Rodney Habib, TEDx NSCC Waterfront, 2016
|Occupation||Internet blogger, animal activist|
|Years active||2011 - Present |
|Planet Paws (Facebook Page), Dog Cancer Series (documentary)|
Habib opened Planet Paws, his pet store in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia on October 15, 2011. In 2012, he posted a digital image and write-up on his Facebook page of all the separate ingredients that compose a typical bag of commercial dog food; the post received half a million shares overnight.
One of his most popular posts was about rawhide chews and has been shared over 1 million times. It was followed by a video on how rawhide is made which has been viewed over 45 million times, and raised awareness of the chemicals and processes used in the creation of some rawhide chews. These video also resulted in one veterinarian, Patrick Mahaney, stating rawhide toys can be safe to use, and only chemical free rawhides should be considered.
In 2014, Habib reportedly argued booster shots for pet vaccines increased risk of immune disorders, whereas medical experts cited large, long-term studies that show the benefit of vaccination outweighs the minimal risk of the adverse immune response. He supports “core vaccinations” for young dogs and remains opposed to booster shots due to his belief that it could increase risk of immune disorders, though veterinary scientists continue to defend giving regular booster shots to maintain immunity.
By March 2016, the Planet Paws Facebook page received national news coverage when an article in the National Post stated the page had over 860,000 likes and was reported to appear in 110 million newsfeeds every six days, and had deeper Facebook reach that Canadian corporations Tim Hortons, Canadian Tire, Air Canada, Cirque du Soleil and Shoppers Drug Mart. By end of March 2016, the page was approaching 1 million likes,. By July 2017 the page had exceeded 1.9 million followers, at which time Facebook administrators informed Habib that Planet Paws had become the most popular pet health page in the world.
Habib is often asked to speak on the topics related to pet nutrition and wellness despite having no recognized advanced training or degrees in animal health or nutrition. In July, 2017, The Chronicle Herald reported that Habib had spent the last few years interviewing experts across the world on how to keep your pets safe and healthy with much of the information to appear in his upcoming documentary, releasing "The Dog Cancer Series: Rethinking The Canine Epidemic." in fall of 2017.
- Brownell, Claire. "The Wizard of Paws: How a Halifax-area raw pet food store built one of Canada's biggest Facebook followings", the National Post, March 10, 2016
- Gillespie, Claire. "Your Dog’s Favorite Treat May Actually Be Endangering His Life", Readers Digest, October 5, 2017
- Neporent, Liz. "Dog Owners Wade Into Vaccine Debate" ABC News, June 11, 2014
- "Dog Owners Wade Into Vaccine Debate". ABC News. 2014-06-11. Retrieved 2018-08-15.
- Power, Bill. "Hundreds seek Facebook business tips at Halifax event", The Chronicle Herald, January 22, 2015
- "BBC with Hannah Waddingham, Emma Rutherford, Rodney Habib and Anna Webb", BBC, May 7, 2015
- Brothers, Paul. "Pet Nutritionist Rodney Habib", Global News, March 11, 2016
- "IACP Keynote speaker 2017", 2017
- Smith, Amy. "Planet Paws Pet Essentials nearing 1 million likes on Facebook" CBC, March 23, 2016
- "Planet Paws making its mark on social media", The Chronicle Herald, July 31, 2017
- University of Helsinki (2017), “Journey of Longevity.” https://www.dogrisk.com/uutiset.html?87927
- Royal Animal Health University (2017), “The New Generation of Pet Parents.” https://www.royalanimalhealthuniversity.com/what-we-do.html
- Tripping Over the Truth Retreat (2017), “Nourishing The Body While Starving Cancer.” http://trippingoverthetruth.org
- International Association of Canine Professionals Conference (2017), “5 Bio Hacks for a Better Body and Brain.” http://www.canineprofessionals.com/
- Dog Daze Expo (2017), “Hacking the Ancestral Diet.” http://holisticvetexpo.com/?page_id=13
- Natural Dog Conference (2015), “Canine Longevity.” https://naturaldogconference.com/speakers/rodney-habib/
- Masterchops Seminar (2015). “Journey to Canine Longevity.” http://www.australiandoglover.com/2015/10/masterchops-14th-november-2015-melbourne.html