Thursday, May 30, 2013

How the world feeds dogs

If we are what we eat, then so are the dogs we feed.  Scientists are taking a serious look at diet with a special interest in gut microbiota.  Gut microbial colonies begin to form at birth, affecting how the immune system develops. Is it possible that dogs fed western diets of commercial foods have gut microbes that are somehow related to a less robust immune system?   

Survey conducted by World Society for the Protection of Animals. 

To find out more about how diets and the immune system are related, the American Gut Project is seeking samples from people and their pets.  You can participate, too.

Read my post about how many calories your dog needs each day.  It has lots of helpful links.

1 comment:

  1. This is such an interestng topic! I'm of the view that if the food is not good enough for me to eat then it's not good enough for my dogs either! I don't like processed food for me or them, so before I got my first dog Shalimar, I did a lot of research about diet written by vets. From all of that, I decided to give them as natural a diet(pre-pet food company)as possible. Meaty bones for breakfast, and a meat/vege loaf for dinner - my own receipe, with advice I had gleaned as far as ingredients are concerned. I make it up myself about every 3/4 weeks, it's made up of veges, premium quality mince, brown rice, organic rolled oats and barley. I cut and weigh out the portions and freeze them until I need them. My dogs have maintained their weight, their coats/skin are excellent, (age has taken a few teeth), their stools are well formed (not the sloppy variety). They get a very small handful of dry biscuits (Hills Science Diet)in the middle of the day when I'm home to keep tooth tartar in check. I've also discovered in discussions with my local vet that it's not just gut health we have to mindful of, but kidney health too, very important!!!! Both my dogs(Schipperkes) are the same age, 11 this year, so I am keeping a close watch re: kidneys, both have had abdo ultra-sounds so we know where we stand. I'm a bit of a fussy mother with them, but they deserve the best I can do for them, and as a nurse always mindful of health issues. The whole dietry thingy regarding dogs is so varied and strong views held at each end of the spectrum, I've not doubt this will continue as pet food companys have their own economic interests and can influence vets' clinics as drug companys influence human doctors. If you ever have more to say on this issue I'd be very interested to learn more. Thankyou for bringing this subject to the fore.