Quality ingredients equal healthy and happy pets

Pets are a cherished part of our families.  While we don’t normally set a place at the dining table for them, it doesn’t mean they should be served foods made from ingredients unfit for human consumption, such as meat that’s not good enough for hot dogs.

“You want your pets to thrive, not just survive,” explains Barbara Fellnermayr, president of Burnaby’s Amoré Pet Foods. “It’s the same with your kids. Nutrition is their foundation.”

Fellnermayr’s first exposure to raw pet food was when she was the manager of animal control for both Vancouver and Coquitlam’s no-kill shelters; Amoré donated food for dogs that had skin and other medical conditions.

“I saw first-hand the difference it made to the health and well-being of the dogs,” she says. “We had every stripe of dog come in—over 4,000 per year—and never knew what level of health they had. The one’s with skin conditions were very apparent, you could see the problem.”

“Some dogs were picked up right away by their owners; others were kept for six months or more. The quality of food made a huge difference in their health. With no chemicals added, and real ingredients—it’s all human grade—the results were simply phenomenal. Real food cleared up skin conditions in a matter of weeks.”

Later, Fellnermayr ended up purchasing Amoré and continuing the company’s commitment to producing all natural, raw/frozen food for dogs and cats. She developed the air-dried food in 2010, as a direct result of the Olympics and difficulties getting food to downtown locations.

“I see a lot of TV commercials for pet food which say their list of ingredients starts with meat,” Fellnermayr says. “But it’s not real meat. It’s meat meal, such as fins, feet, beaks and feathers, which is pounded, cooked and processed so much that any of goodness that was there is gone.”

Fellnermayr says she often gets calls from meat suppliers, usually fish companies, telling her they have “pet grade” products. “They try to sell me the heads, skin, bones and fins,” Fellnermayr says. “I decline, because when I buy salmon, it’s either filets or whole salmon.”

Amoré doesn’t use pre-ground meats. Once it’s ground you don’t know what the fat content was or what else was added. “We buy whole meat cuts and grind everything in-house. We can see exactly what the composition is,” Fellnermayr says.

“Meat, vegetables, extra virgin olive oil and kelp. There’s nothing else in our products. There are no additives, preservatives, flavourings, colourings or synthetic ingredients.”

That focus on quality has earned her loyal customers from Victoria to Newfoundland, and even as far north as Inuvik.

The average price of Amoré’s frozen food is $6 per pound, with most dogs requiring about two per cent of their bodyweight in raw/frozen food each day.

While it is an increase over the cost of kibble, Fellnermayr says the resulting health benefits are evident. You get what you pay for.

“I have no vet bills,” she says. “I have a 17-year-old dog named Sassy who runs around like she’s less than a third of her age. Most of our customers think she’s five or six. They are shocked when they find out she’s 17.”

Other benefits include no doggie breath, no wet dog smell and poops that are firm and don’t smell.

“Since the food is so nutritionally dense, you feed less, so there’s much less output and less to clean up,” Fellnermayr says.

Bring your dog to Amoré Pet Foods’ store to check out their free tasting bar.

For more information about how your pet can benefit from a healthier diet with Amoré Pet Foods, visit amorepetfoods.com.

© Burnaby Now