Eating raw meat is very natural for dogs. After all, they are primarily carnivores. So if your pet dog is begging you for a piece of juicy meat, logically, you may wonder about tossing them some.
Most dogs can handle meats pretty well and there’s a strong case that fresh meat is better than kibble. This has prompted some owners to consider switching to a strictly meat-based diet. Is that really a good idea and should it be cooked or raw and which types are best?
We’ll address this broad topic and try to clear up the confusion. In truth, those for and against make valid points. Proponents liken dogs to wolves and view things from an evolutionary standpoint. Those who disagree, on the other hand, point out some great commercial dog foods. No doubt, this is meaty topic!
Can I Give My Dog Some Meat? Answer: Yes, with some important restrictions
You can give your dog certain types of fresh meats without incident. Meat generally contains valuable protein which they need to thrive.
A strict meat diet, however, is more tricky. If your best buddy is accustomed to their daily dog food, their body will need to adjust and they likely won’t to be able to process that much concentrated meat. At the very least, such a drastically new diet may cause some gastrointestinal issues such as upset stomach and/or diarrhea.
Canines & Cooked Meat
People view cooked meat more favorably than when it’s raw which is understandable. But, let go of your own preferences when it comes to your dog’s eating habits. Cooked meat isn’t what they’d be consuming based on their predatory instincts.
Many will disagree but some of the best meats you can feed a pet dog are pieces of uncooked steaks and other types of choice beef.
The Safest Meats to Serve
All meats, both cooked and raw, contain decent levels of protein but some are more suitable for pet dogs than others. Safety is of the utmost concern due to the potential for parasitic disease and sickness. Your best bets are quality beef, turkey and lamb. These are great choices when serving raw meat.
It’s prudent to avoid providing raw fish because it may contain flukes, a type of parasite, which can harm your dog’s liver. Pork, regardless of how it’s served, isn’t well suited for dogs and also carries relatively higher risks. It’s generally a tough meat to digest but it also may contain trichinosis which is a dangerous roundworm.
Practicality & Commitment
Raw meats offer many merits. No doubt that your dog can benefit from such a diet strategy. Realistically though, it’s tough to maintain because most folks find it impractical over the long term. The food preparation, combined with the commitment, often proves difficult. Also, don’t forget that a meat diet will be significantly more expensive than most conventional dog foods. An occasional slab of fresh meat may be more realistic.
Convenience of Dog Food
So it’s arguably better to feed your dog a raw meat diet, especially compared to low-grade cheap dog food. Too many owners are buying questionable canine chow in order to be economical. Yes, there’s some meat in there but it usually cannot compare to a raw meat diet or even freshly cooked protein.
That said, there are some premium brands containing high-quality meat protein with all the convenience of regular dog food. In fact, the good stuff is specially formulated meaning your dog will benefit from a well-rounded diet designed for them. For example, this excellent dog food contains essential proteins and antioxidants with no grains. It also doesn’t require a huge adjustment that a strict meat diet would.
Conclusion on Feeding Meat
Feeding your dog certain raw meats can be an excellent way to provide high levels of nutrition and protein. There are, however, some uncooked foods which can be harmful as we’ve discussed above. For many dog owners, a strict raw meat diet requires too much effort and expense and isn’t easy to maintain. So, you can feed your dog meats on occasion but a high quality dog food is usually best. Also, read up on fat and bones!