year.

Calling it “criminal dereliction and malfeasance”, he said: “Much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue.

“Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness.”

He said that major pharmaceutical companies falsify or manipulate tests on the health, safety and effectiveness of their various drugs by taking samples too small to be statistically meaningful or hiring test labs or scientists where the lab or scientist pleases the drug company to get further grants.

“90% of medical research tainted”

One of the world’s leading experts on medical research, Dr. John Ioannidis, has been saying this for several years. In an article entitled “Lies, Damn Lies, and Medical Science” 2, he says that 90% of medical research is tainted if not outright bogus, due to influence from the pharmaceutical industry.

Dr. Ioannidis is Professor of Medicine and of Health Research and Policy at Stanford University School of Medicine in California 3.

He is one of the most-cited scientists across the scientific literature, especially in the fields of clinical medicine and social sciences, according to Thomson Reuters’ Highly Cited Researchers 2015.

Further comment in the industry

Dr. Marcia Angell, a former Editor-in-Chief of The New England Medical Journal — considered another one of the most prestigious peer-reviewed medical journals in the world — has stated, “It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. 4

“I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of The New England Journal of Medicine.”

Corruption: medical studies and unfavourable results

Another voice is that of Harvey Marcovitch, who has studied and written about the corruption of medical tests and publication in medical journals.

He writes: “Studies showing positive outcomes for a drug or device under consideration are more likely to be published than ‘negative’ studies.

“Editors are partly to blame for this but so are commercial sponsors, whose methodologically well-conducted studies with unfavorable results tended not to see the light of day . . .” 4

“The good news is that science is beginning to take some of its worst failings very seriously.

“The bad news is that nobody is ready to take the first step to clean up the system.”

1 http://nsnbc.me/2015/06/19/shocking-report-from-medical-insiders/

2 http://www.drugawareness.org/lies-damned-lies-and-medical-science/

3 Wikipedia, “John Ioannidis”

4 http://nsnbc.me/2015/06/19/shocking-report-from-medical-insiders/

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Vondi’s had to endure extreme scientific testing and procedure in order to be legally registered in terms of Act 36 of 1947.

This involved:

  1. Microbiological testing to determine any aerobic or anaerobic growth so that it can be considered as “commercially sterile”
  1. A chemical analysis to determine balance to include: Protein, Moisture, Ash, Fat, Insoluble fibre, Ca, P, Linoleic, Omega 6:3, β-carotene.
  1. Perform a proximal analysis to determine its proximal composition moisture analysis.
  1. Determine an optimum time/temperature and a built in safety margin.
  1. Label development in terms of the law: Guaranteed Analysis, Feeding Guidelines, Open Declaration.
  1. Full chemistry on final product.
  1. Application to The Department of Agriculture for registration.

The fact that we don’t boast about our scientific registration and completeness, does not make us any less scientific than other veterinary brands. We have just preferred to advocate other attributes that we feel are just as important: WHOLESOMENESS, NUTRITIOUS and of course MORALITY and ETHICS.

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MSM has powerful pain-killing affects, whilst S&M promotes pain and suffering.

MSM strengthens connective tissue. With S&M, you need a tissue to wipe away your tears.

MSM relieves and reduces inflammation but with S&M your whole body is likely to be bruised and inflamed.

MSM reduces high blood pressure. With S&M, depending on how violent your partner is, you may be left with severe injuries and bleeding.

MSM acts as an effective anti-depressant but S&M is likely to leave you psychologically damaged.

MSM reduces joint degeneration but S&M can harm your joints, depending how “kinky” you get.

MSM improves lung function effectively but with S&M, strangling and suffocation is encouraged and can collapse your lung.

MSM relieves chronic constipation whilst S&M promotes perverse sexual activity that may cause irritable bowels and constipation.

AS you can see, I am not a huge fan of S&M (everyone to their own) but I am a huge fan of MSM.

MSM stands for methyl-sulfonyl-methane, which is sulphur.  Its main benefit, besides the above, is treating inflammation, Arthritis and Osteoarthritis.

Read up more about MSM and refrain from S&M.

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The owner of Vondi’s Pet Nutrition, Paul, cannot see why kibble food for humans should not be a success. Kibble food for dogs, more than 50 years old, has found favour in every home, throughout the world.

“When you look at the claims, the producers of these kibble diets make, complete, balanced, wholesome, protein enriched, this looks like the ultimate diet and therefore there should be no reason why this type of diet won’t have the same success for humans”, he says.

Moreover, homes can be built with less fancy kitchens and fridge and freezer facilities. One can get rid of this equipment and make your kitchens more compact, thus allowing larger living area space.

Paul has already designed the state of the art kitchen, including shelving to accommodate a variety of human kibble bags. And just like with our pets, the shelf life is 24 months, which means that you could make an initial big investment and not have to incur future food expense.

Paul has been very open with his recipes and claims that human kibble will be just as tasty as dog and kitty kibble. His favourites are Indian Curry Kibble, Italian Spaghetti Bolognaise, Peking duck, Irish stew and Sunday Roast.

Paul assures us that human kibble will have all the necessary supplements, vitamins and minerals to promote exceptional nutritional values. Moreover, it will have a great “crunch”, thus cleaning your teeth at the same time. “Throw away your tooth brushes”, he says. “No more wasting money on dentists and toothbrushes.”

Eating habits that have lasted thousands of years will change. You timelines as to breakfast, lunch and dinner will change forever. You don’t have to adhere to the norm. You can even eat your human kibble whilst in motion – eat and walk along the promenade, eat and workout in the gym. You can eat human kibble in the car to work, you can eat it in the movies, fill your kids lunch boxes – all this time, anytime, enhancing nutritional well-being.

When asked if such a kibble diet will cause upset stomachs, he says: “on the contrary – I have added a product called beet pulp into my recipe, which will induce the perfect dry stool.  It’s a little like Imodium – but different.”

When asked why he believes that other great entrepreneurs had not discovered human kibble before, he wasn’t really sure but believed that he would still become a billionaire from this invention.

We put it to Paul that worldwide, health fanatics and nutritional experts are turning to “whole foods”, “organic foods”, “fresh from the farm preservative free foods”.

“Well”, he said, looking a little disappointed, “those green people are weirdoes and anyways, I will produce organic human kibble as well, if they insist”. “People have fed their pets with kibble for 50 years and if you ignore the odd bouts of cancer, diabetes, bladder disorder, obesity, arthritis, skin ailments –  then this makes for an excellent tasty meal. Most of all, nothing beats convenience”.

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A healthy dog is a happy dog!

Natural supplementation is important for your pet, especially when treating an ailment or condition. Herewith is a list of my preferred supplements to include in your companions diet.

OMEGA 3 FISH OIL – for skin conditions and allergies.

A quality omega 3 is essential in restoring cell damage and should be your first choice supplement. Almost every Vet will recommend an Omega 3 when treating skin disorders and inflammation.

Sally-Anne Creed is one of South Africa’s leading nutritionists and her stance on whether to use fish oil or flax oil is very clear. She firmly warns clients to avoid flax.

Although flaxseed oil is often touted, even by some doctors, as a substitute for fish oil, new studies show it’s not a reliable alternative.

A new Emory University study found that taking high daily doses of flaxseed oil caused no increase at all of omega-3 DHA in the blood of subjects.

Similarly, feeding animals alpha-linolenic acid, as found in flaxseed oil, did not increase DHA in their brain cells, according to research at the National Institutes of Health.

New British research says high doses of flaxseed oil may even cause a decrease in omega-3 DHA and that flaxseed oil does not adequately nourish fetal brains.

According to the study published in ‘American Journal of Clinical Nutrition’ flaxseed oil is found very less effective against inflammatory conditions. Generally, flaxseed oil has been considered to be anti-inflammatory agent. But few more studies reveal the shocking truth that it actually increases inflammation in most of the cases.

My preference, especially when treating skin ailments, is high quality fish oil, preferably salmon oil.

APPLE CIDER VINEGAR – for itchy skin & arthritis

Apple cider vinegar is a remedy with multiple uses for dogs: alleviating allergies, arthritis, establishing correct pH balance.

If your dog has itchy skin, the beginnings of a hot spot, incessantly licks its feet, has smelly ears, or is picky about his food, the application of Apple Cider Vinegar may change things around. For poor appetite, use it in the food – 1 tablespoon, two times a day for a 20 kilo. dog.

Taken internally, Apple Cider Vinegar is credited with maintaining the acid/alkaline balance of the digestive tract.

If you have a dog that has clear, watery discharge from the eyes, a runny nose, or coughs with a liquid sound, uses Apple Cider Vinegar in his or her food. One teaspoon twice a day for a 20 kilo dog will do the job.

After your weekly grooming sessions, use a few drops in his or her ears after cleaning them to avoid ear infections and to clean out mites. Two parts Apple Cider Vinegar to eight parts warm water would be the desired dosage.

For itchy skin or the beginning of hot spots, dilute Apple Cider Vinegar, three parts water and one part the vinegar, and add into a spray bottle or dab onto the dog’s skin.

Fleas, flies, ticks and bacteria, external parasites, ring worm, fungus, staphylococcus, streptococcus, mange, etc., are unlikely to inhabit a dog whose system is acidic inside and out.

Your dog will also smell so nice that you may mistake your companion animal for your garden salad.

SPIRULINA – for immunity and digestion

One of my preferred supplements is Spirulina.

Spirulina contains a remarkable combination of vegetable protein, vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, and powerful antioxidants. These vital substances work in synergy to assist in immune enhancement, disease prevention, the promotion of healthy bowel flora and general well-being.

All vitamins and minerals in Spirulina are present as natural, organically-bound complexes. Unlike synthetic combinations of isolated vitamins and minerals, these complexes are easily recognised by the body and are therefore highly bioavailable. Spirulina provides superior nutrition, especially at a time when many commercial foods are becoming increasingly more nutrient depleted.

Spirulina has the highest protein content of any natural food.  Spirulina contains between 65 and 70% protein. This is 270% more protein than fish, 334% more than beef and 556% more than tofu.

Spirulina also excels with regards to protein quality. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. Unlike non-essential amino acids, essential amino acids can not be synthesized by the body and must be obtained from the diet. Spirulina provides all the essential amino acids and is therefore considered a complete protein.  With regards to usable protein (as a percentage of the food’s composition), Spirulina is second only to whole, dried eggs. Furthermore, protein from

Spirulina contains various trace minerals and provides 475% more calcium than

whole milk and 5756% more iron than spinach. Iron from Spirulina is more than twice as absorbable as the form of iron found in most meats and vegetables. Spirulina is the best natural iron supplement available and has been shown to correct anemia, increase blood haemoglobin content and increase iron reserves.

In general, Spirulina enhances overall immunity, promotes a healthy gut and overall well- being.  Spirulina is an excellent supplement for a healthy skin and lustrous coat.  It enhances appetite even for finicky cats.  Spirulina fed pets have a fresher breath odor.

In short Spirulina has been shown to:

* Boost Immune System

* Improve Digestion

* Produce healthy skin and lustrous coat

* Improve Appetite (so eat more of your food)

* Improve overall well-being and freshen breath

In my next editorial I will continue with this important subject of supplementation and I look at the health benefits of Rooibos Tea, Diatomaceous Earth and Rosehip and Devils Claw for our pets.

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Here is a list of ingredients commonly used in commercial pellets/kibble. How many of these ingredients, listed on their labels, do you know??

Ingredients:

  • chicken meal, lamb meal, fish meal, chicken, chicken digest, pork liver
  • barley sorghum, dried whole egg, cracked pearled barley, ground whole grain corn, pork by-products
  • soybean meal, dried whey, maize wheat, oatmeal, brewers rice   potato flour, millet ground yellow corn, chicken fat (preserved with mixed Tocpherois), animal fat, rice flour
  • dried beet pulp, chicken liver flavor, soybean oil, natural flavoring   flaxseed, linseed
  • yeast, culture brewers yeast, salt, iodised salt, sodium scienite, sodium chloride, potassium potassuim chloride, chloride, chlorine, chloride, dl-methionine hydroxyanalogue, l-lysine vitamin, e supplement, vitamin d3 supplement, d-activate animal sterol, vitamin a acetate
  • niacin calcium carbonate, calcium iodate, dicalcium phosphate, d-calcium pantothenate
  • biotin, vitamin b12 supplement, riboflavin supplement, thiamine mononitrate
  • ascorbic acid, pyridoxine hydrochloride, folic acid, iron oxide, manganous oxide, magnesium oxide, ferrous sulfate, copper sulfate,   zinc oxide, ethyenediamine dihydriodide
  • zinc proteinate, manganous proteinate, iron proteinate, magnesium proteinate, copper proteinate, glucosamine hci, marigold extract, chondrotin sulphate

I am the party pooper – but understanding your labels and ingredients is paramount to your pet’s health, wellness and longevity. I say, ”if you don’t know what you are feeding – DON’T FEED IT.”

food.label_.woman-reading

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