Is raw food actually good for dogs?

The American Veterinary Medical Association opposes the unregulated feeding of raw food and advises against “feeding cats and dogs any protein of animal origin that has not been first subjected to a process to eliminate pathogens, due to the risk of disease for cats and dogs, as well as to humans. Feeding your dog a “Barf” diet (meaning “bones and raw food” or “biologically appropriate raw food”) has become popular in the United States in recent years, and now many UK pet owners are considering it as well. Dog owners who support a raw diet claim that it promotes a brighter coat and healthier skin, better energy levels and fewer digestive problems. Raw food supporters claim they offer numerous benefits to dogs, including more energy and healthier teeth, skin and coat.

Torres says there isn't much evidence demonstrating the benefits of feeding pets raw food, but there is evidence of health risks, such as exposure to pathogenic bacteria. Raw food enthusiasts claim that the diet has given their pets more energy and healthier skin and coat. Bones from a raw food diet may be good for your dog's dental health. And the meat is denser in nutrients, which makes the stool smaller.

The basis of your dog's raw diet is proteins and fats. This makes up most of their food. It's as simple as buying ground beef or pieces and putting them in your dog's bowl. As carnivorous scavengers, dogs can survive on dead food, but a biologically available raw diet will ensure they thrive.

Raw dog foods are often considered one-size-fits-all, so age-specific or size-specific formulas are not common, but some dogs need some modifications to ensure they receive the right nutrients for individual needs. Studies cited by the AMVA (American Veterinary Medical Association) have found listeria and clostridium in raw food diets. Feeding raw allows you to regain control of your dog's nutrition by eliminating mysterious ingredients and synthetic additives and replacing them with highly digestible nutrients from fresh, real food. Your dog's digestive system is destined to break down raw or minimally processed material, regardless of commercial frozen dog foods that have been adapted to eating over the past century.

While it's possible that your dog was poisoned by eating raw meat infected with Salmonella, dog food brands E. Raw like Instinct Raw Dog Food offer life-stage options to help take some of the guesswork out of starting. In recent years, many pet parents have begun to adopt a fresh diet consisting of homemade food or sometimes completely raw food. Feeding an all-raw diet, such as K9 Choice raw dog food, doesn't mean you can't add more nutrients to your meals as needed.

Some believe that their dog's overall health, and especially its coat, would benefit from a raw food diet. One way to know if store-bought dog food meets these standards is to look for an AAFCO label on the bag, which stands for Association of American Feed Control Officials, says Meindl. Some raw foods offer options for smaller pets that are prepared in portions the size of kibble or 1 ounce. Raw diets are calorie-dense and easy to digest, allowing you to feed smaller portions and provide better nutrition and energy to your dog.

For years, many pet owners have turned to raw dog food diets as solution food, and the results have been staggering. Ian Billinghurst published a book on how dogs would thrive on an evolutionary diet that would sustain them before they were domesticated, which consisted mainly of raw meat, organs, bones and vegetables. Taking meals out for 2 to 3 days and storing them in an airtight container in the fridge overnight will be the safest way to defrost your dog's raw food. .

Lance Bujarski
Lance Bujarski

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