BARF à la Carte – The menus adapt to each animal

It all started with the arrival of a mongoose in the life of Sarah Soares dos Reis and her sister. Commercial feeding options for these strict little carnivores, with a life expectancy of seven to ten years, did not exist and preparing their food in a homemade way was mandatory if they wanted to respect the biology of the little Moochi and ensure their health.

“At that time there were no set rations. Cats were used, which had pills that caused a fatal disease. So we started seeing recipes online on how to develop natural food. Moochi lived 13 years,” said Sarah Soares dos Reyes. for PiT.

Years later, this food logic has persisted and is cross-sectional with all the pets in the family, from turtles, ferrets, and dogs. Along the way, as they were applying this type of BARF – biologically suitable raw food – to their animals, some friends and family also asked them and requests grew.

From there to creating BARF à la Carte in 2016, it was a step up. “The idea for the rolls actually happened on my couch,” Sarah, who is the founder of the company, explains.

Sarah attended the natural eating group. At that time, there were no companies dedicated to this topic 100% and the amounts demanded by the current brand were high. “For a month, the food was about 250 euros for a dog weighing 30 kilograms.” In addition, it was a simplified diet, which used only two proteins. “The ideal is to rotate as much protein as possible so that at the end of the week we have an optimal and varied diet, and give the animal everything it needs to be healthy.”

Seven years ago this was the flaw: One company was limited in what it offered and it was expensive. So many people started saying online that they wanted this food, but didn’t feel ready to prepare it. There was already the Internet, of course, but this topic, which had been a niche topic for a long time, did not have all the information available as we have now. We saw that the ideal was to have a company dedicated exclusively to this purpose, with the support of veterinarians. And that’s what we came up with.”

Preventive Freezing

Sarah says BARF à la Carte has a process that makes this food safe: preventative freezing. “A home freezer does not freeze very quickly. We have blast coolers or quick cooling cells that freeze food dramatically and within a few days the food is ready to be consumed without any danger.”

“We humans, when we chew, immediately begin the process of digestion by mixing food with saliva (a digestive process that involves amylase). That is, digestion begins in the mouth. In dogs this does not happen. They tear and crush food, but they do not have a mouth like ours. , with the molars and the morphology that allows for the formation of the food bolus and everything is ground,” confirms Sarah. This means that when they eat the feed, it shouldn’t contain starch (through corn, barley, wheat, etc.), he explains, because they don’t need these ingredients, which alter the pH of their stomachs and worsen disease over time. .

It should be noted that the pH of omnivores is about one and the pH of omnivores is about five. “The dog is a carnivore, but it is not strictly a carnivore. The time that has passed since the process of domestication of the dog has not been enough for there to have been a biological evolution for it to become a lethal. In formation, it remains omnivorous and therefore does not have the ability to make amylase and this essential component In feed, starch, is harmful to them.Other processed ingredients are of course, says Sarah.

Why processed food?

“All animals are conscious beings and are increasingly being seen as members of the family. So why do we keep keeping them away from processed foods?” asks the founder of the company, with training in animal nutrition and HACCP (a preventive approach to food safety, in which case, food must be respected). Bases – such as vacuum packed and frozen in blast coolers and with ingredients suitable for human consumption).

Sarah recalls that the ration appeared in the first stage with canned meat, in the First World War, to get food to the troops correctly and in conditions. The product was no longer useful after using it, but there was this canned food for animals. Then it started drying out (which is called extrusion in the feed) when the can and any metal became too valuable in World War II to troops to be available for that type of packaging, he explains.

“These are economic and social consequences that extend to pet food. Products and technologies were created that, when rendered obsolete due to these same conditions, had to be channeled and transformed into other profitable products. The concept of feed came from the need to sell the product and make use of the technologies created. “.

The food was comforting, easy and dry. “But our ancestors actually fed their dogs rice, vegetables, and giblets, their food was not cooked. They ate in a natural and similar way to ours. The mistake that happened in the kibble is this amylase process and all the chemical supplements in the kibble claiming to be complete. The dog does not lack resistance to the disease that will be infected It has the most acidic organism. And BARF (very similar to the keto diet) food allows this, and the dog is more satiating, hydrated, and stable.”

Help Doki customize the menus

And what does it consist of, specifically, BARF à la Carte? The principle is to create a diet that is biologically suitable for each animal. That’s why it’s for everyone, whether they’re dogs, cats, rabbits, turtles, or rodents.

The idea for customizing the menus came about when one of the family’s three dogs, the Duke, showed a certain resistance to the liver, a common ingredient and major component of the Barf’s diet. “Everyone is an individual and will have a digestive upset if they eat more than 2% of their liver.”

For this reason, the company not only creates menus, but also adapts them to each animal. There are 14 general menus, but in dogs who start this diet later in life, in dogs that are less healthy or with other characteristics, follow-up is essential – and even in transitioning to this diet, this is essential.

BARF à la Carte, which consumes items seasonally and uses organic produce, is in the process of relocating its premises so it has more control over the ingredients it uses. “We are going to move to a farm in Mafra so we can produce our own vegetables and herbs,” says Sarah, who has been a fan of BARF and RAW foods for over 15 years.

What distinguishes these two concepts? Basically, BARF is biologically suitable and tries to replicate what would happen in nature. “When the wolf attacks the prey, the first part it eats is the organs – herbivores eat berries, fruits, herbs, etc. Wolves end up eating vegetable matter, in this case it is already fermented by gastric juice. Thus we cook the vegetables lightly so that the fibers are broken down To some extent, this results in a repeat of this stomach process.Sarah explains that RAW has no vegetables which is why it is all raw meat.

How was the reception from the people? “Very good. More fans of this food conquered,” says the founder.

“At first, the dog was often very sick. We had a Beagle who was given a maximum of three months to live and with our food — a ketogenic diet tailored to his problems, a diet developed by vet Jacqueline Motta — he ended up living another three years. , says Sarah.

“The first generation of our quadruple customers was the old and sick dog brigade. They were owners desperate to save their animals. They had already tried everything. In this second generation, the first dog owners make conscious choices for their new friends and come to us soon, because they realize the difference this diet has made in their Their sick animals. They want a conscious choice from the start.”

And this choice is due to the fact that the evidence speaks for itself. To that and to the word. Our customers are our calling card. When an animal reaches a slightly shorter life expectancy, we often make it live a little longer by reprogramming the food. And the result obtained is the best evidence that it works in many cases.”

Scroll through the gallery to learn more about BARF à la Carte and its concept.

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