They say to avoid an argument one should never discuss politics or religion in polite company; to be safe, one might add pet diets to that list as well. This question, “which food is best?,” points out a key flaw to much of the “best” dog food debate—there are many opinions on this subject but what is lacking is legitimate science that clearly demonstrates that one way of feeding a dog is superior to any other way. If you want to know if your dog will live a longer, happier life on organic food based on scientific research—your answer is not yet available. When your friend tells you they read online that feeding a raw diet is the only way to go, please be assured there is no definitive science to prove that statement. To add to the confusion, it is also impossible to look at the list of ingredients in two bags of pet food and to know which is the more healthful food for your pet. Many pet food companies make misleading claims of “whole” or “human grade” ingredients to appeal to us, which do not indicate the relative healthfulness of the food itself.
That said, there are some things we do know:
Your pet will live a longer and healthier life if you feed the correct AMOUNT of food. There is good science to support this concept for both dogs and people. So, though the vets at Veremedy have opinions on which foods might be best, we have good data on how much food should be fed.
There is nothing wrong with feeding a balanced, healthy homemade diet. The problem is that studies have shown that most recipes for homemade dog and cat diets are not nutritionally complete. Unbalanced diets, cooked or raw, are unhealthy. For anyone considering feeding a homemade diet, we, STRONGLY, recommend that a veterinary nutritionist formulate the diet first. These services are available online, for example:
Veremedy veterinarians talk about nutrition all the time, and though we do discuss the pros and cons of different feeding methods, we are most interested in making sure that the amount of food fed is correct, and that the nutrition in the food is balanced for each pet’s needs.