All about AllAboutDogFood
AllAboutDogFood.co.uk is intended to be a one-stop-shop for anyone interested in their dog's diet. It includes the world’s first interactive dog food and dog treat directories as well as the first dynamic dog food comparison page. Our comprehensive feeding guide, dog food FAQ and dedicated dog food forum also give dog owners access to a huge amount of impartial nutritional advice.
Most importantly, AllAboutDogFood.co.uk is fully independent and all of its tools and info are available completely free of charge.
My name is David Jackson and this is my trusty border terrier, Ned and together we run AllAboutDogFood.co.uk. I take care of design, coding, research, creating content and all things nutritional and Ned is in charge of keeping me sane.
My background in brief: I graduated with a zoology degree back in 2002 and was taken on as a nutritionist by Burns Pet Nutrition in South Wales. I was trained in-house to help pet owners to deal with health problems through diet, formulate pet food recipes, quality control and so on. In 2008 I became the head nutritionist at The Natural Dog Food Company in Lincolnshire where I worked until 2011.
Over that time I was able to work with a whole host of amazing pet experts from vets and behaviourists to groomers and breeders to help thousands of pet owners to make the right dietary choices for their four-legged friends.
Crucially, I was also able to engage in all sorts of secondary roles within the industry - roles like marketing and sales that opened my eyes to the intricate connections between product formulation, pet health and company profits.
Work started on the site in 2011. From day one I was determined that the site would be 100% independent and transparent so I immediately severed all working ties with pet food manufacturers and ceased all forms of paid consultation. The first version, called WhichDogFood.co.uk, went live on March 10th 2012 and, it has to be said, went virtually unnoticed, at least for the first few months. With no advertising budget, it took what seemed like an age for word to start to spread but once it did, there was no looking back!
For the first couple of years, every spare minute went into expanding the database and developing the site and after a while, when it became clear that it was going to be much more than a simple product finder, the name WhichDogFood just didn't seem to cut it anymore. I have always been all about dog food so picking the new name wasn't difficult.
Now in 2020, AADF is the UK's number one pet feeding advice site. Over 130,000 people from more than 150 countries worldwide visit the site every month and, with your support, that number is growing all of the time. Of course, with over 8 million dogs in the UK alone, we still have a very, very long way to go so please keep spreading the word and if you have any suggestions for the site or if you spot any inaccuracies at all, please be sure to let me know.
The big question - how is the site funded?
As much as I would love to be able to live on good will alone, running the site is a full time job and it does need to pay its way. Nevertheless, site independence and integrity has always come first and no money that could call that into question has ever been sought nor accepted.
There's a detailed breakdown of how the site makes money over on the FAQ page so be sure to check it out.
I want to change the world. I accept that this probably comes across as a bit delusional but I really do believe that through little nudges we can all make a huge difference. With this site, I hope to change the way people buy their dog food, which will force the industry to change its ways and make our dogs' lives a whole lot better. Brace yourselves, it's about to get a bit philosophical...
For far too long, pet food manufacturers have been able to get away with producing, frankly, awful foods for our pets. Somebody once said "don't blame the player, blame the game" and never has that been more appropriate. The game here is corporate capitalism and there is only one rule - make as much money as possible. The companies best able to cut costs while maximising income reign supreme and while that might work in other industries, it is not good news for our pets. The combination of low grade ingredients and elevated prices has been such a recipe for success for the 'The Big 3' pet food corporations that most consumers aren't even aware that alternatives exist. And what's worse, the health problems that are often linked to low grade foods are now so widespread that many pet owners just disregard them as a normal part of a dog's life. So many dogs are living short, problem-filled lives and nobody's blinking an eye.
But things can change.
As with any game, the key is understanding the rules. Making as much money as possible depends on selling products which makes the consumer, that's you and me, king! By unveiling the enormous variety of foods out there and by letting people know what makes one food different from another and what effects those differences might have on their dogs, dog owners will, for the first time, be able to choose what's right for their dog instead of what's right for corporate profits. And as more and more people change to better foods, the entire industry will have to move to catch up and before we know it, our dogs will be as healthy and as happy as they deserve to be!
I have always been an optimist.
If you have any questions, comments or criticisms, or if you would like to contribute to AllAboutDogFood.co.uk in any way, please get in touch here.