If you’re a vegetarian out of choice for ethical or religious reasons, chances are that you will not want to venture anywhere near a meat store or a butcher’s shop. The thought of storing meat might almost be repulsive to you. But what do you do if you plan to adopt a pet? Why should I feed raw meat to my dog when I am a vegetarian? What are my options?
“Easy!” you might say. “My pet will be a vegetarian too. I’ll feed him kibble. That’s not meat. Or I can feed him a vegetarian diet.
I think that when we deal with other human beings, one of the most important things that we are taught or that we keep in mind is that we learn to respect the differences in people; their choices, religion, their ethnicities, and even their food choices. It is rare to find someone who will not share a table with a meat-eater be it at the workplace or amongst friends or anywhere else for that matter. The twist here is that while dealing with our pets we are in control of their lives, yes, but we must not forget that they are not human beings; they are animals and they are carnivores. Someone once said that my dog is no longer a wolf but then he isn't a rabbit either!!
A wolf might feed on small quantities of vegetation
, but his nature is designed to eat meat. So although your pet is a part of your family, he’s still built to eat raw meaty bones, organ meat, offal, and yes, fruits and veggies too, but in small quantities to meet his nutritional requirements.
Why make the choice to feeding RAW and not feed a vegetarian food for dogs:
We see an alarming increase in various diseases in our dogs and other pets; diabetes and cancer, joint issues, autoimmune diseases, and whatnot. This is purely due to the lack of fresh, healthy food and an overdose of processed foods.
Therefore, I cannot stress enough how important nutrition is to your pet’s health.
If you as a vegetarian are hesitant to feed your pets a raw diet, you can go about and meet raw feeders; join a local community or speak with us. You will see and hear that pet owner who have become raw feeders swear by the benefits of switching to a raw diet.
Their dogs have a shiny new coat, their pets have whiter teeth, bad breath has disappeared and their dogs have gotten leaner and are more energetic.
Not only that, raw feeders will tell you that their pet’s poop has an almost negligible smell and crumbles like ash.
If that doesn’t convince you, meet their pets and spend some time with them and then observe your dog (if you already have one). Or click the link to learn more.
What options can we explore to feed RAW:
As a vegetarian pet owner, you can make sure that the butcher’s shop you are buying the meat from is hygienic. This will at least give you some satisfaction that your pet is being fed fresh, healthy meat, and not stale produce.
If you do decide to become a raw feeder, there are many things you can do and precautions you can take to minimize the uncomfortable feeling you might have when you touch raw meat.
- For starters, if you can afford it, buy a freezer which will store the raw meat separately and in a seperate part of the house (and not the kitchen).
- You can also keep a separate cutting area for the meat
- Use gloves when handling your pets food
- Keep a separate cutting board and knives, bowls and any other utensils for the meat
- Your apron can be different than the one you use for your fruits and veggies
- Wash and disinfect the area, the utensils and of course your hands after you are done feeding your dog.
- Order pre-packaged meat online and you can simply thaw and serve.
Let’s look at some of the essential things that your pet will lose out on when given a vegetarian food for dogs:
Lack of important Vitamins: Vitamins A & D for instance.
Taurine: The Wiki will tell you that Taurine is an important organic compound that is distributed in animal tissues. It is extremely important for the functioning of your dog’s cardiovascular system, the health of your pet’s retina and also for the functioning of their central nervous system.
- Possible protein deficiency.
- Vitamin B deficiencies, iron deficiencies and most importantly calcium deficiencies which are sourced from meat and other animal products
The lack of these important vitamins and minerals can lead to serious health issues in our pets.
You can most definitely feed your pet a customized diet containing portions of fruits and vegetables
to your dog if he has been diagnosed with food allergies or some disease.
If your pet has a food allergy there are ways to get around it, but don’t turn your natural carnivorous dog
into a vegetarian.
Dog’s stomachs aren’t created to digest plants and vegetation; they have a short GI tract. It does not have enough time to absorb all the nutrients it needs to be healthy. Also, look at your dog’s teeth and jaws; they are built to primarily chew bones & meat.
At the end of the day, we do realize that you own your pet and that you get to decide to feed vegetarian food for dogs. But it’s important to remember that your pet is not you. And it’s not fair to expect them to go against their natural instinct because you’ve turned vegetarian or are one. Their health should be of prime importance to you just like your own health is. If you’ve turned vegetarian for health reasons, then your pet’s health and its requirements should be important to you too.
You can just write to us and we’ll be glad to lay your concerns to rest.