This article began as a topic for “healthy” brand/formula dog food versus “regular” brand/formula dog food. It did not end that way. As far as any and all commercial dog food is concerned it was discovered that there is a needed difference in the commercial dog food for small dogs, large dogs, puppies, and old dogs. Small dogs need a higher calorie formula diet due to their metabolism, whereas large dogs do not. Young puppies need to eat a “puppy” formula food which is higher in calcium. For old dogs a formulation to promote joint health is needed. But which brand/formula is above all the best? Wow! This was like opening up a can of worms. Every brand claims they are the best and healthiest for whichever type of dog. What really surfaced in the research were the benefits of a raw food diet. So, what will be discussed in this article is the raw food diet versus any and all commercial dog food diet.
For thousands of years prior to WWII, dogs did not eat kibble or canned dog food; it did not exist. The dogs ate food scraps from their owners and they ate other animals they captured. During WWII, with the men off to war and the women in the workforce, food scraps became scarce. Canned dog food came into existence when less food scraps were available for the family dog to eat. In the 1950’s, dry kibble food was invented.
Today, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves all drugs and medicines to be used by animals and humans. The regulations for dog food covers proper and correct labeling, harmful changes to dog food, no poisons in the food or processing containers, the packaging and processing in a sanitary conditions and no diseased animals to be used in the food. However, there are no requirements for dog food to have a premarket approval.
The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) has no regulatory authority, but is an association with volunteer members from the industry and local, state and federal agencies who set policies to provide consumer protection, safeguard health of humans and animals, and “provide a level playing field of orderly commerce for the animal feed industry”.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is involved in regulating labeling, identification and ingredients of commercial dog food. Manufacturers of canned dog food can volunteer to be inspected by the USDA, and use a label stating this.
Meanwhile, ingredients are being found in commercial dog foods that require a recall of the dog food due to fatalities or sicknesses.
Raw food diet is seeing its way, again, into popularity. There are very good points to its health benefits. More energy, less illness, less vaccines/medications, and better oral hygiene: breath, teeth and gums. Raw food is not at all harmful to your dog. In fact, it is good for them. Dogs will always eat the raw food given them, whereas they may refuse to eat a meal of commercial dog food. There is also no ‘special’ raw food to fit needs of small, large, young and old dogs; just the raw food diet itself. A complete raw food diet needs to include proper supplements to be added for a complete balance of nutritional requirements. It is a commitment to extra time to prepare the food and nutrients, and for the extra expense to purchase the supplements. For a lot of people, throwing in a scoop of dry kibble food into the dog bowl and be done with it, commercial food is definitely more convenient.
Tehillah raw vs kibble
Commercial dog food is advertised (not proved or disproved) to help our dogs live longer healthier lives. Commercial dog food is ingrained into our culture. Veterinarians vary in their opinions from which dog food is better to opinions stating that raw food is better. Ultimately, it is the preference of the owner of the dog.