Monday, August 29, 2022

The Dangers Of Red Food Dye In Pet Treats


What is Red 40 and why is it in your pet’s treats?

There is a misconception that cats and dogs see the world in black and white. Research shows that they actually see in a spectrum of yellows and blues. So while they do see more color than we thought, they can’t see red. So why do some pet food manufacturers use Red 40 in treats?

The use of Red 40 dye in commercial pet foods and treats is added to please you—the pet owner who is buying the products. Pet food companies use psychology to try to trick us into thinking that fake bacon or a seafood nugget would be better for our pet if it appears to be a “natural” meat color. There is no nutritional value in Red 40.

Scientific research shows that red dye 40 can cause behavioral problems and hyperactivity in children, can cause allergic reactions in people and can cause immune system cancers in mice. Most laboratory research is done on small animals, so it’s quite possible that red dye would pose the same potential risks to your cat or dog.

There are many healthy dye-free alternative treats for pets. Raw freeze-dried food is a convenient alternative. Since it’s made with real meat, the reddish/brown color is natural. Some pet owners freeze cubes of homemade bone broth and give those as a treat on hot days. Vegetables such as carrots also work well for some pets. The important thing is to please read the label before giving your pet treats!