Raw food diets

Raw food diet has been gaining in popularity over the last few years. Raw food can be fed as a prepared frozen meal, or as raw meat with individual addition of grain and supplement mixes.

Supporters feel that raw meat is better because our dog’s wild canine ancestors survived on uncooked food. Grains and supplements need to be added, because the dog’s eating habits belong to the omnivore, despite their biological grouping being Carnivora. No scientific data supports the raw food diet having advantages regarding disease prevention and resolving/improving preexisting health conditions.

Critics argue that raw diets could be a health threat because proper food handling and sanitation practices with raw meat can not be guaranteed. They also argue that pathogens in raw meat are capable of causing illness in dogs/cats and that bone can lead to dental and gastrointestinal trauma. The article “Raw Food Diets: A Research Review” explains concerns about nutritional inadequacy when raw diets are fed long-term.

The article The Truth About Unconventional Diets for Dogs and Cats also explains the meaning of Natural, Organic, Holistic, and Human-Grade pet foods.

Please read the scientific research articles below if you want to make your own educated decisions about dog food.

The articles are in PDF format – Please make sure you have Adobe Reader installed on your computer. If not you can click here to download Adobe Acrobat Reader (Free)


Alternative and Raw food diets – what do we know?
Kara M. Burns, MS, MEd, LVT, VTS (Nutrition)
Academy of Veterinary Nutrition Technicians, Wamego, KS, USA

Raw Food Diets: A Research Review
ACVIM 2011
Andrea J. Fascetti, VMD, PhD, DACVIM (Small Animal Internal Medicine),
Davis, CA, USA

Raw Pet Food Diets: Parasites, Pathogens, & Perceptions
ACVIM 2008
Laura Duclos, PhD
Lincoln, NE, USA

The Truth About Unconventional Diets for Dogs and Cats
Adronie Verbrugghe, DVM, PhD, DECVCN
Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, Canada