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Vivian's Spring Book Review

The Clean Pet Food Revolution,

How better pet food will change the world

By Ernie Ward, Alice Oven and Ryan Bethencourt, 2020

As a caretaker of both human and non human animals, the need to prepare meals for everyone in the home comes with the role. For me, the role has over time become ethically uncomfortable since others in my family both two and four legged consume non human animals. I now find myself feeling uncomfortable when preparing meals and in my quest to respect others decisions and understand more about the issue I came across this book, The Clean Pet Food Revolution.

As an animal lover and advocate, full disclosure I choose to eat plant based foods for sustenance not because I don’t like the taste of things like say, prosciutto, fried chicken or a T-bone stake but rather simply because I am now aware. After years living and working with animals, studying science and in particular anthrozoology in more depth, I am fully aware that all non human animals unequivocally suffer. Period.

I really enjoyed this easily readable book. Laced with current supporting science, the authors provide a comprehensive overview of the pet food industry as a whole. There is striking evidence as to why animal food consumption is a systemic problem affecting our world. They have done a great job connecting the dots for us. The “shift from considering animals as assets and income sources” to instead “someone” that is recognizing they are emotional and sentient individuals, has also shifted how we care for and what we feed our pet companions. In 2019 it is reported the United States alone spent 30 billion to feed cats and dogs and in China there is a growing trend at growing rate of 2 billion yearly. Demand for animal consumption will only continue to increase as more and more cultures adopt the Western notion of in home living and caring for pet companions. Non human animals are being fed non human animals at an amount that far exceeds what humans eat. This book explores many facets of the pet food industry including sourcing ingredients, recalls and the impact to our anthropocene world. Problem solving begets awareness and this book does just that. There are resolutions which I am confident we will explore and put into practice. And as always, in fairness to all stakeholders there ought to be ethical considerations for both the human and non human animal.


Vivian Zottola, MSc, CBCC

CCBS Research Associate Applied Anthrozoologist | Human-Canine Relationship Specialist Fear Free Certified Animal Trainer BostonK9Concierge LLC | 617-721-8025 H-A Click Therapy for Dogs 90 Day Course


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