Transparency In The Dog Food Industry

As dog lovers we all want to be feeding genuinely quality food to our pups. So the question is, what is actually in the dog food you’re buying?

Pet Fooled Movie Poster

For the longest time, pet food manufacturers would just ask for our trust. However, as people are becoming increasingly educated on nutrition and manufacturing processes this is no longer enough. And there are the horror stories, like American brand Blue Buffalo misleading it’s customers about their ingredients and Chinese manufactured dog treats being linked to over 1000 dog deaths.

With increased scrutiny from documentaries such as Pet Fooled, companies are coming under pressure to be transparent about their products. People want to know that their dog food is genuinely high quality, and not just marketing hype. 



Our view of transparency is simple: a company should be 100% genuine about it’s product. That means not misrepresenting the quality of ingredients that go into it, and being open to questions and the public. It’s all about honesty and accountability. 

For example, dog food is often packaged with glossy images of juicy steaks and whole chickens. Is that really what is going into the food? The reality is that the majority off the pet food industry is using protein “meal”, a rendered product that is not fit for human consumption. One can only imagine what it must smell like. And if these companies are being honest, a photo of a steak is not the same as the rendered meal contained in the product.

That is not to say that all pet food manufacturers are dishonest, and of course there are some good ones out there. As always, it pays to ask questions. If you are considering a brand of dog food it’s worth emailing or calling them. If you aren’t happy with their response, you have your answer.


Here are some questions to consider:

  • Are your ingredients human grade?

  • Where are they sourced from?

  • Is your meat from ethically raised animals?

  • Is your food balanced to AAFCO and NRC standards?

  • Why does your food have synthetic supplements in it?

  • What proportion of meat is in your food?


Whoa Nelly Kitchen Photo

We consider Whoa Nelly! to be a truly transparent dog food company. We’re proud of our food, so being genuinely transparent is easy!

For instance, we offer a free pick up option from our kitchen while we are producing our food. We receive customers throughout our kitchen session, whatever step we are up to. We are always happy to show people the actual ingredients that make up our food, and answer any questions you might have. We regularly post photos of our ingredients too, so you can see what is actually going into the food. 

Whatever you are choosing to feed your pup, please do your best to ensure that it is good quality. Ask questions, and make sure you are happy with the answers!