The Benefits of Natural Foods for Dogs
Increasingly as humans we have become more aware of the benefits of whole foods in our diet. In other words, high quality, natural, preservative free food that is high in nutritional value. We are now seeing more research that illustrates the same benefits when feeding natural food to our dogs.
For example, research was conducted in Belgium between 1998-2002 that looked at the life expectancy of over 500 dogs. They researched dogs fed a homemade diet, consisting of high quality foods used from the owner’s meals versus dogs fed an industrial, commercial pet food diet. The authors, Lippert and Sapy, were able to statistically show that dogs fed the homemade diet had a life expectancy of 32 months longer.
In 2005 study was conducted at Purdue University on Scottish Terriers, the results showed that adding fresh vegetables to dry commercial kibble prevented and/or slowed down the development of transitional cell carcinoma (aka bladder cancer)!
In the study, dogs ate a diet of dry commercial pet food, while some got an assortment of vegetables added to the mix at least 3 times per week. Dogs that ate any green leafy vegetables, like broccoli, had reduced the risk of developing bladder cancer by 90% and the dogs that consumed any yellow – orange vegetables like carrots reduced the risk by 70%!
With the rate in cancer of dogs one in two over the aged of ten, it is little wonder that owners want to do everything possible to ensure they are feeding their dogs the best diet they can.
The Benefits of Natural Diet for Dogs
• High quality essential animal proteins and vegetables
• No preservatives or chemicals
• No fillers
• Better health & wellbeing
• More Energy
• Less inflammatory illness
• Fewer visits to the vet
Lightly Cooked Versus Raw
We lightly cook the majority of our meals because having researched best practice in other parts of the world, we believe it is the best way overall to deliver you the most nutritious food for your dog. The issue with highly processed dog food is the high temperatures that it is cooked at depletes natural nutrients. We also believe that lightly cooking our meals serves as best way of protecting against pathogens, most particularly chicken. However, we do believe that very high quality raw meals can also be very beneficial. We have developed a high quality raw mix (no chicken) that is ideal for highly active and young dogs. Without a doubt we believe that the most important thing when feeding your dog is high quality natural ingredients.
How Much to Feed your Dog?
This is a general guide for healthy dogs and adjustments should be made for dogs with different circumstances, such as the level of exercise they get each week.
Protein in your Dogs Diet
Dogs need protein. That’s because this component of many foods has numerous functions in your dog’s body. It is best known for supplying amino acids that build hair, skin, nails, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and cartilage. Protein also plays a key role in producing hormones and enzymes that help to regulate daily, basic functions.
We strongly believe that natural, quality animal proteins that are produced for human consumption such as beef, kangaroo, chicken and fish provide the best source of high quality proteins for dogs. We only use this level of quality protein in our meals and all meals are made up of 50 per cent protein.
Chicken – High in protein, niacin and phosphorus. Good source of zinc, magnesium and riboflavin.
White Fish – High in protein, low in fat.good source of B vitamins, selenium and iodine.
Beef – Very good source of protein. High in B12, Zinc, selenium, iron, niacin and B6.
Kangaroo – High in protein and low in fat.
The Role of Vegetables
Not only are vegetables filled with vitamins and minerals, but the non-starchy vegetables are also low in calories and fat and provide fibre that promotes healthy digestion.
Green beans are good for dogs because of their omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins A, C, and K. They’re also a good source of calcium, copper, fibre, folic acid, iron, niacin, manganese, potassium, riboflavin and thiamin, as well as beta carotene. Essentially, they’re the superpower of vegetables for your dog.
We certainly understand the value of spinach in our own diets, but luckily this green, leafy vegetable can be just as powerful for your dog. Although it’s high in iron (with almost twice as much of it as most other sources), spinach is a particularly good option for your dog since it helps fend off inflammatory and cardiovascular issues.
Pumpkin for dogs loads them up on fibre, vitamin A and anti-oxidants. It can help alleviate diarrhea and constipation. And it has been known to promote his overall cardiovascular health.
Sweet Potatoes for Dogs
A great source of vitamins E, A, B-6 and C, as well as calcium, iron, folate, potassium, copper, thiamine and iron, sweet potatoes for dogs are a wonderful addition.
Potatoes add a helpful punch of nutrients. They provide vitamins (B3, B6, C, etc.), minerals (manganese, phosphorus, etc.), antioxidants (carotenoids, flavonoids, etc.) as well as potassium, iron, copper and fibre.
Peas are a good source of the B vitamin, Thiamine, phosphorous, and potassium.
One of the greatest treats for dogs also happens to be loaded with powerful phytonutrients. Packed with Vitamins A, K and C, carrots pack a powerful antioxidant punch. Additionally, carrots help a dog’s vision, heart, and blood sugar levels.
It’s hard to beat kale in terms of maximum nutrition for minimal calories. Kale is a proven cancer-risk cutter, abundant source of fibre, calcium, Vitamin A, E and C, helps prevent heart disease and contains numerous antioxidants.
Great source of vitamin C. Good source of vitamins K and B6, folate and choline.
We believe carbohydrates can be an excellent source of energy when that carbohydrate is from a whole food, human grade source.
To ensure our dog meals are fully balanced with all nutritional needs, we add two supplements to all our meals.
Vets All Natural Health Booster, formulated by Dr Syme. A completely natural multivitamin for your pet. It provides the essential vitamins, minerals, trace elements and antioxidants.
NUTRIENT PANEL (mg or IU/kg): Calcium 12,400 Vitamin A 100 IU Magnesium 5,600 Vitamin E 25 IU Zinc 520 Vitamin C 5000 Boron 75 Vitamin B1 3.7 Selenium 0.28 Vitamin B2 7.5 GAG’s 500 Vitamin D 200 IU, Multi Vitamin, Mineral, Trace Element & Anti-oxidant supplement. Promotes health, wellbeing, vitality and immune function.
Ingredients: Dolomite, Liver Granules, Flax Seed Meal, Vitamin C Powder, Green Tea, Milk Thistle Extract, Grape Seed Extract, Brewers Yeast, Barley Grass Powder, Kelp Granules, Parsley Powder, Ginger, Lecithin Granules, Wheat Germ, Garlic Powder, Colostrum Powder, Shark Cartilage Powder, Boron Chelate, Zinc Chelate.
Natural Animal Solutions – Omega 3, 6, 9 Oil.
Flaxseed oil, cod liver oil, extra virgin olive oil and natural vitamin E.