Feeding a raw meat diet is more natural and healthier for your dog. Dogs are natural carnivores but can digest many foods, like an omnivore, they are most adaptable to raw meat, vegetables, berries and other foods they would find in their natural environment if we still allowed them to. They come by digested vegetation while eating the entrails of a “kill”, most of that is in the “whole” form or a natural plant source eaten by the original animal.
If a dog chases a rabbit or a bird is it because it wants to play with it? No, it is natural for dogs to eat rabbits, birds and other animals for its diet. Those animals are a critical part of a dogs natural diet, one that it was designed for. Carnivores are designed to digest lots of different foods but not many grains and starches. They can use simple starches like potatoes and apples but not soybeans, wheat, or corn. When was the last time you saw a dog in a corn field eating corn on the cob? Or in a wheat field grazing on the heads of wheat for his meal? I have seen them eat apples and potatoes without prompting and for sure chasing the occasional rabbit or robin in the backyard or at the farm. When it boils down to it we are subjecting our dogs to artificial meals with artificial flavors to get them to eat it. Raw diets need no prompting to eat or are they masked in artificial man made flavors or preservatives that are harmful to dogs.
The intense heat used to process commercial pet food destroys and reduces nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and enzyme.
Studies comparing the source of protein in dry food concluded that the digestibility of meat-based protein is superior to soybean based protein.
Veterinary surgeon and raw feeding proponent Tom Lonsdale states that food from dry or canned commercial kibble sticks to teeth and enables bacteria to proliferate, causing “sore gums, bad breath and bacterial poisons that affect the rest of the body”. Lonsdale further states that dogs lack the necessary enzymes to digest grains and plant material and claims that grains cooked at high temperature can cause starch, proteins and fats to become “denatured or toxic in variable degrees.” The poorly digested grain is said to support toxin-producing bacteria in the lower bowel which may eventually lead to “poisons pass[ing] through the bowel wall into blood circulation” creating further problems in other organs.
Raw dog food is 99% digestible, resulting in smaller stools and increased activity for all organs. (The more they work with less rate of passage, the more blood flow to the organs and longer organ life).
Many cite that the oldest dog ever recorded, a 29-year-old Australian cattle dog named Bluey, died in 1939, several years before commercial pet food was invented, and that, of the two oldest dogs in recent years, one was fed primarily on kangaroo and emu meat.
The purchase of good quality meat from reputable sources and proper food safety practices such as defrosting meat in the refrigerator and not leaving food out for too long can reduce the proliferation of bacteria present in the meat.
Many commercial foods tout that they are made to Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) standards (a volunteer organization, that has no regulation powers). Did you know that students at Kansas State University ground up a old boot and sent it in for analysis and it was selected as a commercial dog food for the market by AAFCO?
How many dogs do you know that have died from natural causes? Most are “put down” because of cancers, arthritis or other conditions. This is the largest reason to feed a RAW diet, what we are putting in our dogs is not making them live longer. We are shortchanging the lives of our pets by feeding them what we are feeding them.
Why feed raw? Do it because you love your pet!