Are dentastix really that bad?

At Browns we love to promote healthy alternatives to market leading products that we believe do not benefit the health of our dogs. If you’d like to know about these, see our other great blog “Which chew is best for my dog?”

A few years ago you would be hard pushed to find a truly “natural” treat in many pet shops, but from market expansion and information being more widely available, healthy feeding is now becoming more easily accessible and (hopefully) the norm! So why do big companies with access to this knowledge continue to produce and sell us treats that harm our dogs?
Our friends at Pooch and Mutt were way ahead of the trend when they released this study in 2017 (link below) on the ingredients of Pedigree Dentastix. Interestingly, the UK labelling system for pet food is much less restrictive than that of the US, meaning a lot of ingredients can be “hidden” within packaging legal loopholes. We highly recommend looking at these hidden ingredients that Pooch and Mutt have explained in this article, some of which are quite shocking.

What’s the harm you ask, especially if my dog’s core diet is good? Well, possibly no harm! If for example you feed raw and your dog gets a dentastix once in a blue moon, the risk can be quite low. It is the consistent feeding (as Pedigree suggests, one a day!) that will cause the most issues. Among others you could be looking at increased risk of skin irritation, eye and respiratory issues, and even cancer.

When looking at issues like this we encourage customers to look beyond tempting packaging, promotion plugging, and empty statements like “low fat” and “sugar free”, because this does not mean they don’t contain other harmful ingredients such as E numbers and chemicals. Mass corporations like Mars and Nestle have unlimited budgets to suck people in and make them believe that these products are necessary, even implying that “if you love your dog, you will feed them Dentastix.” This is very much reliant on us not reading and not understanding the ingredients they put in, and trusting that if they are on supermarket shelves then they must be safe for our dogs to consume. In fact they are most likely formulated to make your dog “addicted”, both to the one-a-day habit and the chemicals such as appetite enhancers and stimulants they contain (this is also true for cheaper cat foods such as Whiskas and Felix.)

Now that there is so much choice for our dogs, there is no longer a need to support these businesses that are solely fuelled by profit and not passion.
Everything we stock at Browns has been personally researched and tried on our own pets before going on our shelves. We support family owned small businesses- ones like ourselves- that prioritise quality products that are good for our dogs. This is not down to novelty and “jumping on the bandwagon” of natural feeding. It is because we truly believe what we put into our dogs is paramount to keeping them healthy and happy.

If you want to know more about how we can help make your dog healthier, visit us in one of our stores.

The Truth About Dentastix: