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I've been wanting to get a jar of those meat sticks for Lily for a few weeks, to try as treats, but I'm a bit leery...The ones at the store near me (I don't remember the brand, if it was Gerber's or not) all have onion powder in them. I keep thinking that we're supposed to avoid giving foods with onion powder in them...Should I try to find a different brand of meat sticks with no onion powder in them? Or is it okay for them to have the meat sticks anyway? I just don't want to get anything that could hurt her. :?
 

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Cooked onions/onion powder is safe. The warning is raw onions because it is known to cause hemolytic anemia in some species.

Vienna Sausages ingredients:

Ingredient List: Mechanically separated chicken, pork, water, salt, corn syrup, hydrolyzed soy and potato protein, dextrose, hydrolyzed casein and whey protein, flavoring, sodium erythorbate, sodium nitrate.

Gerber chicken sticks ingredients:
finely ground chicken, water, calcium reduced dried skim milk, salt, sugar, onion powder, and garlic powder.

I can tell you right now I'd never feed Vienna Sausages to my hedgehogs.
 

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Well, the veinna sausages have a lot more weird sounding things, but they are all pretty innert and normal. Not that I could find that much info on sodium erythorbate at all, but it's not like it's full of a bunch of weird stuff. Feeding them to hedgies should be fine.

That being said, if you can get the other option it's better in that the ingredients are more natural. Not that the less natural ingredients have been proven to be harmful from what I could find.
 

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I would imagine (maybe hope is the word) that the ingredients in Vienna wieners is better than what is in a lot of cat foods.

That being said, I can't stand them myself. Uck!

And no, i have never fed either to my hedgies. But then, I don't think mealworms are too appetizing either. :p
 

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You may be surprised at how a lot of "human" foods contain worse ingredients than some canned cat foods. Look up BHA/BHT sometime. It shows up in a lot of processed human foods.

The gerber chickie sticks contain much better ingredients.

Sodium nitrite, is a preservative. Sodium nitrite reacts with stomach acid and other chemicals in the stomach to produce nitrosamines, which have been shown to cause cancer in animals when consumed in large quantities.

Sodium erythorbate is another preservative. It is used to preserve color. I believe it also helps make nitrites last longer (could be wrong there).

Flavoring, why do we need added flavoring? What flavoring are they adding?

hydrolyzed casein - I believe they use this to maintain moisture in the food.

Corn syrup - often a simple sugar that goes into the blood stream much after than normal sugar causing highs & lows in blood sugar levels. Its most likely added here because it gives the product dampness and flexibility.

All in all, these are not ingredients I want in my food, let alone in my pet's food. Sadly I've seen cat food ingredients that are 100Xs better than this. Foods that are supposed to be made from human quality ingredients too.
 

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Kalandra said:
Sodium nitrite, is a preservative. Sodium nitrite reacts with stomach acid and other chemicals in the stomach to produce nitrosamines, which have been shown to cause cancer in animals when consumed in large quantities.
You mis-read the ingredients. Sodium NITRATE is what is in this food, and that is safe. It's a salt, also found naturally in a lot of leafy vegetables :)

Edited to add: In all, the ingredients in Vienna's food are not harmful. As I said, the other ones are more natural.
 

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Ok so it has one saving grace. However the gerber chickie sticks still contain much better (more natural) ingredients.

According to a hormel label some of that flavoring is actually salt. I bet if you check the labels you will find the chicken sticks to be lower sodium.
 

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I tried to find baby meat sticks (that sounds so awful, lol) at the market today, but couldn't. Would I find them in the regular baby food aisle, or would they be with the refrigerated foods? I think Annabelle might like to try them, though she has refused all of my suggestions so far! :lol:
 

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They will be in a jar in with the rest of the baby food. I usually find them with the stage 3 foods or older baby section.
 

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Regardless whether they "won't kill" my hedgie or not, I wouldn't feed Vienna sausages... yech.

Gerber baby meat sticks, on the other hand... is it too awful to say those still taste good? :lol:
 

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I still don't get why the sausages are being so VILIFIED! Hahaha. Because of a preservative (thank god for that, who wants rotten food), something to add moisture, some sugar, and flavouring. Yeah, the names sound weird but they are NOT odd ingredients. Is there a scientific reason for this, or just emotional reaction to weird sounding names?
 

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knitfreak said:
I still don't get why the sausages are being so VILIFIED! Hahaha. Because of a preservative (thank god for that, who wants rotten food), something to add moisture, some sugar, and flavouring. Yeah, the names sound weird but they are NOT odd ingredients. Is there a scientific reason for this, or just emotional reaction to weird sounding names?
They are odd ingredients. They are chemical manipulations and we don't know what effect they can have long term.

You can have as many preservatives as you like but it's not safe feeding them to hedgehogs, who have a very short life expectancy as it is.

The choice is simple: a safe, whole food with few ingredients or an unknown food with complicated, chemically manipulated ingredients. I'm going with a safe, whole food every time. I also eat the way I feed my animals. Fresh, locally grown, as simple as possible with as few chemicals as possible.

And one other caveat. The Vienna Sausages contain meats that are "mechanically deboned". This means you run the risk of a bone splinter or chunk. Not something I'm willing to do.

Sure, Vienna Sausages are about half the price of Gerber Chicken Sticks. Let's see, if you feed one jar a week (which is a lot), then you are spending .50 more a week. That's 26.00 USD a year. Over the four years of an average life expectancy, that's about 100 bucks. Which is a lot less than what a vet visit to remove a splinter from the mouth will cost.

Just sayin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
HedgeMom said:
Cooked onions/onion powder is safe. The warning is raw onions because it is known to cause hemolytic anemia in some species.
Thank you for clearing this up for me, HedgeMom. I think I'll pick up some of these meat sticks next time I'm at the store then, and see if Lily likes them. :)
 

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HedgeMom said:
Cooked onions/onion powder is safe. The warning is raw onions because it is known to cause hemolytic anemia in some species.
Ok does this mean that I can feed Shelby these crackers she found that she likes?

I know there not "healthy" for her but they wouldn't hurt her right?

There kind of like gold fish crackers but a little different. (I can't remember the name brand or all the ingredients) but the very last ingredient was onion powder. And I would only give her like 1 cracker a few time a week at the most (serving size is like 16)
Like I said I can't remember all the ingredients but that was the only thing I was worried about.
 

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Lilysmommy said:
HedgeMom said:
Cooked onions/onion powder is safe. The warning is raw onions because it is known to cause hemolytic anemia in some species.
Thank you for clearing this up for me, HedgeMom. I think I'll pick up some of these meat sticks next time I'm at the store then, and see if Lily likes them. :)
Thanks for asking the question and the answer. I was going to buy some to give to Ender and saw the onion powder and couldn't remember if I could nor not.

As for Vienna sausages. Blech. I think I saw too many in my lunchbox as a kid, or my friends' lunchboxes, to even want to buy a can much less open one. ;)
 

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HedgeMom said:
They are odd ingredients. They are chemical manipulations and we don't know what effect they can have long term.

You can have as many preservatives as you like but it's not safe feeding them to hedgehogs, who have a very short life expectancy as it is.
I am going to apologize in advance for the hijack of this thread, but I sometimes get a point in my head and really feel that I need to make it.

There is no proof it's not safe. I know that a lot of people are "fresh food, nothing manipulated" but I guess I am not one of those people. The preservative that is so "dangerous", sodium erythorbate, is not dangerous. From a medical dictionary :

<chemical>
This compound is used in the food industry to keep processed meat, such as hot dogs and beef sticks, from turning strange colours. It is chemically similar to vitamin C, which was used for the same purpose before this compound, but only gives the body 1/20th of the vitamin C one would get from taking regular vitamin C. It is made from sugar, commonly beet and cane sugar.

For example, foods on the "good cat food list" contain some sort of chemically maniputated item, just like the preservative above. I just checked "chicken soup" and it has cellulose powder in in. As the fifth ingredient, so it has a lot of it in there. Want to know how to make that?

Cellulose powder is a depolymerized pure celluose fibre like cotton fibre which has been contacted with sodium hypochlorite and caustic soda at 50 degc for aperiod of 2-3 hrs.the reaction changes the physical form from fibre to powder while maintaining its water absorbency,therefore it can be pressed into tablets which will absorb water in the stomach and expand.

WHAT IS THAT? Cotton, chemically treated to absorb water. Chemically treated with what? BLEACH. So it will fill a tummy up more. FILLER. Filler made from cotton treated with bleach. Yeah, "cellulose fiber" sure sounds a lot more innoculous that "sodium erythorbate".

Not trying to be a jerk, just trying to make a point that there is nothing out there as safe as we would all like. I don't think chicken soup is a bad food, but I just wanted to point out that it actually has an ingredient I would consider a lot worse than anything vienna sausages has if I was comparing it from a "natural only" standpoint.

So what do we do? Hunt from the wild and only give our pets meat we raised ourselves, and cooked thoroughly? Not really an option in today's world.

The one thing that makes me feel the other treat is better is the splinter point. I even hate biting into meat that has gristle bits in it, it's disgusting!
 
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