The Beginning of Tuggs

September 23, 2022

  • 5 years ago I read about the legalisation of insects for use in aquafeed in the EU and was blown away by the potential that insects possess to transform our consumption habits and pose a viable solution to aspects of the global food crisis. 

  • Last year I began researching the pet food industry and was equally astounded to learn of the strain that pet food is having on our resources, with pet food constituting 25–30% of the environmental impacts from animal production in terms of the use of land, water, fossil fuel, phosphate, and biocides in the US alone.[1] 

  • However, I found that not only does the pet food industry pose an environmental strain, it is also dangerously unhealthy; the majority of dry dog food is void of fresh ingredients, carcinogenic and engineered for a shelf life of up to 2 years without refrigeration.[2] These unhealthy foods are directly responsible for continually increasing rates of cancer, obesity and diabetes in dogs.[3] Meanwhile, recent research has shown that dogs fed a freshly-prepared diet could live, on average, 32 months longer than dogs fed commercial dry dog food.[4] Eating a fresh, varied diet is clearly the better choice for our own nutrition, so why are we not extending this logic to our canine friends? 

  • With these findings in mind, I spent 12 months researching and developing a potential solution to provide dog parents a selection of recipes designed to let their dog thrive, and not just survive, without sacrificing the planet. In the end, I founded Tuggs – a dog food startup creating freshly-prepared dog food in a sustainable way using black soldier fly insects alongside other meat and vegetables. 
Tuggs Meals

  • Tuggs meals are gently cooked as you would in your kitchen using fresh, human-grade ingredients before being frozen to lock in nutrition and delivered right to the consumer’s door. No additives or preservatives ever, with our secret super power (insects) providing a sustainable edge to our product. 

  • Furthermore, our proprietary algorithm and subscription service lets dog parents enjoy personalised health plans for their companions, with tailored meals that help them hit the ideal weight.

  • I will be using this blog to post the research that led me to found Tuggs and hope it can become an interesting area for the discussion of dog nutrition.

  • Best,

  • Harry (founder)

  • [1] Gregory S. Okin. Environmental impacts of food consumption by dogs and cats. PLOS ONE, 2017; 12 (8): e0181301 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0181301

  • [2] The Dog Nutritionist. 2021. “Processed dog food contributes to Cancer” – Fact. | The Dog Nutritionist. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 23 April 2021].

  • [3] Mitchel, Julian. The Startup Delivering Healthy Dog Food Straight To Your Door. Forbes.

  • [4] Lippert, Gérard. Sapy, Bruno. Relation between the domestic dogs’ well-being and life expectancy. 2003.

  • Further reading:

  • Southby, A., 2021. More than half of all dogs in the UK are obese. [online] SurreyLive. Available at: <> [Accessed 23 April 2021].

  • Paws & Claws Pet Medical Center. 2021. Quick Facts About Cancer | Paws & Claws Pet Medical Center. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 23 April 2021].

  • The Dog Nutritionist. 2021. “Processed dog food contributes to Cancer” – Fact. | The Dog Nutritionist. [online] Available at: <> [Accessed 23 April 2021].


This site uses cookies for analytics.

Read our Privacy Policy

Accept Essential Accept All