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  • Writer's pictureMandy McHugh

Big Kibble: A Review

I've read a few non-fiction titles this year but nothing quite like this. As an anima lover, though, I read the blurb and found my interest piqued, so I quickly dove in. Big Kibble is a years-long culmination of data about dog feed, the food we give to our four-legged family members, the process by which this food is made, and the economic side of the industry.

Structurally, this book is user-friendly, well-written, and accessible. Each section is mapped out and divided into a presentation that flows, so there's no disjointed feeling of skipping around or backtracking before things make sense. There's a lot of good, relevant information here. I was particularly drawn to the financial aspect of Big Kibble, as I've also wondered how dog food supposedly made with human-grade ingredients could be the same price when one uses lamb and the other uses chicken. Why is there no price discrepancy when the price differs a great deal on the market? I recently read a fiction title that delved into meat processing, and let me tell you, it changed the way I think of offal. Given the context, I found myself questioning whether I knew what was in my own dog's food. There are several facebook posts making the rounds discussing a well-known brand of dog food and treats that made several dogs sick and caused others to become fatal. With so many brands available and little insight as to which ones can be trusted--and even then, why they should be trusted--Buckley and Chavez break down the rationale behind branding, ingredients, and profits and why you can't always take marketing and product description at face value. This is a book anyone with a dog should read. While some parts felt a little anecdotal and long-winded, I appreciated the recipes, personalization, and insight. My own eleven year old lab chow mix will surely be reaping the benefits soon, as I plan on trying several of the recipes included, as well. Overall, Big Kibble is an interesting dive into the pet food industry that strives to put the health and safety of man's best friend first. Thank you to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for providing an eARC in exchange for honest review consideration.


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