MUENSTER, Texas — Taking a different approach to “dry January,” Mitch Felderhoff, president of Texas-based Muenster Milling Company has pledged to eat nothing but Muenster-brand dog food for 30 days, including the company’s kibbles and freeze-dried diets and treats.

Muenster Milling has historically processed all kinds of animal feed products, including ostrich feed, but is currently focused on extruded pet foods, freeze-dried diets and treats, and extruded horse feed. The family-owned company will see its 88th year in business this April.

“We're always trying to find new ways to educate our customers and audience,” Felderhoff says about his decision to take up a dog’s diet. “One of the things we decided was, we were being very boring. Pretty much everyone says the same thing: ‘Our foods have the best ingredients, made in the best facility, by people who care.’ We wanted to sound different and feel real.”

Felderhoff said he won’t eat anything but Muenster brand dog food for 30 days in a row — for breakfast, lunch and dinner — and largely “right out of the bag,” as he puts it. “Some will be reconstituted, and some will be cooked after reconstitution,” he explains.

He won’t supplement his diet with any other food items, unless they are Muenster products. “If we don't make it, it doesn't go on it. No seasonings, no sauces, just dog food and treats,” Felderhoff adds.

His bold diet challenge raises the question: is it nutritionally safe? According to Felderhoff, eating dog food is healthier and more complete-and-balanced than a typical human diet.

“Honestly, it's more nutritionally complete than 95% of what most people eat. When you consider over 50% of our population is overweight/obese and chronically ill, the human diet isn't ‘winning,’” he argues. “From a vitamin/mineral standpoint, I'll probably get more on our dog food than I do with human food. The human diet isn't a complete and balanced when we're eating chili dogs, french fries, tofu and fake meat.”

One of the main goals Muenster hopes to take away from this challenge is the opportunity to educate its customers on how the dog foods can be prepared to create a mealtime experience. “We'll be showing customers how we can heat some of the product for the dogs as well and ‘create a meal at home for the dog,’” Felderhoff says.

“A big part is creating educational videos to go along with the process. At the end of the day, Muenster will not sell any dog food or treat to our customers if we haven't eaten it ourselves. We stand behind our brand,” he says.

When asked what his family thought about the endeavor, Felderhoff said, “They didn't really believe me until I hit day two. The kids think it's absolutely hilarious and gross but, really, we're all having fun with it… until they start eating pizza and burgers in front of me.”

Felderhoff is sharing his dog diet journey on several social media platforms, including Instagram, Facebook, TikToc and Youtube. Check back in 25 days to hear more about Mitch Felderhoff’s #30daysofpetfood challenge.

For an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at Muenster’s pet food operations, read our processor profile and view a slideshow of its facilities.

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