Issue 61

Going Green With Your Dog – Can Dogs Be Vegetarians?

The modern, domestic dog is an adaptable creature, happy living in a heated home, watching television and travelling by car. He is no longer the carnivorous hunter we made friends with 15,000 years ago. One thing that has kept our relationship with the dog so sweet, is the canine’s knack of fitting in. But how far can this go? Would he be prepared to join us on the road to vegetarianism or would his taste for meat prevent it? Suzanne Smith takes a look at going green with our dogs.

Homemade dog food is becoming a popular option amongst modern dog owners, although hardly a new one. Every dog alive today can be traced back to dogs that were raised on homemade natural diets. The dog food industry, in comparison to dogs themselves, is young - maybe 50 to 60 years - although canned meat was sold as dog food at the turn of the twentieth century. Originally, the commercial foods were meant to supplement homemade food.

Use your judgement to assess whether your dog is benefiting from this type of lifestyle. Rapid weight loss, dull coat, low energy and any other abnormal reaction should be a warning that you need to speak to a vet or nutritionist about what you are doing. It may be worth reintroducing some meat back in to the diet.

If your dog is overweight or suffering from mobility problems of skin problems, a vegetarian diet can be a huge boon to his overall well being. Dogs are omnivorous animals, but even a temporary change to a vegetarian diet can be beneficial to both you and your dog, provided you do your research and monitor the results.

Have you ever gone green with your dog? Tell us how you got on!



1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. jacqueline

    December 2, 2012 at 6:34 pm

    I had a labrador x golden retriever who lived on a purely vegetarian diet. She had a grain and a pulse or bean every day and plenty of olive and flax oil. She LOVED food and ate with great enthusiasm. She lived to a ripe old age and was never over or under weight. I am sure she would have loved meat but I chose not to have it in the house.

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