There are tens of thousands of people who follow only the Paleo Diet and are always found convincing others to do the same. They would be praising and citing the benefits of going Grain-Free and eating only grain-free food. To please and fulfil the demand of these customers, nearly all the food and agricultural companies have launched gluten-free products and sales of these products are growing steadily.
A lot of modern pet food products are grain-free and there are even some grain-free dog treats available in the market as well. This is true, that dogs don’t naturally eat or like grain foods. I don’t think anybody must have seen dogs going crazy in a wheat crop field trying to find his food.
So why do we need to feed our beloved pet dogs with something that they do not crave for? or that they do not have a great hunger for?
Read on and you will get a lot of answers to your questions about grain-free dog food and whether “Grain-free food is safe for dogs or not“?
How did Grain-Free Pet Food enter the Pet Marketplace?
As humans started to get aware of their eating habits and their diet, they started to introduce diets like paleo and keto to keep their weight and health in check. And as some of the people started to see positive results following these diets, they also thought of introducing these diets in their pet dog’s diet and lifestyle.
And the marketplace responded by introducing grain-free pet food products when they saw diet conscious people started to transfer their eating philosophies to their pet dogs as well.
Though, it won’t be wrong to say that the way digestive systems of humans work is much different than those of dogs. Hence, it’s not necessary that anything which may be considered healthy for us will also be considered healthy for our pet dogs. But this doesn’t mean that grain-free dog is of no real value.
Certain grain-free dog foods use very high-quality ingredients such as real chicken, beef, turkey and grain-free products are of real value because of the purity of these ingredients and not solely on the fact that the food is “grain-free”. But only some food products have high-quality ingredients, not all.
However, for many dogs, grain-free dog foods are not always the best option. If you are looking to feed the grain-free dog food products to your dog, you need to read some facts below:
Are There Any Concerns about Grain-Free Dog Food?
The FDA is looking into a possible connection between Dilated Cardiomyopathy (Canine Heart Disease) in dogs and certain ingredients in grain-free dog food products. Lisa Freeman, DVM and Ph.D. explained in her recent article on the American Veterinary Medical Association that the main issue that is getting investigated by FDA is not with the grain-free products but with “BEG” (boutique companies, exotic ingredients, or grain-free diets) products.
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“The apparent link between BEG diets and DCM may be due to ingredients used to replace grains in grain-free diets, such as lentils or chickpeas, but also may be due to other common ingredients commonly found in BEG diets, such as exotic meats, vegetables, and fruits,” Freeman wrote.
She also stated that more research is going on this about this issue. FDA experimented on this matter and this FDA report suggests that nearly all the dogs who were regularly eating ‘grain-free’ dog foods in their experiment had some kind of problem with their hearts.
I would highly advise you to be cautious when it comes to feeding an entirely ‘grain-free’ diet to your dog till the time FDA comes up with any solution or conclusion to the matter of Potential link between Canine Heart Disease and ingredients in “Grain-free” products.
Also, I would like to tell you that there are certain secrets that the Pet Food Industry don’t want pet owners to know about, you can get to know them on Dog Food Secrets and how you can protect your beloved dog from this kind of pet food.
Benefits of the Grain-Free Dog Food
Most veterinary doctors suggest that Carbohydrates and grains make about 10% of your dog’s diet. The ratio that needs to be maintained and is considered healthy is 50% vegetables,40%protein and 10%grains. Most of the grain-free dog foods contain very less amount of carbohydrates and are rich in meat(protein) and therefore are easily digested.
Benefits of Grain-Free Dog food are:
- Helps in Reducing Canine Food Allergies.
- Grain-free food improves skin quality and shine.
- They keep dogs stomach fuller longer.
- Boosts Energy levels.
- Smaller stools
Grain-Free Good or Bad for Dog Food Allergies?
As I mentioned above, Grain-free dog food is a really good option for you if your dog is suffering from any kind of food allergy. Many human beings chose gluten-free food to improve their allergy as well.
Wheat can cause any small agitation in the body which can ignite the immune system. The resources in the immune system of the human body get diverted away from other allergy-causing to only this wheat allergen. Same might be the case with dogs as well?
Most of the Dog allergies are due to environmental conditions and only 10% of allergies are caused due to food, which is mostly from meat, lamb, beef and rarely eggs. Very few allergies are due to corn or wheat and in that case, grain-free food can be very useful.
Otherwise, in other kinds of allergies, Grain-free dog food does not provide any desired result.
Also Read: Should You Feed Rice to your Dog?
Conclusion: Is Grain-Free right for My Dog?
I would say that if your dog is Healthy and Playful, you should not make any changes to his diet. Also, take a close look at the ingredients of your dog’s food. If there is an ample amount of wheat and corn in the ingredients, try to switch to more protein-rich food.
Add a good mixture of Chicken and Carbs to his diet. Anything in excess can be bad for your pet dog.
If you want to go grain-free, One very important tip is to gradually increase the amount of grain-free food products in your dog’s diet. Introduce some amount for the first 2-3 weeks and then increase from the fourth week onwards.
And If you decide to go “grain-free” and you are worried about the lower amount of carbs in grain-free dog food products, I would like to guide you with the fact that this is a big misconception among dog owners. Grain-free dog food is not low carb.
As I know how much you care and love your dog, I would recommend you to be careful about what Commercial Foods you chose and have a look at Some Secrets that Dog Food Industry don’t want you to know about.