How a Vegan Diet Can Benefit Your Dog - New research is here!
Despite the fact that dogs are omnivorous, there remains considerable debate about the suitability of feeding them a diet that is primarily plant-based. Some individuals argue that it is inappropriate to impose our own moral convictions on our pets by compelling them to consume vegan food, but is it really the case? Answer from us will be, that vegan diets are healthier and safer. Additionally, concerned pet owners may question whether a vegan diet can provide the same level of nutritional benefits as a meat-based diet, thereby promoting the overall health and well-being of their cherished animal companions.
There have been various studies previously that proved that dogs not only thrive on vegan diet but in fact, experience a range of health benefits. However, a more recent study has found that dogs who consume vegan diets can experience a variety of benefits and may outlive those fed with other types of commercial pet food by an average of 18 months. Despite an increasing number of studies highlighting the advantages of vegan diets for dogs, there was a significant gap in knowledge: the digestibility of commercial vegan dog food had never been thoroughly examined, i.e., how effectively the body absorbs the nutrients. But in the latest study on vegan diet for dogs filled this gap too!
In the first study to assess the digestibility of commercially prepared vegan pet food, researchers out of the University of Illinois tested two mildly cooked, human-grade vegan meals and a leading chicken-based kibble on a set of dogs and then measured their blood chemistry, fecal makeup, microbiome and other health-related factors.
The two plant-based options – a high-protein grain and non-grain vegan meal from a line prepared by veterinary nutritionists – and the chicken dry food were fed to 12 healthy adult female beagles in three separate experimental periods. The team also assessed the nutritional value of all three, finding that the vegan meals – featuring lentils, garbanzo beans, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, apples, blueberries, peas and carrots – and the kibble met the complete and balanced industry standards set by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
“One thing to remember is that animals don't have ingredient requirements, they have nutrient requirements,” said Swanson, professor in the Department of Animal Sciences at the University of Illinois. “As long as they’re consuming the essential nutrients in the correct amounts and ratios, dogs can be vegan, vegetarian, or meat-eaters.”
Conclusion of the Study
- The digestibility of plant-based protein was just as high as the chicken, proving that animal products are not “better” protein
- The digestibility of high-quality fat was even higher (94%) and characteristic of gently cooked (meaning, non-dry/non-kibble), human-grade pet food
- Dogs fed vegan diet had lower cholesterol and triglycerides, which is a huge benefit for overall well-being and maintaining a healthy weight
- The dogs on vegan diet showed healthier microbiomes and overall improved gut health
- The dogs loved the vegan food as much as the chicken based food!
This study showed that, when carefully and properly formulated, a gently-cooked, human-grade plant-based pet food can actually outperform an animal-based pet food.
At Freshwoof, we take pride in ensuring that our dog food recipes are carefully & meticulously crafted to provide all the necessary nutrients your dog requires to maintain optimal health and vitality, slow cooked to preserve the nutrients. We exclusively use human-grade ingredients of the finest quality and supplement them with ayurvedic herbs, superfoods and pharma quality vitamins & minerals to enhance your pup’s health. Our meals are produced in an FDA-certified and GMP-certified facility to maintain the highest standards of quality and safety.
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