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Dogs, Meat and the planet
#1
Call me a radical greeny but I’ve had to face the fact the production of animal based dog food, especially beef, is yet another nail in the coffin of this planet’s future. Instance, the number of cattle on Earth and their farts is one of the majour sources of methane, a far more detrimental gas for the environment than carbon dioxide. So, having radically reduced my own consumption of meat for similar reason (no, I don’t fart methane!) I’ve decided when my two muts depart the planet I’m not going to replace them. Having had the joy of living with dogs most of my life this is going to be heartbreaking.
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#2
Well, I do think people should take notice that dogs are not strictly carnivores and should eat foods that have more than just meat.

Secondly, I think the methane problem can partly be solved if cattle were fed grass instead of corn. Corn does two things, it fattens the cattle up faster and causes them to produce more methane than they would if they ate grass. These huge farming operations are particularly bad for the planet. Look up Joel Salatin as he more eloquently explains some of this. I do think these huge farming operations aggravate the problem more by their practices, if not this whole thing where they inject livestock with all these antibiotics, steroids, poor living conditions and all the monocultures of corn and other crops.

As far as human flatus containing methane, sometimes... Can learn about farts here... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flatulence

The ugly reality is that I don't foresee there being any significant change coming anytime soon. I don't see people willing to not eat beef, drive cars and so forth. Heck, a number of people can't be bothered to put their garbage in a trashcan and simply toss it out of the window. Cigarette butts litter along the highways along with all sorts of garbage...I never understood why people do this and apparently it's more than just a few, even caught someone tossing crap out the window on my dashcam.

Of course we can go all day in the many ways humans are screwing the planet. That being said, I think it is great to do something to reduce emissions although on an individual level probably doesn't make any difference but does bring more awareness so on the optimistic side of things perhaps that will equate to where things will be done more sustainably or perhaps the world will get away from its obsession with beef...or perhaps gas powered cars too.
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#3
(05-31-2021, 04:34 AM)InbetweenDreams Wrote: Well, I do think people should take notice that dogs are not strictly carnivores and should eat foods that have more than just meat.

Secondly, I think the methane problem can partly be solved if cattle were fed grass instead of corn. Corn does two things, it fattens the cattle up faster and causes them to produce more methane than they would if they ate grass. These huge farming operations are particularly bad for the planet. Look up Joel Salatin as he more eloquently explains some of this. I do think these huge farming operations aggravate the problem more by their practices, if not this whole thing where they inject livestock with all these antibiotics, steroids, poor living conditions and all the monocultures of corn and other crops.

As far as human flatus containing methane, sometimes... Can learn about farts here... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flatulence

The ugly reality is that I don't foresee there being any significant change coming anytime soon. I don't see people willing to not eat beef, drive cars and so forth. Heck, a number of people can't be bothered to put their garbage in a trashcan and simply toss it out of the window. Cigarette butts litter along the highways along with all sorts of garbage...I never understood why people do this and apparently it's more than just a few, even caught someone tossing crap out the window on my dashcam.

Of course we can go all day in the many ways humans are screwing the planet. That being said, I think it is great to do something to reduce emissions although on an individual level probably doesn't make any difference but does bring more awareness so on the optimistic side of things perhaps that will equate to where things will be done more sustainably or perhaps the world will get away from its obsession with beef...or perhaps gas powered cars too.
My dogs are fed a mix of meat,vegetables, rice or oats, kelp powder and fish. I don’t feed them soy bean products because they’re riddled with carcinogenic insecticide residue, the largest percentage grown in areas where the Amazon Rain Forest has been cleared. Same goes for the largest percentage of soy beans consumed by humans.

’I've witnessed the unhealthy effects of raising dogs as vegetarians. If deprived meat many puppies never recover. 

This isn’t a simple isolated issue though.Take for instance farmed Atlantic Salmon; toxic beyond belief. 

As to sufficient of our own species changing their behaviour in time to prevent our extinction, until recently I was comforted by the thought I’d be leaving the planet beforehand. Given I’m still here I suspect I may be around to witness the removal of everything but cockroaches from the surface of Mother Earth.
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#4
(06-01-2021, 08:33 AM)Karl Rand Wrote: My dogs are fed a mix of meat,vegetables, rice or oats, kelp powder and fish. I don’t feed them soy bean products because they’re riddled with carcinogenic insecticide residue, the largest percentage grown in areas where the Amazon Rain Forest has been cleared. Same goes for the largest percentage of soy beans consumed by humans.

I only brought that up since apparently some brands in the US that are touted as being better quality, or organic aren't balanced....Now I don't have dogs so I'm not quite up and up on food or dietary requirements.


(06-01-2021, 08:33 AM)Karl Rand Wrote: As to sufficient of our own species changing their behaviour in time to prevent our extinction, until recently I was comforted by the thought I’d be leaving the planet beforehand. Given I’m still here I suspect I may be around to witness the removal of everything but cockroaches from the surface of Mother Earth.

Well, if there's one thing I have learned is that there is no predicting the future.

That being said, I do think it is in good nature to be more mindful about consumption...especially in this country. We take far too much for granted.
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#5
Being a vegetarian this decision is not really relevant to me, but I wonder if anyone has thoughts on switching to lab grown meat. I came across an article in The Guardian stating it is now a reality. The following quote is from the article.(The article can be found under a search for lab grown meat)
"Cultured meat, produced in bioreactors without the slaughter of an animal, has been approved for sale by a regulatory authority for the first time. The development has been hailed as a landmark moment across the meat industry.

The “chicken bites”, produced by the US company Eat Just, have passed a safety review by the Singapore Food Agency and the approval could open the door to a future when all meat is produced without the killing of livestock, the company said."
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#6
@calgor I do think from an ethical perspective that would be a good thing... It is something I need to look more deeply into as to how it is produced and how sustainable that actually is. I should think that it would have less emissions than raising cattle for slaughter.

As far as meat consumption. I think if the animal is fed appropriately (i.e. cows eat grass) and raised on a pasture that is not over crowded, etc (think humanely) then the meat is going to be of better quality and therefore better for you. I don't think consuming red meat or other meats are bad for you. Although processed meats (think bologna) not so much.

So the "lab meat" does address the ethical side of things, after all if we no longer need to slaughter animals for food then we shouldn't. This also addresses a fairly significant amount of greenhouse gases but I don't know at this time what the lab meat does on that front. Lastly, is it any good? It it safe? Healthy? How often are we going to hear about contamination?
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#7
(06-01-2021, 09:45 PM)InbetweenDreams Wrote: @calgor I do think from an ethical perspective that would be a good thing... It is something I need to look more deeply into as to how it is produced and how sustainable that actually is. I should think that it would have less emissions than raising cattle for slaughter.

As far as meat consumption. I think if the animal is fed appropriately (i.e. cows eat grass) and raised on a pasture that is not over crowded, etc (think humanely) then the meat is going to be of better quality and therefore better for you. I don't think consuming red meat or other meats are bad for you. Although processed meats (think bologna) not so much.

So the "lab meat" does address the ethical side of things, after all if we no longer need to slaughter animals for food then we shouldn't. This also addresses a fairly significant amount of greenhouse gases but I don't know at this time what the lab meat does on that front. Lastly, is it any good? It it safe? Healthy? How often are we going to hear about contamination?
Sadly the expectation that animals being raised for food will be treated humanely in this day of corporate farming is a pipe dream.
From a 2019 article in The Times of India

"Lab-grown meat is more eco-friendly as compared to regular meat. It eliminates the need for livestock, which could reduce the use of energy by as much as 45%, reduce the use of land by 99%, and produce up to 96% fewer greenhouse gases. It will also be animal-friendly as no animals will be harmed or treated unethically. Moreover, it will significantly reduce the amount of water usage, as the standard production of just half a kilo of meat requires around 9000 litres of water, as compared to 94 litres required for cultured meat."
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#8
There’s one problem with running down industrial scale meat production. What happens to cattle when they no longer have any economic value? We could easily end up with a situation such as India’s where cattle are seen as sacred yet wander the streets and villages with nobody providing medical care, often dying slow and painful deaths. I’ve witnessed this ‘cattle are sacred’ approach when in India and it’s horrifying.
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#9
@Karl Rand Certainly a possibility. Although I don't think lab grown meat is going to suddenly take over. However, what I would most likely expect is farmers getting hit hard, bankruptcy, selling off their livestock or simply killing off what they can't afford to deal with. And like @calgor mentioned about humane treatment probably less of that. If lab grown meat becomes the norm I imagine real beef might become a fine delicacy, kind of like how grass fed, grass finished beef is. That's right we have to pay through the nose to get beef from cattle that were fed a normal diet.
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#10
(06-01-2021, 11:27 PM)Karl Rand Wrote: There’s one problem with running down industrial scale meat production. What happens to cattle when they no longer have any economic value? We could easily end up with a situation such as India’s where cattle are seen as sacred yet wander the streets and villages with nobody providing medical care, often dying slow and painful deaths. I’ve witnessed this ‘cattle are sacred’ approach when in India and it’s horrifying.
Given that most cattle are slaughtered at a young age, if an alternative did become viable it's unlikely that alternative would replace all meat immediately. As a result most cattle in the pipeline would still meet their fate in the slaughterhouse while presumably breeders would not continue churning out cattle without a market for them. And yes I understand this opens a whole new question about what happens to those who make a living breeding animals for food. As @InbetweenDreams pointed out, it's likely a cottage industry would grow up around the production of natural beef free of hormones and antibiotics and whatever other crap is put in animal feed similar to poultry farms which have chosen to produce only free range eggs rather than growing for the corporate poultry industry.
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