I have been asked many times by people who feed their dogs a raw food diet about the use of grains as part of canine nutrition. I am aware that there is a great deal of controversy about the use of grains in the canine diet.
Since many of the people who ask about this are using Canine Health- The Miracle Dog Food , which is my pre-mix and the diet that I have advocated for over 25 years, I respond to their inquiries with the following information which is based on knowledge of chemistry and the facts.
For those who are using Canine Health- The Miracle Dog Food we look at the way in which the food is prepared “in reverse”.
Canine Health is prepared with 6 ounces of protein to 7 1/2 ounces of water, which makes a total of 13 1/2 ounces. To this we add 1/2 to 1 ounce of oil and 3 scoops of Canine Health, which is a mixture of 6 different organic grains and 9 different vegetables and herbs. These 3 scoops equal 2 ounces of which one ounce is vegetables.
So the total amount of grain is approximately 1 ounce per pound of food, which is equal to approximately 6% of the total prepared recipe.
In reality this is quite a small amount.
I use grain to provide glucose or storage glycogen, which is vital to a healthy canine diet.
Every athlete knows that taking in pasta or grain loading prior to an athletic event, provides the necessary storage glycogen for the athlete to have sufficient glucose for muscle performance for the duration activity. This glucose is necessary for all muscle function.
I have seen that wheat, corn and soy can cause problems with animals so we do not put them in Canine Health. Our grains are certified organic, pre-cooked and freeze-dried which makes them easy to digest free of preservatives and incredibly healthy.
Some dogs do well on a completely grain-free diet, and for them I made Veg-to-Bowl , a grain-free mix of wonderful dehydrated and freeze-dried veggies. This mixture blended with meat and oils makes a wonderful grain-free meal.
But some dogs do better with grains, in fact, in my experience, many, many dogs improve dramatically when using our Canine Health with raw or cooked meat.
Nature made all muscle and brain function (99%) using glucose and oxygen. Carbohydrates, such as grains, are stored in the in the liver as glycogen this is then released as glucose in the blood as the body requires it.
For over 55 years most of the original “commercial dog foods” were made with 100% grain, using primarily wheat and corn. We know now that these grains were used because they were inexpensive fillers. Today most commercial foods still contain 40-70% grains.
I am not here to knock any other manufacturer, but I know that the companies who manufacture these foods don’t have even the slightest clue about good nutrition for dogs. What we do know, is that given in small amounts with lots of other nutritionally sound additions, grain is very beneficial to a dog’s overall good health.
I see that dogs do incredibly well and thrive on 6-10% grain
in their diet. Dogs are able to utilize the glucose from grains, as athletes do when they are performing.
We have come a long way in understanding how best to feed our canine companions.
We now know how to do it better and improve our lives and the lives of our companions by providing the best nutrition possible.
I am positive that the real problem with commercial pet food is the added preservatives, coloring agents, poor quality protein sources and poor quality fat sources.
Feeding natural and healthy protein, rotating the source each week, adding good healthy oils, also rotated weekly, together with vegetables and a small amount of organic grains, will dramatically improve a dog’s health and well-being.
This is what I know makes the optimal diet for dogs.