Are raw food diets for dogs a great meal plan or just a dangerous fad?
There are many benefits of raw feeding dogs, some of the raw dog food diets are controversial. However these diets are becomming more and more popular with a lot of dog owners seeing the benefits of raw feeding dogs through raw meat, bones, fruits and vegetables.
Raw Feeding Dogs – BARF
The barf diet was proposed and introduced around 1993 by an Australian veterinarian by the name of Ian Billinghurst who came up with the acronym which stands for, Biologically Appropriate Raw Food or the most widely used and common term Bones And Raw Food.
Adult dogs before they became domesticated would survive on meaty bones and vegetable scraps. It has been well documented that Billinghurst thought that commercially made grain based pet food were harmful to the dogs health and well-being.
While this is one vets opinion many other mainstream vets disagree. The many risks of raw diets have been documented through out the internet and in several journals etc published by veterinarians. For pet owners who want to avoid commercial food a homemade raw diet designed by a veterinarian nutritionist is recommended.
What Are The Benefits Of Raw Feeding Dogs
There are many benefits that come with feeding your dog a raw food diet. People who are advocates of the raw diets have said that they see some of the following beneficial changes in thier dogs.
Below are some of the associated benefits of raw feeding dogs;
- Reduced Body Odour.
- Improved skin with a softer and shinier coat.
- Reduced stool size and odour.
- Excellent dental health.
- A stronger immune system.
- Superior joint and bone health.
- A reduction in skin allergies.
- More energy, especially in older dogs which you can read about in a previous article, Best Raw Food Diet Dogs .
Raw makes A Real Difference
I believe that a raw, natural diet is the best thing for our dogs, it is what I feed all my dogs and they are benefiting from this with everything from their coat and teeth to their overall wellbeing.
- BETTER DIGESTION – It can be a lot easier for your dog to digest raw natural food. There are no bulkers or added sugars which are found in some commercially graded pet foods which can lead to digestive issues for our dogs..
- SHINIER COAT & HEALTHY SKIN – To help your dog attain a healthy shiny coat and improve any current skin issues they may have I recommend using the correct quantities of carefully selected healthy fats, vegetables, protein and fruits.
- REDUCED POOP MANAGEMENT – Raw food is 100% natural and as mentioned in better digestion has no added fillers. Because of this there a lot less poop coming out of the back end!
- DENTAL HYGEINE = STRONG TEETH – One of the best benefits of raw feeding dogs is that we get to give our four legged friend raw bones which all dogs love. Bones are a healthy tasty choice that will provide entertainment, fresh breathe and help clean teeth.
Other Reported Benefits Of Raw Feeding Dogs
- A reduction in skin conditions and inflamed joints.
- Plenty of low fat options avaiable to help manage weight loss.
- For older dogs it has shown an increased vitality.
- A great option for fussy eaters.
- No salty additives.
Raw Feeding Dogs – Concerns Overblown
Supporters of raw dog food diets are quick to point out that commercially processed pet foods can contain harmful bacteria, as can raw meat offered for human consumption.
“The whole concern about bad bacteria is overblown,” in my opinion. “When I am feeding my dogs a raw diet I know it’s not sterile, so I am more careful about washing my hands.
Feeding a raw meat diet is no different than cooking chicken for the family … you have to clean up the counter and your knife.”
If all this work seems like a little to much and you would still like to add a little raw to your dogs diet you may want to go with a Meal Topper alternative.
Even veterinarians who support raw dog food diets say that they’re not appropriate for all dogs. Because the diets are typically high in protein, they aren’t appropriate for dogs with late-stage kidney or liver failure.
What is recommended is that dogs with pancreatitis or other digestive issues start with a cooked, homemade diet and clear up problems before switching to raw. Dogs with cancer, on chemotherapy, or dogs with other immune suppressive diseases also should not eat raw food. And puppies aren’t good candidates, either.
“The only place I’ve seen a problem with this diet is puppies. If you don’t get the calcium and phosphorous ratio right, you can have bone deformities and growth issues.”
The Benefit Of A Raw Food Diet By Narla
The benefits of raw feeding dogs is not going to resonate with everyone. My dog Narla who is pictured below is one dog who has greatly benefited from a raw diet.
Narla was on a dry food diet that I was purchasing from my local pet store for the first year or two.
Shortly after her 2nd birthday we moved house and her coat started to lose it glossiness and she was beginning to scratch. We initially put this down to the different house.
After about 2 weeks with no improvement I decided to move her onto raw feed diet which I had used on other dogs in the past.
Fast forward 8 years and her coat and skin are in such great condition that she is lucky to get a bath every few months. There is no more doggy smell to her, it truly is amazing!
Have I Covered Everything?
I hope we have covered at least some of the questions and concerns you may have in regards to raw feeding and don’t forget to check out the other options I mentioned from Yumwoof and Stella & Chews.
If you have anymore questions or would like to leave some suggestions of your own please leave them in the comments section below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
We will leave you with our favorite saying, “May Your Home Be Filled With Love And Dog Hair”
Founder of Our Dogs World 101