Feeding Your Dog The Conclusion

18th July 2012 - in Health

In this concluding article Steve explains why he is now feeding his dogs a natural diet and urges you to give it a try with your own dogs.

The natural diet I pescribed for my dogs resulted in an incredible and rapid increase in overall health, vigour and vitality. Skin, teeth and gum, eye, growth and reproductive problems were minimised and in most cases eliminated. Stools ceased to be smelly and far less were produced because the total food intake was being used efficiently by the dog’s digestive system. Feeding the dogs was far cheaper, vet bills, drugs and dentistry were drastically reduced.

I personally feel therefore that a logical conclusion is that the health and disease problems that we encounter in modern dogs are often caused by poor nutrition despite the extravagant claims by pet food manufacturers.

Consider the following:

  • Dogs fed on cooked and processed foods with no bones will always develop a weakened immune system and poor dental health.
  • Dogs do not need a "complete and balanced" feed for every meal. That approach is totally against natural feeding regimes – no creature (including ourselves) eats that way. The dog eating a range of different foods will achieve a balance and will utilise the many and varied trace elements, vitamins and minerals coupled with the main food content over a period of time and in doing so thus achieve a natural balance.
  • A dog is a carnivore i.e. it eats other animals, internal organs, meat, bones, absolutely everything.
  • A dog is also a vegetarian – one of the first things eaten by a wild dog when it kills is the stomach and partly digested intestinal contents, containing fermenting grass and plant materials. Dogs also love to eat over-ripe fruit or the pickings from the bottom of the compost heap.
  • A dog is a scavenger and will eat and derive food value from practically anything including dead and rotting material and faeces and will often gain great benefit from it, despite our disapproving looks.
  • A dog is a hunter and will eat anything that moves from insects, beetles or spiders through to birds and small mammals

So in other words the dog is not only an omnivore but also an opportunist and eats whatever food is available, even down to the edible contents of a dustbin !

The answer is thus quite simple to perceive, in that a dog roaming the streets and having to fend for itself is living closer to nature and what would be its normal evolved lifestyle. It may not have the same food as its predecessors, but at least it is not limited by our human prejudiced and often ill-informed choices and decisions. Much of the food is raw, rotten and varied and includes bones. This rotten food and indeed the food that the dog has previously buried and dug up later contains a host of micro-organisms which act in a positive manner in the dog’s digestive system.

These articles briefly touch on the comparisons, benefits and results of the natural feeding as opposed to a commercially prepared highly processed diet, so let’s finally explode a few myths:

  • You do not need to be a highly qualified canine nutritionist to provide a healthy diet for your dog, which will promote good health.
  • You can easily feed dogs on a natural diet, without worrying about the exact formulations.
  • You do not have to feed cooked or highly processed food ~ raw is best.
  • You do not have to feed a "balanced" diet every day.

I am not asking you to don your Kaftan, beads or any strange clothes and wander up and down the road collecting rosebuds and grinding them in a pestle & mortar !

But simply to return to how dogs were fed before and to emulate, with the benefit of modern day food, the manner in which they would feed in "the wild" thereby achieving a balanced intake over a period of time and not everyday as so many manufacturers preach.

There are a rapidly growing number of people who are switching across to the natural feeding diet, however the multi-million pound pet food industry will not let its grip of the market go without a fight. So its up to you ~ do you carry on for the sake of convenience with the problems or do you give you dog the best chance of a fit, healthy and happy life and as an added bonus keep your hard earned money in your pocket !

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  • 5th September 2012 16:57 - Posted by : Tiffany Giudicelli

    I totally agree with your approach to feeding your dog. Our Spinone was brought up on bones and leftovers (with occasional dried biscuits) and lived healthily till a ripe old age of 12. When she arrived the breeder said that spinones had a delicate stomach and could only eat specific brand foods. Margot, our dog, thought differently and I think loved eating what she could smell in the kitchen. She also loved gnawing on a bone for hours on the lawn. I do miss her.

  • 30th July 2013 07:40 - Posted by : Sophie

    If processed foods aren't good for humans, then they can't be for dogs either. Pet food and baby food manufacturers prey on those less confident among us to provide a 'balanced' diet to the young, yet we're told there's no need to take nutritional supplements if we eat sensibly: our diet will balance out in the end. Same must be true for dogs. I feed my dog unprocessed but cooked but unseasoned food (only because I'm squeamish about eating raw food food myself) - I know dogs in the wild do not have such luxuries! Don't listen to the marketing hype on TV.