This is an excerpt from Should your dog be vegan from the Chicago Sun Times.
Two veterinarians were asked whether it is okay for dogs to be vegan.
- Dr. Ernie Ward, a veterinarian and founder of the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention and chief veterinarian officer of Wild Earth, a biotech startup developing clean high-protein pet foods.
- Dr. Barbara Royal, founder of the Royal Treatment Veterinary Center of Chicago.
Dr. Ernie Ward says yes.
There is no right or wrong, what is right is to find the diet that fits not only your own personal beliefs but also your dog or cat’s best health. I am against meat but I also respect people’s right to choose. There are going to be some dogs that thrive on certain diets, but I would argue that probably given the chance, if they tried an alternative protein source they would probably thrive just as well.
~ Dr. Ernie Ward
Dr. Barbara Royal disagrees.
Dogs are scavengers. I really believe dogs need their protein to be coming from a meat source to provide the appropriate amount of taurine (an amino acid) in their system or you will have heart problems. You will have vision problems. Those are immediately obvious and as a veterinarian, I see that.
~ Dr. Barbara Royal
It is important to be smart about transitioning your dog to a vegan diet. Stick to the reputable vegan dog food brands and you should have no problem ensuring your dog will get all the essential nutrients.
My 8-year-old dog, Rocky (pictured top right), has been on a vegan dog food diet for most of his life. He gets all his essential nutrients from non-animal sources thanks to vegan dog food from Veganpet. He does not have heart problems or vision problems as described above. Therefore, I disagree that dogs need protein from a meat source because Rocky is living proof of that.
Check out this one-minute video by BBC on vegan dogs.
It all starts out positive on vegan dog food but the last 10 seconds was a bit insulting.
So when giving them the choice between chicken or carrot… owners may want to think twice.
I feel like the video was trying to imply that someone might be so stupid as to feed their dog only carrots. My dog loves carrots but I only give him carrots as a treat and not as his main source of food.
Veganism is a growing trend and it is not surprising to see increasing numbers of vegan pet food products on the market in recent years. Vegan pet food may be confronting for many people at first and the natural reaction is to be defensive. However, once you open your mind and take the time to investigate further, your initial objections may not be true after all.