Being imperfectly natural we cannot always afford to buy the best, yet we want to do the best for our dogs.  So how can we navigate the tricky route of feeding your dog the best foods?

Meat
Organic meat could be a much healthier option for your dog, even if it means paying a few extra pounds.

Regular meat can be full of undesirable ingredients, such as residual hormones, anti-biotics, anti-fungal and lots of other medications and growth enhancers the animal was given when it was alive – and these ingredients could have unfortunate health effects for your dog.

Your dog’s detoxing organs such as their liver and kidneys can filter out some toxic ingredients, but be warned, they are not naturally designed to do so.

This means that your dog’s body is at risk of being overworked if they eat non-organic meat and could become tired, which could potentially lead to further issues in the body.

So, Organic really is the ideal.
How-ever I want to share some things you can do to help your dog if you cannot always find, buy or afford the organic option.

Feed food types that support their digestive system, liver and kidneys. In particular food types that nourish the structure of the digestive lining, as this is where around 90{4da997b282d5795c5afa16f0d1368cad8e81b680680781bf82c78f4866adc60f} of your dog’s immune system functions. This mean no gluten, ideally no grain and no sugars.

Use Supplements that also support their digestive system, liver and kidneys.
If your based in the UK then Land of Holistic Pets has a fantastic supplements range, as well as Hilton Herbs, Vince the Vet and Diet-Dog UK.
Bone Broth is also a wonderful gut healer and food at the same time.

Don’t forget that dogs need Bone Content! Human grade minces do not contain this. Dogs fed human grade meats consistently can miss out on the essential minerals they need for growth and a calm, nourished nervous system.
Always choose pet grade minces or if you do feed human minces ensure that bones are provided to either be eaten or gnawed down and provide the mineral content your dog needs.

Plants
Dogs need plants. They support and heal the gut lining and act as a prebiotic to overcome issues such as candida. The best type of plants for health issues include:

  • Garlic (at safe medicinal doses only)
  • Banana
  • Chicory
  • Berries
  • Asparagus (a small amount)

Whilst dogs need some plants, not all dogs need fruit and vegetables. Plants need not be vegetables. I believe all dogs need at least some plants, either the above list for maintaining a wonderful digestive system or at the very least, some herbs.
SeaHorse brand of Kelp is a great herb to add for instance or the plants based supplements from Smart Barf or Hilton Herbs.

Although plants are great for a balanced doggie diet, not all plants are suitable for your pet. Try not to feed them too much underground-grown veggies (carrots/parsnips etc.), any nightshade types (peppers, aubergines etc.) and avoid types of cabbage.
If you do provide vegetables you will need to break them down in a blender to ensure the dog can digest them sufficiently and safely.
 

Do I need to buy organic plants?
Again, like meat, organic fruits and vegetables are better for a dog’s wellbeing but they can come with a greater price tag.

However, if a non-organic plant has a thicker skin, peel or other outer casing, it’s unlikely that any pesticides would have reached the flesh and so those types of plants are perhaps ok not to buy organically.

Plants that have a thicker skin and could be purchased non-organically for your dog include:

  • Banana
  • Cauliflower
  • Asparagus
  • Sweet Potato
  • Green Beans

And plants you might provide your dog that should ideally be purchased organic (due having a thin skin or peel) include:

  • Strawberries
  • Apples
  • Celery
  • Cherries
  • Spinach
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Kale
  • Courgette
  • Parsley

If you have found this article useful you will LOVE my book!

Imperfectly Natural Canine is the latest part of the BBC’s Janey Lee Grace’s Imperfectly Natural series. Covering vaccines, diet, therapies, ailments and much more, my easy to read guide could help your dog live a much healthier lifestyle.