The “best all natural dog treats” is a relative statement—it depends on what one considers “all natural” to mean. Dog treats labeled “all natural” may not actually be up to consumer standards of what should be in their dog treats. The term is applied to numerous foodstuffs; however, “all natural” does not have a consistent definition. This can be confusing and misleading to customers who want the healthiest and best treats for their dogs.
In the United States, the terms “all natural” and “natural” are widely used in food labeling and generally offer a variation of definitions. The brands imply that dog treats are made with minimally processed ingredients. In reality, the terms “natural” and “all natural” (as in all natural dog treats and other foods labeled as such) tells the consumer little or nothing about the product. This is due to the FDA’s lackadaisical approach in developing a true definition for the terms “all natural”, and derivatives of the term “natural”.
However, the FDA has applied a very basic guideline that suggests no artificial flavors, synthetic substances ,or added colors be used in any food labeled “all natural” or “natural”, including both human and dog food. So what constitutes artificial flavors, colors, and substances? The definition from the FDA is unclear. Many synthetic ingredients are allowed to be used in the food production industry—even in products called “all natural.” Therefore, the use of “all natural” and “natural” is misemployed on labels, public notifications and advertisements.
Fundamentally, nearly all foodstuffs are derived from natural plant products and animals. So, any definition of “natural food” results in an arbitrary exclusion or inclusion of food ingredients. Since virtually all foods are processed in some way, either mechanically, chemically, or by temperature, it is difficult to define which types of food processing are actually “natural” or “all natural”.
It is the by-products of these animal and natural plant products typically used as the main ingredient in products labeled all natural dog treats. It is well known that by-products are just that: the unusable waste products not fit for human consumption and in many cases not fit for any consumption. Therefore, dog treats labeled “all natural” or “natural” are, in fact, substandard by admission.
This is not to state that manufacturers are altogether at fault in labeling their products “all natural dog treats“. In actuality, it is the FDA’s terminology of the definitions and allocation of these products that are the offenders. Technically, there is no significant difference between all natural dog treats and natural dog treats except an integral effort and undertaking of a manufacturer to be the exception to the rule. Even with the most ambitious intentions in producing quality “all natural dog treats” from ingredients considered “all natural” or “natural,” it is an empirical task.
To ensure you are buying the best “all natural dog treats” look for products labeled “organic” dog treats. The terms “all natural” and “organic” are NOT the same, and have completely different meanings. The FDA has strict standards for the use of the term organic. All ingredients are produced by strict industry standards and ingredients must be certified organic to be labeled “organic”. The best “all natural dog treats” or “natural dog treats” are the ones labeled organic dog treats. The organic treats are made with healthy, human-grade, certified organic ingredients. That is as “natural” as it gets.