Can my dog or cat get sick from eating raw food?
When many people think of raw meats they also think of the many sicknesses that raw meat can cause to humans (ie salmonella, e.coli), but what they fail to realize is that their pet dog and or cats anatomy is completely differently to our own!
Dogs and cats are predominantly carnivorous. Their systems are designed to handle and thrive on raw meat and have evolved over thousands of years doing so.
There’s a couple of reasons why this is…
First, the hydrochloric acidity levels in their stomach is about 10 times stronger in concentration than that of any human, meaning anything that goes into their stomach cannot survive (including germs and or bacteria).
Secondly, their gastrointestinal tract is very short in comparison to humans. This means any food that goes in through the mouth passes via stool in a matter of hours rather than days, giving any potential bacteria no chance to get settled in.
Think about what your dog or cat would be eating if for some reason they were stuck in the wild? Mice/rats, rabbits, birds, possums etc. They wouldn’t be waiting for a human to catch and cook it for them either! So I’m sorry to say, but your dog or cat was not born different to his brothers and sisters and ‘cannot handle raw meat’ they are all the same. Some may have preferences in taste or how WELL they handle it (solely kibble fed pets take a bit longer to adjust), but they are all the same on the inside.
Having said all that, salmonella or e.coli can still infect pets, but it is extremely rare, and would usually be brought on by poor hygiene, not washing bowls where bacteria is thriving, eating poop etc.