Understanding Overnutrition Among Dogs: A Modern-Day Crisis

Pet owners have their dogs’ best interest in mind all the time. Add pampering to the equation and you have owners who may go overboard at times with everything – from toys, to spa treatments, and yes, even with nutrition.

With much talk about which diets are best for their dogs, how appropriate they are to dog and cat biology, and how much is too much, it’s easy to drown in a sea of online pet forums, debates and misinformation.

But more than the quandary, what is even more troubling is the fact that for eight straight years, obesity has risen as one of the main causes of shortened lifespan among dogs, and pet owners are having trouble pinpointing the root of the dilemma.

While there are many a reason to consider, nutrition plays a pivotal role in the equation. More than ever, pet owners need to talk about the dangers of overnutrition and what they can do to prevent it.

Understanding overnutrition

There are many underlying factors to overnutrition.

For one, the belief that dogs need high-meat diets to sustain their healthy, active lifestyle has been going around forums of late. For example, the premise that dogs need more raw meat in their diets because they are biologically designed to be carnivorous has gained quite a following.

But recent reports say that there are enumerable potential risks of feeding dogs and cats with raw meat–based diets. Likewise, there is also a host of potential red flags affecting owners themselves with relation to bacterial infections and safety, which were raised by earlier studies.

In the light of all these, many facts are dismissed entirely.

For one, dogs have evolved into omnivores whose balanced diet now includes both animal and plant-based proteins. Given their evolved lifestyle that’s loosely patterned on their human companions’ own way of life, their nutritional needs have become far different from their wolf-cousins who forage for food, and do not consume proteins as frequently and as leisurely as our dogs.

Two, dogs have an adaptive digestive system that has grown accustomed to a variety of protein sources, including both meat and plant-based.

And third, the fact that protein is a calorie-dense nutrient and that high-meat diets are very high in calories, which can contribute to excessive weight gain in dogs.

These in mind, pet owners need to be more careful about their dog food choices and consider all factors that can largely affect their pets’ nutrition in the long haul before choosing which food to give their dogs.

Less is more

Pet owners must take action in ensuring that their dogs are getting the most out of their diets and are being fed within their recommended food intake, based on the lifestyle that they live. Likewise, owners should also consider including exercise in their pets’ daily routine to manage their weight, as well as following the daily recommended food intake for pet food and pet treats.

Beyond these though, owners should also understand the potential risks of giving too much of a good thing, regardless of how convenient it can be to compare apples with ‘not apples.’

As enticing as they may sound, raw meats can contain as much as 70% of water, which evaporates during the ‘cooking’ process and leaves behind only up to 18% of actual meat protein, which is not enough to give dogs the balanced nutrition that they need.

Instead, you need to look for premium pet food that uses the right amount of high-quality ingredients responsibly sourced and produced preferably from one of the cleanest countries to make pet food – New Zealand.

Choose Addiction Foods

Addiction Foods uses meat proteins from free-range and cage-free animal sources and the freshest locally-sourced vegetables and fruits, teeming with naturally-occurring antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, blended into just the right amounts that your pets need to live robust, healthy lives across their life stages.

And because it’s grain and gluten-free, trust Addiction to help prevent allergies in your dogs as well.

Using the widest range of proteins available in the market – both well-loved and novel meats – Addiction Foods is your best choice in taking your dog’s health and nutrition further.

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