Tag Archives: plant-based protein

Dry foods help reduce dental disease in dogs

Dog eating food

Dog owners always have question about whether to feed their pet dry or canned foods.  This can be a daunting decision, given the number of both dry and canned foods.

High quality dry foods can easily meet the nutritional requirements of most dogs.  You will want to check labels for the amount of meat-based proteins the food contains versus grains.  Higher priced dry foods will tend to contain more meat-based proteins than their lower-priced competitors.

The added benefit of dry food is that chewing on it reduces the buildup of plaque and tarter on your dog’s teeth.  Dogs that eat only a wet or canned diet are more prone to dental disease if the diet is not balanced with treats and toys for chewing.  Some dogs – if raised on only canned food – will refuse to eat dry food at all – so it’s important to start your dog early on at least a partial dry diet.  In many cases, we suggest waiting until the dog is of senior age before giving a preponderance of canned foods.

NOTE: The above does NOT pertain to cats who have different nutritional needs.  See other blogs on cat nutrition.

AS ALWAYS, CONSULT WITH YOUR VETERINARIAN ABOUT YOUR PET’S OVERALL HEALTH AND WELLBEING.

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Grain-free is not enough; look for MEAT-BASED proteins in your pet’s food

Grain-free dog and cat foods seem to be the latest pet food fad.  But in our minds, the issue is NOT whether a pet food is grain-free, but rather, what is the SOURCE of the food’s protein content?

It’s best to choose a food that is high in MEAT-BASED PROTEINS.  Meat has always been a natural part of dogs’ and cats’ diets and is easiest for their systems to break down and digest.  Plus meat-based proteins contain amino acids that are essential to your pet’s diet.  However, meat is a more costly ingredient, so you are seeing some companies turn to alternative sources of protein – like corn and soy, both plant-based sources of protein.  They are able to raise the so-called protein levels in the food while reducing costs.

Vegetables or meat for the dogWhile some companies will use plant-based proteins like corn, corn is still a GRAIN that turns into starch and then into sugar – potentially leading to obesity and diabetes.  Some pet foods also contain corn gluten – a low-quality protein derived from corn – which is difficult for pets to digest.  Soy is actually a protein blocker.  So if your pet’s diet contains lots of soy, their body will be more prone to absorb these proteins and not the meat based proteins

You will typically find that many of the lower-priced foods contain a greater amount of plant based protein and less meat based protein.  Always read labels carefully.

Feeding some level of plant-based protein to your dog or cat is okay, however it’s not as healthy as meat-based protein.  And not providing a meat-based diet can lead to an increased chance of allergies and obesity.

AS ALWAYS, CONSULT WITH YOUR VETERINARIAN ABOUT YOUR PET’S OVERALL HEALTH AND WELLBEING.

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