The pet food industry continues to follow the latest trends and hopes to influence pet parents to buy certain brands. There have been so many food recalls over the past few years it’s now more important than ever to stay on top of what your dogs eat! Consider raw diets for dogs.
What should you know about raw diets?
Our staff did some research on the benefits of raw diets for dogs. This diet is still controversial and many vets aren’t yet on board but a lot of pet parents are big fans and our staff recommends raw diets to many of our customers.
Some things you should look for? Research the brand, ingredients, AAFCO statement, and the guaranteed analysis.
Whole Dog Journal talks more about this in their article about freeze-dried raw diets. We always research the sourcing (where are they getting the meat from) to make sure it’s biologically appropriate and that’s it’s completely balanced before choosing a brand. Here are some tips:
- Determine how your dog’s digestion is generally speaking before transitioning to a raw diet.
- Do you know if they have any allergies that should be avoided or proteins your dog does better on?
- Speak to your vet and always transition to a raw diet from kibble by mixing it with the regular food and increasing it over time (5-10 days).
- Your dog should be able to make a gradual transition without any digestive issues. Also, watch your animal’s stools to determine if they’re loose or if your pet is uncomfortable.
- A raw diet typically consists of organ meats, muscle meat, whole or ground bone, raw eggs, fresh fruits and vegetables, and some dairy, such as yogurt.
Here are 12 benefits based on research and personal experience.
1. Healthier skin and coat
Shiny healthy coats is a major benefit of feeding raw diets. Thanks to those omega fatty acids!Raw diets are known to help strengthen the immune system. So nutrition plays a big part in healthier skin and coats. These omega fatty acids help keep inflammation down which keeps itchy skin from occurring.
2. Improved oral health
Feeding a raw diet to your dog prevents dental disease which is the cause of everything else (e.g. heart disease).
3. Increased energy
Some experts say their dogs have better concentration with commands and less hyperactive yet more energy. This is a reason many breeds benefit from this diet. Mealtime is the best time of the day!
4. Healthier stool
Smaller stools are not a myth. You’ll be stunned after feeding raw at how small the stool was after a few days. And in addition to smaller stools, they are less pungent smelling and typically much firmer than stools you’ll see on a kibble based diet.
5. Better weight management
A raw food diet is low in calories, high in fiber, and based on primarily healthy whole-plant foods, so eating this way will lead to weight loss.
6. Improved digestion
Digestive enzymes break down food so that it can be absorbed and utilized by the body. Raw food contains abundant enzymes which supplement those produced by the body. When your dog eats raw food it receives plenty of enzymes from the natural ingredients, hence there is no need to add any supplements. When dogs eat cooked food, which is devoid of enzymes, the enzyme-producing organs must work overtime to compensate.
7. Reduced allergies
You may also consider a diet of natural raw foods that provide the pet with a variety of meats and vegetables, keeping their bodies nourished and their immune systems strong. In the end, a pet with a strong immune system will have a better chance of fighting off allergens without the need for medication.
Frozen raw diets are convenient. These diets are packaged into shapes such as patties and nuggets that make them simple to thaw and serve. It’s easy to travel with freeze-dried brands.
9. Serving is easy
The patties or nuggets can be easily divided into serving sizes for your dog or cat, so there’s no need to thaw large amounts in the fridge. Meaty bones are also available and every dog enjoys these for a meal.
10. Frozen or thawed
There are so many types of raw diets you can consider for your dog or cat. There is dehydrated, freeze-dried, and frozen raw diets available now and each has its own advantages.
11. Many vets now embrace raw diets
Many vets now support raw feeding and a holistic or integrative vet can work with you on a diet that is customized for your pet.
12. Enhance raw diets with supplements
Yes! Ask our staff about raw goats milk or Kifer, Answer’s Fish Broth along with Green Juju, and bone broth.
- Answers Fish Broth – Answers Pet Food offers unique raw products, new raw forms, and innovative green packaging. Their fermented fish stock is an excellent source of nutrients for your pet.
- Juju – Staff often match this supplement to folks reporting that their dogs love to snack on the fresh green grass. A healthy way to fill the tummy at mealtime or between meals for extra hungry dogs.
- Goats milk – This is digestion support for all! Also, a great way to add some calories for underweight fur friends.
Always come and talk to us about your dog’s nutritional needs so we can help you decide which raw food diet and protein makes the most sense for your dog. Nothing is more important than your dog’s health!
If you’re interested in the brands our stores carry, our staff can walk you through the best options for your dog or cat. Here’s an article on the raw food diets we recommend.
Do you have a cat? Read Feeding Cats a Raw Food Diet: is it Safe?
Disclaimer: Please consult your vet before making any drastic dietary changes to your pet’s diet. Our staff are not vets or holistic vets.