Pet News Review Weekend Edition

by Mary Haight on May 8, 2010

Pet news from Reuters this past week lifted eyebrows on the Street as Procter & Gamble surprised many with the purchase of Natura brand pet food.  They were the company that years ago bought Iams/Eukanuba and put it onto supermarket shelves. Ever since, the market has waited for them to shed the sector. Instead, P&G closes this deal early next month and with that will have a stake in the high end holistic pet food niche. Brands include Evo, Innova, California Natural, Karma, Healthwise and Mother Nature.

Today is the 14th annual day of protest against P&G for its unrelenting animal testing practices, in effect since 1989.  Their Dawn dish soap product is used to clean oil-coated wildlife after disasters like the recent oil well breach on the Gulf of Mexico’s ocean floor, an odd confluence of P&G events!  The story by Stephanie Feldstein is here.

Speaking of oil, there was an interesting story in the Wall Street Journal  about hair mats, not the kind in your hair when you wake up in the morning, but the kind that look like you might wipe your feet on them. They are made of pet hair and other materials and are used to soak up oil spills – yes, you read that right. Check out the video – the demonstration is pretty amazing. It’ll make you want to ask your groomer to ship off all her hair clippings! 

There’s a lot of news about dog food this week in the form of  bringing to the forefront arguments as in the article here “The Fight Over Pet Food vs Pet Food Safety “about the different choices of diet, what’s in pet food and what shouldn’t be included. Edie Jarolim takes a look at kibble in her The Friday Five: In Defense of Kibble  exploring the alternatives from the boutique type diets to the supermarket. Her blog is “a guilt-free zone for good dog owners”, so check it out with fear of pain and recrimination! Jim McBean at Doggybytes.ca has some fun poking at the FDA and their recent sprint away from responsible research in the blanket summary dismissal of feeding bones to your dog in “FDAs Top Ten Scary Reasons Bones Are Unsafe for Dogs”  And Peggy Frezon a  free lance writer over at Peggy’s Pet Place started the week with a “Welcome to Dog Food Month” where she will feature guest posts on this topic for the entire month.

 The other day I was driving home and saw no less than five dogs in a two block trip, all of whom were walking their people!  If this sounds familiar, here’s a great tutorial on 7 Ways to Improve Walking your Dog on Leash from Eric Goebelbecker, CPDT trainer and owner of Dog Spelled Forward training school. Take a look around for more useful training videos and articles.

The contest is over for heavenly Benevolent Biscuits, the only dog biscuit I know of that is hand baked by Monks.  Congratulations to the winners (prizes will be sent from the Abbey via UPS on Monday.) Stay tuned, there are more contests coming up!

Enjoy your weekend!

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14 comments
Greta
Greta

I do agree that P&G is a big company interested in profit and they certainlly would have not bought Natura if there was no profit in this niche. So this is my main concern, P&G will try to maximize the profits but the question is will this effect the quality of Natura products?

Stephanie Feldstein
Stephanie Feldstein

Thanks for linking to the article on the P&G Boycott Day. It was definitely disappointing to hear about Natura acquisition while writing about their history of cruelty around Iams/Eukanuba. I have to say, I'm in the camp of skeptics that the brand will retain any integrity under P&G. I also wrote about the hairmats on Change.org...What an amazing (yet simple!) innovation! It's nice to have some positive news around the oil spill.

greta
greta

I'm really not happy with Procter and Gambler buying Natura. I've been avoiding P&G products for a while now (because of the relentless teasting on animals) but I like Natura too. So, this will be a difficult choice to make!

Marsha Mack
Marsha Mack

Your article was excellent! I don't blame you for posting, the word needs to get out loud and clear about the harm that many commercial dog foods can do to your pet. Studies have shown that kibble can contribute to gluten intolerance, which also contribute to obesity and type two diabetes since it doesn't digest very well.

ecodogboutique
ecodogboutique

The article on: The Friday Five: In Defense of Kibble was a very interesting read, this reminds me very much to one of your posts (The Fight Over Pet Food vs Pet Food Safety ). This has been a highly debatable topic but I believe that more and more dog owners (pet owners in general) are becoming more aware of the negative effects that kibble has on your dog's long term health. It tears a dog's digestive track to shreads little-by-little. I for one am all for organic, all-natural and homeade dog food recipes as you already know from my response to your recent post regarding this topic :)

egoebelbecker
egoebelbecker

Pretty annoyed with the purchase of Natura. Innova was one of the kibble brands in my "rotation." I was wondering about the microbes for eating up oil spills too. Thanks for the shout-out!

Jim
Jim

Quite interesting about the use of human and animal hair to sop up oil. I just read yesterday about a material called Aerogel that Nasa originally developed to catch comet dust. This stuff is the least dense, most insulating substance on earth and has practical applications for cleaning up oil spills. Unfortunately Aerogel is not yet being manufactured on a scale big enough to help with the Gulf oil spill. Thanks for the mention Mary. =)

Edie
Edie

Wow. Your first item is a shocker. I guess we'll have to wait and see but I'm not confident that the Natura brands will retain their integrity -- or, I should say, their roster of high-quality ingredients. But the best case scenario is that this is a PR move by a company that wants to burnish its image among better informed dog consumers, people who know that Iams/Eukanuba are not embraced by the canine cogniscenti. And if that's the case then maybe they'll leave well enough alone. Thanks for the mention of my dog food post and for all the other interesting links you provided here. By the way, I love the idea of monk-based biscuits being sent UPS from an abbey! Talk about a collision of worlds...

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  1. […] had a segment a couple of hours ago that answered a question I posed, whatever happened to the oil-eating microbes, in the comments area of the post mentioning dog hair being used in booms to stop the oil from […]

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