Should You Feed Your Dog a Raw FoodDiet?
Oh diet fads. They seem to extend even to pets sometimes don’t they? Well, that’s being unfair here as a raw food diet, specifically for a dog, isn’t so much a fad as it’s a whole lifestyle change aimed at improving your dog’s overall health. But are the positives enough to outweigh the negatives? And just what are those negatives anyway? Let’s take a look at a dog’s raw food diet and see if it’s the right choice for you and your pooch.
When people say they’re going to put their dog on a raw food diet, what they typically mean is that they intend to feed their dog only food that doesn’t require any processing or preparation, so essentially no cans or bags of dog food. The simplest worry here will come down to whether or not a dog’s stomach can handle that sort of thing, but it is good to mix in some fruits and veggies as those will help your dog get plenty of nutrition.
The biggest perks of the diet is that your dog’s teeth will consistently look better, specifically if you’re giving him raw bones and such as the bones will actually clean the teeth while also strengthening them and the gums. Better dental health and improved breath are always nice pluses to a diet, right? And add to this the reduction of doggie waste and you’ve got yourself a pretty nice combo going. More nutrients means less to get rid of, so what could be the downside?
Well, let’s start with those bones there. While they will help clean and strengthen the teeth, they aren’t exempt from the occasional tooth breaking, which can then make eating rather painful. They also aren’t exempt from bone splinters, which can then be swallowed and cause a lot of pain that way. They can be so dangerous in fact that it’s entirely possible you’ll end up causing severe damage to your dog’s intestines as bone fragments get lodged in there.
Also, as mentioned, your dog can handle a certain amount of bacteria but after a while it becomes too much and they can easily become sick. Plus, going all-raw will place the burden of proper nutrition balancing squarely in your hands, whereas store-bought dog food is designed specifically to provide all the vitamins and minerals a dog needs on a daily basis. It’s not impossible to manage, but if you’re not paying attention and really doing your research, your pup could become seriously malnourished.
It’s odd to think that something as wholesome as a raw food diet wouldn’t be the preferred choice for a dog, but in this case it seems that relying on the cans and bags of food are the better options. This isn’t to say that there aren’t dog foods out there, or that a mixture of the two diets isn’t best. Just make sure to do what’s best for your dog and ensure they’re getting fed what they need!
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