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Should we Can the Canned Food?

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  • 4 min read

Can the Canned Food?

Should we can the canned food? 

If you’ve been with us for a while, you know how we feel about kibble. Dried, hard, crunchy, non-nutritious biscuits of blegh, with the same boring taste for two meals a day, every day. Dog biscuits or kibble are a cheap, traditional and breezy way to feed your pet, but the cheap and easy sacrifices a lot of important nutrients and excitement for your pet. So, what’s better than kibble? 

Canned food is a step up from kibble, it’s slightly more expensive, looks better and smells tastier, plus most pets seem keen to it compared to kibble, but is it really the better option? There’s a few things to consider when deciding whether or not to feed your pet canned food: the ingredients, how they were grown and harvested, and how they’re served and stored. 

Cheap(er) canned food often contains a number of unsavoury ingredients including preservatives like BHA and BHT, which your pets digestive system isn’t equipped to process adequately, leading to possible digestive issues. Preservatives, as well as chemical pesticides or growing agents, can accumulate in your pet's body over time and cause health problems, such as liver and kidney damage or cancer. Many canned foods also have a higher amount of fat and sodium, which can disrupt your pet’s healthy body and cause heart, kidney or liver problems.

But it’s not only what is in the cans, but what’s not in them, that you should consider: canned food only includes mechanically separated meats, missing important bones and organs which contribute proteins to your pets diet. Also, unlike our Bella and Boots food packs, the meat used is not often human grade, which means there’s a greater risk of lower quality product, or possibly dangerous, diseased or off meat. With the rise of organic and mindful eating, canned food has made strides towards better pet health: you can now find organic, preservative, grain and breading free wet food. This is certainly a step in the right direction, but even the highest quality wet food is still missing a few key aspects of deliciously healthy food for your pet.  For instance, doesn’t canned food have that uniquely metallic taste? You know the one, when you want a lazy dinner so you tip out a can of baked beans. When you sneak a cold one in while they’re heating on the stovetop, it’s good, but there’s that faint … coin taste. Our pets have heightened senses than even the most picky eater — and while our pets may not be that picky, wouldn’t you prefer freshly made, saucy baked beans, over the canned stuff?  

Another thing canned food misses, and something we feel very strongly about, is the raw aspect. This canned meat, alongside the vegetables present, are cooked above food safe temperatures, ensuring you don’t have to worry about parasites or unfriendly bacteria. Canned food shouldn’t make your pet sick, however having to cook the food (for safety and shelf-life) can have detrimental effects on the quality and nutrition of the food. 

Your dog and cat’s digestive system are optimised for raw foods, and have been for thousands of years before they were domesticated. While dogs and cats can digest cooked foods, you’re sacrificing so many of the benefits they’re primed to receive: cooking destroys enzymes and vitamins, such as B vitamins and vitamin C, which are important for digestive health and overall well-being. Proteins become de-natured and reduces the gut’s access to important minerals, such as calcium and phosphorus, which are crucial for strong bones and teeth. Wet food also increases risk of plaque build up and loss of strength in the jaw from disuse.

Bella and Boots’ food packs are made with organic (wild-caught, or free-range) human grade meat, and delicious seasonal vegetables, meaning you could cook up and eat a Bella and Boots food pack for yourself  — but your pet is best eating our food packs raw. The crunch from the seasonal vegetables gives your pets jaw and teeth a proper work out to keep them working like they should, and their digestive system gets to reap all of the nutritious benefits of raw, bioavailable nutrients.  

There’s no risk with Bella and Boots’ raw meat, because we ensure the highest level of food safety and deliciousness. When you buy from local, organic and thoughtfully run farms like those who we build our food packs with, you’re assured the meat is well-looked after, safe to eat and delicious.

If you're here for the first time because you're new to the world of raw meat, or you're looking to upscale your pets diet and improve their health and well-being, welcome! You can learn more about the health benefits of our food packs online and try all the different flavours with our trial pack. If you're a long time Bella and Boots fan, then welcome back. We'd love to hear how Bella and Boots has changed your pet's life. You can tag us on social media @bellaandbootspet or fill out our Pet of the Fortnight form here to win a 700g food pack.

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