Can Dogs Be Vegetarian?

We decide how we feed ourselves based on our belief or health and political backgrounds. These beliefs can sometimes reflect on the way we treat our pets and their diet.

So, sometimes dog owners might try to switch up their pets eating habits too based on their own opinions of right and wrong. So, the question is, is this even possible?

Some warnings

Animals like cats can’t be converted to vegan and vegetarian diet. It just doesn’t go naturally with their feeding habits, and making them eat food that doesn’t contain meat can be very dangerous.

Dogs, on the other hand, can be converted to vegetarian diet but this has to be done very carefully. Proteins are very important in dogs diet so significant amount must be present in his daily meal plan. Vitamins D and A can’t be produced by dog’s skin, so this vitamin must be included in his diet. Precisely vitamin D3 which comes from animal sources.

Also, taurine is very important and dogs recieve it through dietary proteins. Certain amino acids that are needed in your canine’s diet can also be missing, or would be hard to replace when giving him vegetarian food only. Deficiency can also be shown in vitamins and minerals like: vitamin B, phosphorus, iron and calcium which can be absorbed through meat and other animal products.

Limited health benefits

Some of the foods that people eat, in this case vegetarians, can be very beneficial to our pets. We can continue to give our dogs vegetarian food as long as he feels ok or doesn’t get any health issues.

Some plants and veggies can keep your dog healthy, and give him enough vitamins and minerals that he needs. But, basing his diet only on these products can’t be too good for him. Foods like beans, soy, grains, corn and whole grains can give him enough amino acids and also needed vitamins and minerals.

Their bodies can also transform certain foods into amino acids without eating meat, and this is also very beneficial when he is getting vegetarian diet plan.

Guidelines to a balanced diet

If you stand by your opinion that your pets should be vegetarian too, than it is very important to make sure that he gets enough vitamins, minerals and other important supplements that his body needs.

You should definitely avoid getting your dog used to vegetarian food when he is just a puppy or if you are planning to breed your dogs. You should always feed your dog commercial diets that are proven as effective and healthy for dogs. When you are planning to convert your dog to vegetarianism make sure to check in with your vet, to be sure that he doesn’t have any medical issues that might prevent him from becoming a vegetarian.

Twice a year check your canine friend, through blood examination, to see if there are any changes in his overall health. Even veterinarians can decide to prescribe your dog  diets to relieve his allergies, liver disease and bladder stone conditions.

Adding in supplements

To make sure that your dog gets enough vitamins and minerals, you can add supplements that are especially made for dogs. The only down side to this is that your dog will be getting a lot of synthesized nutrients to replace the ones he is not getting through food. When choosing these supplements ask for advice from your vet, to be sure that they will be helpful to him.

When deciding to convert your dog to vegetarianism, in the end it is your decision. Since you are probably a vegetarian, you know the rules of feeding properly, and getting enough nutrients, so you must apply this to your dog also. Since he absorbs certain foods differently you must get to know his needs, and try to incorporate those nutrients in his vegetarian diet. This, like I said might be hard, since our needs and needs of animals are not always the same.

Always ask for advice from your veterinarian, to make sure he stays healthy. Vegetarian diet for animals is something that is not common for them but options are there, so the right question is, is this really necessary if the cost of it, is your dogs health.

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