OAKLAND, Calif. — Petaluma, a pet care startup focused on sustainability, launched a baked and plant-based formula for adult dogs of all breeds. The company said its mission is to offer environmentally responsible diets that meet 100% of a dog's nutritional requirements and challenge the pet food industry's dependence on factory-farmed animal protein.
The company claimed dogs account for 20% of all U.S. meat consumption, which is equivalent to the 69 million people in California and Texas combined. Replacing animal products for plant-based alternatives in dog food reduces an individual dog's diet-related greenhouse emissions by 75%, freshwater use by 50% and land use impact by 90%, Petaluma said. While cats retained their wild ancestors' carnivorous diets, dogs co-evolved with humans and adapted to make use of the nutrients found in plant-based food scraps of omnivorous human diets.
"As a result of a half-century of creative marketing, there is a common misconception that dogs are carnivorous like wolves and require a diet of animal protein to survive. Fortunately, just like humans, dogs evolved to be omnivorous and have the genetic record to prove it," said Garrett Wymore, co-founder of Petaluma. "As animal lovers, we are excited to create evidence-based diets that allow us to care for the planet and traditional agricultural animals as well as we care for our pups."
The first formula, Roasted Peanut Butter & Sweet Potato Flavor, is designed for adult dogs of all breeds and contains more than 50% organic ingredients and a mix of plant-based protein sources, including organic chickpeas, peanuts, brown rice and yeast. Each cup of Petaluma has more than 33 grams of protein — more than a serving of steak or four glasses of milk. Dogs love the savory peanut butter taste, with two out of three dogs preferring Petaluma over their typical meat-based food, according to Petaluma.
"We carefully formulated Petaluma to provide all of the essential nutrients without the need for animal ingredients," said Dr. Blake Hawley, lead formulator for Petaluma. "As a veterinary nutritionist, the most important factor in evaluating any dog food is to ensure that the formula is well-balanced and complete. Dogs require specific nutrients, not specific ingredients. Petaluma fills an important gap in the market by offering a more sustainable option for pet owners without sacrificing nutritional content."