So Why is Processed Food is Bad for Dogs?
Dogs are famous, and even infamous for their willingness to literally eat almost anything. Any dog
owner will be familiar with the experience of dragging their dog away from another canine’s faeces
which they have started to eat, or even a pool of vomit they are licking off of the floor. Despite
effectively being a more evolved and domesticated wolf, the modern dog is often happy to eat foods
we might be surprised to see an alpha hunter enjoying. Dogs have been known to eat and enjoy
everything from cheese to vegetables, but will often be satisfied with processed tinned food.
While common, convenient, and seemingly enjoyed by dogs, processed food is often far from
healthy, and sometimes simply bad for them. The dog and working animal food industry is huge, and
has undergone a significant expansion in recent years. However, it is not regulated in the same
rigorous manner that human foods are. In fact, animal and dog feeds is legally allowed to contain
what are referred to as “undesirable substances” (see Directive 2002/32/EC of the European
Parliament and of the Council, so long as their quantity is not immediately dangerous to the animals
eating them, and poses no danger to humans. A government website confirms that “The labeling
requirements for dog food are less onerous than those for feed for farmed livestock. For livestock,
the ingredients must be declared individually in descending order by weight, but dog food
manufacturers have the option to declare them by category — e.g. ‘meat and animal derivatives’,
‘oils and fats’, ‘cereals’, ‘vegetable protein extracts'”. The practical application of this stipulation is
that animal food manufacturers are able to label with significant vagueness while utilising this to
sell low-quality products at a steep price margin.
Additionally, dogs are often simply not physiologically designed to be able to eat and healthily digest
processed food. As the descendant of the wolf, with which it shares significant biological similarities,
the modern dog has evolved to most easily and healthily digest a protein-rich raw food-based diet,
i.e. meat and fish. The dog’s digestive system is unable to effectively process food such as grains and
cereals, and while they can eat them, they will not extract the necessary nutrients from them. Given
how grains and cereals are often cheaper than meat, processed food manufacturers tend to increase
their content percentage, adding more of a foodstuff dogs are naturally unable to gain full benefit
Feeding your dog unhealthy processed food over a prolonged period of time is not only likely to
degrade their overall physiological well being, but also increases the risk of long-term medical
conditions. Your dog’s teeth, coat, energy levels, digestive systems, and even mental health can all
suffer if they are fed an inappropriate and unhealthy processed food-based diet.
Although it is possible to source healthier processed foods, feeding your working dog a raw food diet
is by far the best option. If you are interested in changing your dog’s diet, ProDog Raw would be
more than happy to advise on the best way of doing this, and we look forward to helping you with
this. Raw food is naturally the healthiest way to feed your working. We are sure that once you try it,
you will notice a clear improvement, and remain feeding your working dog our raw food products.
There are no comments for this post.