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Things to consider when choosing a plant-based diet
As plant-based eating become ever more popular in the human population we are seeing more and more plant-based options for our dogs too. So, can dogs be vegetarian?
Many people believe that dogs are carnivores, but dogs are actually omnivores like humans! This means that they can derive all the nutrients they need from foods of both animal and plant origins. So yes, they can also be healthy eating plant-based foods!
It is always important for our dogs’ nutrition to be correctly balanced, whether feeding a plant-based or traditional animal-based diet. If feeding a commercially prepared complete food, this should be done for you. You can ask your chosen brand how often their food is tested to ensure the correct balance of nutrients and amino acids for health and vitality. It is more difficult to make home prepared plant-based nutrition which is correctly balanced – as often amino acid supplementation is required. If you need help with this please do get in touch!
Whether feeding a purchased vegetarian or vegan food or a home prepared option you should monitor your dog for signs that this choice does not suit them. There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to feeding your pets and another option may be a better fit for your canine companion.
Any changes in your pooch can potentially point to nutritional deficiency. In this case veterinary advice should be sought and nutritional changes made to ensure your dog is getting all the nutrients they need from their food.
If feeding only vegetarian food doesn’t suit your dog, or you are worried about deficiency in your pet it could be possible to feed a combination of vegetarian and traditional food. Try adding some meat or wet food to a vegetarian kibble or alternate the foods chosen for different meals or days.
In summary, yes! Dogs can thrive on plant-based nutrition, but as with any food, you should keep an eye on your dog to ensure that the nutritional choices which we make for them are the best for their overall health.