Dog nutrition - here the opinions of all dog owners probably divide the most. Dogs do not need carbohydrates! Dogs need very large amounts of meat! And on the other side one hears: One can feed dogs also vegetarian! As if dog nutrition was not already a sufficiently complicated topic for itself, the myths that arise again and again, do not make it easy for new dog parents to find the optimal food for their four-legged friend. In this post we take the 8 most widespread myths under the microscope and enlighten you!
A raw food diet is the most expensive! - Wrong
It is not possible to generalize the cost of a raw food diet, because the amount of food varies greatly according to the age, size and activity of the dog. After all, a 65kg Great Dane eats more than a Dachshund. Yes, it is more expensive than most dry food from the discount store. But if you compare the prices of high-quality wet food with the prices of the food needed for a raw food diet, you get pretty much the same result.
Dry food is good against tartar! - Wrong
Probably THE marketing strategy of the dry food industry. It is on quite a few packages and the advertising says it too. The hard dry food should free the teeth from deposits when chewing and thus prevent tartar. Sounds too good to be true - is unfortunately exactly the case. Apart from the fact that the food crumbles far too quickly during chewing for it to have this effect, dogs often swallow the kibble whole.
Dogs need very large amounts of meat! - Wrong
Although meat plays an important role in dog nutrition as a source of protein, it should not be fed exclusively or in excess. A balanced, nutrient-rich diet is also important for dogs. Because a very high meat content usually also stands for a very high protein content, which can damage the liver and kidneys in the long run.
Dogs should rest after eating! - Correct
In order for your four-legged friend's digestion to function optimally, he should take a 1-2 hour rest break after eating. The reason for this is the autonomic nervous system, consisting of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. The sympathetic nervous system reacts to stress, high activity and exertion and causes an increase in the performance of the entire body. In parallel, it inhibits processes that are not needed for activity, such as digestion. The parasympathetic nervous system has the opposite effect. It mainly stimulates body processes that serve relaxation and regeneration. It also cranks up the digestive process, as well as multiple metabolic processes. Another reason why your four-legged friend should rest after eating is the risk of gastric torsion. Especially large breeds have a genetic predisposition that increases this risk.
Adult dogs need food only 1x a day! - Wrong
Since dogs have a sack stomach, they can indeed eat and store very large amounts of food at once without feeling full, but they have been used to regular feeding for ages. If a double portion is now fed once, digestive problems can occur. Also, large amounts at once can increase the risk of gastric distention, especially if the dog is active after eating. Adult dogs should be fed 2x daily, young dogs 3x daily, and puppies up to 6x daily. Different types of feeding should not be mixed! - False Behind this statement is the fact that different types of food or differently processed food components also have different digestion times. It is true that the processing process has an influence on the digestion time, but animal components, for example, also have different digestion times than vegetable components. The fact that different components of a meal are digested at different times, but has no influence on a healthy digestive tract.
Dogs do not need carbohydrates! - Wrong
In principle, carbohydrates are not a vital nutrient for either humans or animals, but they are energy supplier number one. They support the work of the brain and are responsible for maintaining the health of the nervous and muscular systems. What is important here is the quality and the quantity administered. Preference should be given to complex carbohydrates ,such as from potatoes or rice. However, this does not change the fact that excessive consumption of carbohydrates makes you fat - whether in humans or dogs.
You can also feed a dog vegetarian! - Correct
In fact, it is possible to feed a dog vegetarian, there are even diseases and allergies that make this inevitable. In a vegetarian diet, the focus should be on giving the dog enough vegetable proteins. Nevertheless, one should not re-educate his quadruped to a vegetarian without reason, since vegetable proteins are more difficult for dogs to digest than proteins of animal origin.
How do you feed your four-legged friend? And which myth have you already fallen for? We hope we could answer some of your questions and if not, feel free to write them in the comments!