When researchers at Portugal’s University of Porto tested 14 store-bought raw dog foods for the bacteria Enterococcus, they all contained it. What’s more, the bacteria were resistant to the effects of at least three antibiotics that were supposed to be able to wipe them out. It’s not a small matter. These bacteria can cause urinary tract infections, blood infections, heart problems, and meningitis — in people. How would bacteria a dog ate make their way to a person?
Dogs shed the pathogens in their stools. When they come back in the house, they lick their behinds, their paws, and you — thus spreading the bacteria everywhere their feet and tongues go. This is not just theoretical. People have gotten sick from dangerous bacteria in dog food.
Many people like to feed their dogs raw food because they say it gives their pets a shinier coat, makes them more energetic, and satisfies their appetite better than cooked meals. But the same ingredients cooked will confer the same benefits. Since the United Nations says that by 2050 as many as 10 million deaths a year could result from illnesses that are resistant to drugs, it’s something to think about.