Dog Food History – The Early Beginnings

Dog Food Matters

Two and one-half generations of Americans have only seen dogs fed some form of commercial dog food. What these folks may not realize is that widespread use of prepared dog food is relatively new. Until the end of World War II in 1945, dogs were primarily fed table scraps and whatever they could hunt or forage outside.  Prepared dog food was a luxury, a luxury that was actually invented about 150 years ago.

 Early beginnings of dog food

The Dog Cake

James Spratt was an Ohio lighting rod salesman. He found his way to England to expand his market for lighting rods. While walking the docks of Liverpool he was inspired by the dogs devouring “hardtack” provided by the British sailors. Hard tack is a thin cracker or biscuit made of flour, water and salt. Hardtack is inexpensive to make, light weight and resistant to spoilage. It was used sustain sailors and soldiers during…

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