Acorn Dog Training


Are you falling for clever marketing techniques?

Good Citizen Tests

Over recent years, some people within the veterinary profession have tried to prevent me from revealing what I, and a growing number of trainers, behaviour specialists and vets, already know about the pet food industry. As a result I have lost some of my training and behaviour referrals, but I make no gains from the sale of dog food. My only motivation is to provide you with enough information to enable you to make an informed decision as to what you are feeding your dog.

More recently another vet told me "I think these companies really do have our animals best interests at heart". Make up your own mind by reading the information which I have provided on this page:

The Meatrix

Over the years I have witnessed DRAMATIC changes in the learning abilities, and behaviour of dogs, very soon after a diet change has been effected. I have also seen dramatic improvements in the health of my own dogs, therefore I feel that I would be failing in my duties towards you and your pets by not speaking out.

To my critics who keep telling me how wonderful things are within the pet food industry, and how I have been 'easily mislead' by "a few dodgy internet sites". How do you account for the information provided below, which in itself is just a droplet from the top of an almighty iceberg?

"Many Labels on Foods Misleading"

SANDwiches anybody?

Genes Can Be 'Changed' By Foods ~ I have been saying this for a long time. This raises the question as to why certain large corporations seem hell bent on genetically altering life on this earth?

Here we are not talking about pet foods!!!! Pet foods very often contain the word "derivatives" on the ingredients list. How many more sins do you think the word derivatives conceals? As John Lennon wrote "Living is easy with eyes closed".

Talking of living with eyes closed.... some people like to walk around with the eyes wide shut, and accuse me of being a "zelout". I certianly do not spend time gathering information as a matter of fun, but out of real concern for both humans and animals, who are developing more and more auto-immune related conditions, and tumours (myself included on both counts)! The link below, concerns school meals, Ms. Kelly, the Education Secretary states: "And those are foods that, for example, are meat products that are made from reconstituted meat slurry that bears no resemblance to the original product."

Again - this is being fed to our kids! AND the pet food industry hides a multitude of even greater sins! When are the veterinary profession and others going to WAKE UP?

JUNK food to be banned in schools (but not from your veterinary surgery)

Raw Meaty Bones Support and Action Group ~ this site is an absolute MUST read!

The sections and links below should help you reach a good understanding of the truth concerning commercial pet foods versus biologically appropriate foods. It is then up to you to decide what is best for the health and welfare of your own dog. Some of the information and evidence provided is extremely distressing. I have therefore labeled the links accordingly.

Should you be a representative from a pet food company reading this page, providing your company can fully guarantee that all of the products used are:
• entirely fit for human consumption at the point of production/sale.
• Contain no traces whatsoever of animal/vegetable derivatives, Soya, cereals, chemicals, binders, fillers, digest, "special gravy" rancid oils and grease.
•Do not use the words "wholesome" and "natural" to describe foods which contain highly refined cereals and grains, or "no ADDED BHA/BHT and Ethoxyquin" when you know that the ingredients already contained these chemicals prior to manufacture.
• Have not carried out obscene experiments on dogs and cats (or any other animals in the name of "healthy nutrition")..... or shared in any of the research carried out by the IAMS (Eukanuba) company. Click here for more information (and check out the links further down this page).

If your company reaches this criteria and you can provide supporting evidence, then please contact me, so that I may add your details to this site. We require the truth please, and not just marketing


Good Foods
Landywoods Raw Meats
Nature Diet
- Please do not mistake this product, or the product on the link below with "Natures Best" from Hills, they are totally different in almost every respect.
Natures Menu


Anglian Meat Products

Jeff's Tripe
Fresh Start

Note: Should you find your dog develops digestive problems as a result of changing to one of these more natural diets, then please ensure that you have rested your dogs stomach from one day to the next. Remove all other foods, DO NOT TRY MIXING in your attempt to effect a diet change. The more natural diets are not designed to be combined with mixers or any other brands. Also, because the ingredients are either biologically appropriate, or closer than most other brands, it is very easy to over feed. These foodstuffs are highly nutritious by comparison to many other brands. The feeding guides on the packets are to be taken as rough guides. A 27 Kg Irish Setter would have different nutritional requirements to a 27kg Labrador. The body will expel anything which is surplus to requirements. So please do be careful, and cut back if and when required. If you dog has suffered a gastric upset, try adding a good pro-biotics powder, available from all good health food stores.

I personally do not feed my dogs any dry kibbled food because of the cooking processes and because some of them contain copper sulphate (which cannot be handled by humans unless they are wearing gloves and a mask) but these kibbles are certainly much better than many others:

Natural Dog Food Company
Burns Real Food
Arden Grange

Flint River Ranch
- human-grade dog and cat food. U.S. Product

Healthy Dog Treats

Canine Kitchen Dogs treats made with 100% human grade ingredients. According to my dogs, these are just great.

The Dog Deli I have tested their gluten free muffins on my hyper-sensitive dog and have been very impressed ~ as was he!

The Barkery also produce some very healthy dogs treats, again tried and tested by my own pack who wanted to raid the trade stand and take the lot! What better recommendation? These treats are just perfect for dogs who have wheat allergies/sensitivity.

UNHEALTHY Treats...... Grapes and raisins ! Do NOT feed grapes and raisins to your dog. You never know if it will happen to your dog: There are reports from around the world of dogs going into renal failure after eating them. Some survive, many do not.

Scooby, whom I have known since our puppy classes, right through to agility and flyball training is one such unfortunate. Scooby decided to steal some grapes from the table. He became an extremely poorly dog for well over 2 weeks, walking a tightrope between life and death. Scooby's mum would like this drawn to the attention to as many people as possible. Nobody appears to understand the reasons why this should happen, although there are many theories, which certainly in Scooby's case, appear unfounded.

If you are a member of a veterinary practice then I beg you to stop and think about the nutritional needs of our pets. Go beyond the marketing spin and hype you receive from the reps who visit your surgeries and whose courses you attend. Just because a company spends x amount on research and advertising each year does not necessarily mean that its products are superior. All it means is that they are having to work harder to sell their product! All I am asking is that you will become open minded and take the first step towards seeking the truth. The truth may surprise you, but you owe it to your clients - the people who pay your wages. Moreover our beloved pets and most of all - you owe it to yourself to become a more enlightened human being.

Perhaps if you are not convinced, you would take the trouble to answer a question for me? I suffer with a number of endocrine problems, including adrenal insufficiency, and Celiacs Disease. How come that when I have my regular checks with the Professor of Endocrinology in Oxford, or routine checks with my G.P, I am not offered a special diet which has been "scientifically formulated" for my condition? I have asked if there is something available for me, and both the Professor, and the G.P have given me blank looks when I have requested such a product. Why is it, that if I happened to be here in teh form of a dog, or a cat, I would be offered this "special" treatment from the veterinary surgeon? If you can answer this question, perhaps you could email me by clicking here.

I will publish any replies I receive.

The Hidden Link between Vets, Universities, and Pet Food Companies

Is there also a link between pet food companies and drug companies? Judging by this article, I would not be at all surprised. The same cartels are bound to be behind both.

Campaign for Real Truth in Medicine (veterinary science and animal care)

Commercial Foods Are The Best? Not according to this veterinary surgeon. - An in-depth read for those who would like to know a lot more

SO WHAT'S WRONG WITH PET FOODS? Many of the sites below are in the U.S. However some commercial pet foods available in this country are manufactured in the US:

The Pet Food Industry and its Questionable Practices
Which commercial pet food

The Dark Side of Recycling: Shocking information. Not for the feint hearted or those with a queasy stomach. Rendering Plants - what are they? What do they do? How are these linked to the pet food industry?

What's Really For Dinner? By Tina Perry

The Pet Food Industry and its Questionable Practices
~ New link

Things You Need To Know About the Pet Food Industry
FAQ's Raw Feeding -
exploding the myths
Wendy Volhard
Information on Natural Feeding
What's in pet food -
this site will set you thinking (US)
The truth about pet food -
extremely disturbing (US)
Poisons in pet food
another really interesting site
Pet Foods - Our Pets Are Dying For It -
extremely disturbing (US)
Good Tips from Doggie Door
Dog Supply -
The Nutrients Your Dog Needs With the Taste Your Dog Craves!
The Animal Advocate
Dogs and Chocolate do NOT mix ~ not even the chocolate buttons especially made for dogs it seems.

Food and Your Pets The Key to Good Health
~ An Article By Catherine O'Driscoll of Canine Health Concern

Articles From Nature Diet
of particular interest is the downloadable document "Nature Diet Ingredients -vs- other Pet Foods. Well worth reading.
Vet's All Natural
Canine Health Concern
a very interesting U.K site. The views expressed concerning vaccination are not entirely my views, although this is an area which deeply concerns me.
Everything You Need To Know about petfoods
Contents of Pet Food (
What's wrong with commercial pet foods?
What's right? more like it!
Dog Food Comparison list:
U.S site but plenty of brands which are available in the U.K - learn the truth about what they put in here.
More information on rendered pet foods - including those which contain traces of Pentobarbital - used to euthanaise animals

The Truth about Pet Food

Caber Feidh - a great site, join the forum too

The Pet Guardian

Food Pets Die For

Pet Food - What's In It?

Holistic Animal

It's In The Bag!

Outcry Over Pets In Food

Mad cow meat didn't enter the human food chain. It was sent for pet consumption! Nothing to worry about then! I can just hear my critics now "oh, but this happened in Texas so there is nothing to worry about over here". Hmmm, so some of the major brands on sale in the U.K aren't manufactured in the States right?

IAMS - The darker side of pet food - extremely disturbing (U.K)
(U.K Site)
More About IAMS
Big Fat Corporate Lies - Yet more on the IAMS scandal


And Again!!!!
This company is only going to change when YOU the consumer make it plain to them that enough is enough. What message are you sending this company when you opt for the "convenience" of the supermarket shelves? Don't our pets deserve far more than this?

IAMS Nutrition Violations. A scientific diet? or using science to turn the inedible into something which will sustain the dog and give a healthy "appearance".

LATEST NEWS ON IAMS From Uncaged Campaigns

Uncaged news release 18 November 2005.


Top PET FOOD company in shock pull out from Cat Show after animal testing shame

IAMS have pulled out of the Supreme Cat Show - the ‘Crufts’ of the cat world. IAMS’ shock decision to cancel their booking for the first time follows a persistent, peaceful campaign by animal rights group Uncaged, in protest at IAMS’ cruelty to animals in lab tests.

Following their revelations of IAMS experiments on cats and dogs in 2001[i], which made front page news in the national press, Uncaged have organised an international campaign and held information stalls at the annual Show calling for a boycott of IAMS pet food. Every year, the enormous and lavish IAMS stand has struggled to sell their tainted goods, as cat lovers harangued the firm over the suffering they have inflicted on cats and other animals. Now, Iams have thrown in the towel!

This development represents another David v Goliath victory for Uncaged. IAMS are part of the US-based multibillion dollar firm Procter & Gamble, who spend more on advertising in the UK than any other company.

Uncaged will press on with the boycott IAMS campaign with an educational stall (stand G19) at this year’s show, which is held on Saturday 19th November at the Birmingham NEC. The grounds for the boycott remain: for example, it has recently emerged that IAMS are funding a university laboratory to breed cats for disease experiments.[ii]

Dan Lyons, Uncaged Campaigns Director, comments:

‘We’ve persisted with a compelling ethical case, backed up with documentary evidence of IAMS’ cruelty, to persuade cat guardians to shun IAMS. The bottom line is that IAMS mutilate, disease and kill animals for the sake of selling their pet foods. For years, IAMS has tried to cultivate this market as a key way of promoting its products. Now, despite their increasingly desperate attempts to whitewash their cruel research practices, they seem to have admitted defeat in the face of a growing boycott and with their reputation in tatters. This is a heart-warming victory for conscientious ethical campaigning over ruthless greed.’

The pressure now increases on Crufts organisers, the Kennel Club, to dump IAMS. Despite IAMS’ cruel experiments on dogs, the Kennel Club continues to allow the company to sponsor Crufts, which takes place in early March.

For more information, call Dan Lyons 0114 2722220 / 07799 117695.

Notes for editors:

·Uncaged is a leading UK animal protection organisation. The peaceful campaign group specializes in biotechnology, ethics and UK laws on animal research.


[i] For example, IAMS researchers cut open the stomachs of 28 cats to analyse the effects of feeding them fibre. The animals were operated on for at least two hours and then killed. (Bueno A. R. et al, "Feline colonic microbes and fatty acid transport: effects of feeding cellulose, beet pulp and pectin/gum arabic fibers", Nutrition Research, Vol. 20, No. 9, pp. 1319-1328, 2000.)

[ii] See p18 of document at:


IAMS - the pet food division of US-based multinational Procter & Gamble - has made a public relations announcement about its laboratory-based animal experiments that claims to represent a “major advance in dog and cat welfare”. In fact, this announcement seems specifically designed to achieve the opposite effect by heading-off pressure on IAMS to stop its cruel research practices. These moves are part of a steady stream of continuous inaccuracies that has been the hallmark of The IAMS Company for many years.

American animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) have put forward a proposal calling on Procter & Gamble shareholders to vote today to ban all harmful laboratory testing on all animals (not just dogs and cats) for the development of the company’s ‘IAMS’ and ‘Eukanuba’ pet food brands. True to form, P&G are recommending that shareholders vote against the proposal.

Suppressing the truth

IAMS has claimed that “it will move all of its dog and cat feeding studies from external contract labs and university research centres by October 2006.” Instead, IAMS will double the capacity of its own testing operation in Dayton, Ohio. We fear this move will prevent whistleblowers from revealing the true nature of IAMS’ experiments, as IAMS will be able to suppress information about its experiments more easily when they are in-house.

Although at first glance the IAMS’ statement may seem like a significant positive step, a closer look at the wording of the announcement proves revealing. Firstly, we strongly suspect, judging from IAMS responses, that the term ‘feeding studies’ does not cover all their laboratory animal experiments. IAMS also continues to indirectly fund a vast range of cruel and lethal animal experiments through sponsorship of vivisectors and grants to research departments. Secondly, as usual this announcement refers only to dogs and cats - when pushed IAMS do admit that they are still conducting lethal experiments on other animals. IAMS has awarded $195,140 to study muscle atrophy in mice at Purdue University. The torturous experiments involve forcing the animals’ muscles to waste away by suspending them by their tails for weeks or months at a time. The research is scheduled to continue until June 2006.

Distress of captivity

Even IAMS has quietly admitted in earlier statements that, in addition to the actual experiments themselves, keeping animals permanently captive in ‘kennel’ environments causes distress: In a 2001 Petfood Industry Electronic Newsletter, IAMS’ senior vice–president of research and development Diana Hirakawa conceded: “The lesson learned here is that kennel studies are not an appropriate way to test feeding guidelines because most kennels represent a high-stress … environment. Naturally, in such an environment, dogs may need to consume more food than they would in a home setting.”

Credibility gap

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in the UK has disassociated itself from IAMS following Uncaged’s revelations that the company had falsely claimed to the charity that they did not conduct experiments on dogs and cats.

When Uncaged first exposed IAMS cruel experiments back in May 2001, the company announced an end to lethal experiments on dogs and cats. In March 2003 PETA published the results of an undercover investigation that exposed IAMS as liars – 27 dogs were killed during an IAMS study. Other cruel procedures, such as surgical debarking by cutting the vocal chords, and lack of decent housing and veterinary care, were also exposed, in direct contradiction to IAMS’s public statements. Given IAMS have been prepared to lie in the past about their animal cruelty to protect their profits, can we confidently believe anything they say anyway?

For more information about IAMS/Eukanuba see: and; and Procter & Gamble see:

SO WHAT CAN YOU DO TO ENSURE YOUR DOG RECEIVES THE VERY BEST? Near the top of this page I have listed the foods whose manufacturers guarantee that nothing is added to the ingredients which shouldn't be, and who manufacture using human grade food, as opposed to feed grade or worse. For those who would like to go a step further, please study the links below.

BARF Australia. The Website of Dr. Ian Billinghurst - A Vet who stands apart from the brainwashed herd and refuses to tow the corporate line.

Raw Meaty Bones Support and Action Group

Learn how easy it is to feed a raw diet - By Jane Anderson

Feed Bones to My Dogs another useful guide to raw feeding

The Raw Food Diet

Case Studies
If you care to take a look at the photograph of the German Shepherd below, you will be looking at just one dog who has been aided beyond my wildest dreams by a dietary change.

When I first met Kim, this photo would have been impossible. There was no way on earth that she could be brought close to other dogs and look so relaxed.

When we first met, I noticed that Kim's eyes were literally rolling around in their sockets. She was very fidgety in her home environment, but when she got outside into the street - she was an unbelievable nightmare.... all hell broke loose. Heads turned at the sight and sound of a banshee dragging her owner in all directions. There was just no communicating with this dog. At this point she was being fed a cheap, popular and easily available brand of food.

As a first step in her recovery I recommended a change of diet to Nature Diet, knowing this to be one of the (if not the) cleanest commercial dog foods available in the U.K. However, the petshop manager persuaded the owner to try a different brand (Nutro) which itself is extremely good. A dramatic change in Kim's behaviour occurred as a result, and at this point we were able to commence a behavioural modification program. After several more weeks, Kim was still causing her owner a great deal of grief and frustration. However, the icing on the cake came when Kim's owner changed the food over to Nature Diet lamb. It was as though a veil had lifted, and for what was probably the first time ever, Kim was able to begin interpreting the world around her.

Today Kim has plenty of canine and human friends. She is not completely cured of her problems, as it looks as though she has some other physiological disorder. However, she is now very manageable, friendly, is able to walk along the street without shrieking and leaping about. Had I been prevented from telling Kim's owner about dietary effects upon behaviour, the chances are that she would have been returned to the shelter she was acquired from, or perhaps even worse.

Kim's mum has added her own comments here:

As Kim's mum I would just like to say that without Fran's timely advice on diet Kim's future with me was hanging in the balance. I had struggled with her outrageous behaviour for 4 1/2 months and really felt like I was losing the battle. I called Fran in desperation, and Fran did a home visit, took one look at Kim and said "change her diet", which I did, and within a week she was a changed animal, within a fortnight, you wouldn't know she was the same dog.

You might be interested to know that the continued problems after changing her diet, where in fact caused by an allergy to chicken, so when changed to a lamb diet, her behaviour improved dramatically again.

Kim has been with us for 20 months now and I wouldn't be without her, it's hard to believe that she was a monster that I was thinking of getting rid of.


5/1/2003 - I often have people come to me and say "my vet says that I shouldn't feed my dog a raw diet including meaty bones, as it can cause problems and perhaps kill my dog. I must only feed those which are recommended as they have been scientifically formulated by people who know best, and the companies have spent vast sums of money researching the product, therefore they must be better". Well, this morning a Jack Russell brought himself along to watch (and interfere) with our agility class. When he realized he had outstayed his welcome, he set off across the fields.

As we were about to leave, we heard squeaks coming from the neighboring field. Then out came the Jack Russell, proudly carrying a hare (which was about the size of himself), and proceeded along the lane back to his own area where he lay down and consumed his catch.

Who is going to tell this Jack Russell that this diet is bad for him and that he must only eat what has been recommended by the vet, the scientist and the food marketing rep? Somehow, I doubt this dog is happy eating from a can or a packet, he obviously has his own preferences AND it is freely available and merely a trot away.

Amanda who lives in Milton Keynes and brings her young dog to our classes writes:

So onto our new addition................
Ben is a 10 year old boxer, rehomed with us almost 4 weeks ago through the Home Counties Boxer Welfare. He is a real softie and he and Winston get on so well, you would never believe they haven't always been together.
The day we got him we went to the vet for a check up and his Vaccinations. Ben was a little under weight and quite old in his movements, along with a greasy, dandruffy coat and bad teeth. We bathed him with medicated shampoo, cleaned his teeth and put him straight onto nature diet and you wouldn't believe he was the same dog. He put on 2.5Kg in the first 2 weeks and has now levelled off (although still eats every meal as though it's his last!). If there was ever a testament to what you taught us about diet being fundamental to a dogs mental as well as physical well being, Ben is it.

Papia and Darren arrived at my agility classes with their 4 dogs, 2 collies and 2 Irish Setters, hoping to do agility. I immediately realized that the dogs had nutritional imbalances, and suggested a diet change for them. The dogs were fed a dry commercial food, which claims to be "100% natural" (but isn't listed on this site, as the company refused to answer my questions regarding the quality of the ingredients) and the two setters were quite overweight (stuffed full of carbohydrates). Since changing their diets, the two setters are now in superb condition, and one of them has just started his agility training and is promising to make a very good agility dog in future. Papia says "This food has revolutionised the lives of our dogs". They changed their dogs diets to raw meat from Landywood Pet Foods.

New Article: Fiona, who contacted me regarding dog behaviour problems, has kindly written an article for this site, which you can read by clicking here.

Would you like to add your own experiences to this website? If so please email me with your story. These articles need not express the opinions of the owner of this website. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and it is up to you to do your own research and to draw your own conclusions.

TELEPHONE 01908 661533

79-85 High Street,
Telephone 01604 832702

Suppliers of heathly dog foods including Landywoods Meats

Special Promotion: HUNGRY HOUNDS. A New home delivery service serving Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Oxfordshire and parts of Surrey and Hampshire, click here for further information, and to find details of their website.

Monsanto drops plans to introduce GM wheat for humans, "Instead, the company will concentrate on genetically engineered soya beans and corn, which can be used for animal feeds or for oil - products not so emotive or so immediately identifiable with a particular human food." So these companies have our animals best interests at heart eh?

A couple of years ago, I remember saying to my vet that one of my dogs felt unwell for a few days after he had been treated for fleas. The vet said that he didn't know of any reasons as to why this was happening. Now perhaps someone has discovered the answer?

Note: Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to be able to view this document:


More about Flea Treatments and other matters
BLOAT (gastric torsion) -
a terrible way for a dog to die. One of my setters died as a result of this condition, and what was found in his stomach? Swollen kibble!


We are being sold a lie. A complete and utter illusion. It doesn't end here with our pet foods. How far does it go? How deep is the rabbit hole? It transcends every area of our lives. We are now being ruled by fear, manipulated into accepting things we would never have previously accepted, all in the name of the "war on terror".

Click the sites below and start to wake up. The more of us who wake up, the less power there will be to those who are abusing their positions.

Propaganda Matrix


They tell us he is mad, "the son of God - wears purple - and a complete nutter". Why would they want us to believe this? To keep you away from the truth of course.

David Icke has been exposing the planned world government for a number of years now, going into places where most of us would fear to tread, and all in the name of putting out information. This is all David Icke does. There are no belief systems, nobody for you to dress up in purple and to follow. He merely puts out information which you can either take or leave. One thing to bear in mind.... this "nutter" Icke has been saying for a decade that after a manufactured war with Iraq, the next stage will be an attack on Iran and then China. Don't believe it? then stay tuned to the Blair Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and watch it all unfold.


Trailer for David Icke's Brixton Academy Talk in May 2006


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