Should I be worried about bacteria in raw food?
As long as proper hygiene standards are followed and maintained in the food production process, bacteria does not pose a risk to your dog. Dogs and cats are surprisingly well-equipped to deal with bacteria. Their saliva has antibacterial properties; it contains lysozyme, an enzyme that lyses and destroys harmful bacteria. Their short digestive tract is designed to push through food and bacteria quickly without giving bacteria time to colonize. The extremely acidic environment in the gut is also a good bacteria colonization deterrent.
This is why dogs, known scavengers, are able to eat decayed foodstuffs that we consider disgusting and be none the worse for wear, other than maybe letting off a few stinkers or having a bit of a runny tummy. If we ate that we would become gravely ill.
It is important to maintain good hygiene by washing your hands after feeding your dogs and cats raw food, of any food for that matter. And to ensure the feeding bowls are washed and that leftover raw food is not left behind, attracting unwanted pests. Or for little children to inadvertently get their hands on.
We only use meat fit for human consumption, processed in registered and regulated abattoirs. Our fruit and vegetables are purchased fresh from reputable suppliers used by humans. Furthermore, the fermented vegetable component (in our dog food) acts as an extremely effective safety agent, as the probiotics attack unwanted pathogens, prohibiting them from growing to infectious levels. Adding fermented veg therefore, is like inoculating the food against harmful bacteria. No chemicals, no preservatives, only beneficial bacteria.
We add kefir to our cat meals to achieve the same balanced micro environment that the fermented veg brings to the dog food table.
If you’d like to read more we can highly recommend this article by Carissa Kuehn at rawfed.com.