Did you know: As much as 50% of nutrients and vitamins such as A, E, D and K are lost before your dog's food is packed. Key vitamins your dog's body needs for growth and overall health. Learn the truth about your dog's processed food and what you can do to recover these lost nutrients.
Nutrition is the basis of good health for our pet friends. Diet is the most essential component of your dog’s health. The best nutrition for your pet isn’t unlike the best nutrition for you – it includes an array of whole foods enriched with minerals and vitamins, supplements and enzymes, to prevent disease, address health concerns, and promote optimal health. Many people assume dog food nutrients are abundant however during the processing stage of dog food nutrients are lost. The loss of nutrients in processed dog food is something that should be of great concern to dog owners.
The loss of nutrients in processed dog food
The preparation of commercial dog foods – canned and kibble – provides many benefits, including improved consistency, convenience, enhanced texture and flavor, decreased spoilage and pathogen control. But, extensive processing may create unwholesome byproducts, destroy essential nutrients and increase variability. Even worse, this creates a dilemma for formulators to ascertain that a dog food is fortified sufficiently while maintain minimal, negative processing effects. An article on dogsnaturallymagazine.com states that raw ingredients of dog foods are heated, steamed, and or pressured in the manufacturing process to treat them. Now, imagine cooking a fish three times before eating it. The result, as the article explains can be the “destruction of important nutrition of the dog food”. Unlike human foods, a majority of the starting ingredients that are used in commercial dog diets have already been processed extensively (e.g., bone meal, rice bran, rice bran, meat, etc.), all of these ingredients in are mixed together and processed under quite extreme conditions, (e.g. extrusion) and the final product expected to be preserved for close to a year in ambient conditions.
Which nutrients are lost?
To some degree at each processing step all vitamins seem to be affected from to production to shelf-storage.
The most significant is the loss of fat-soluble vitamins (A, E, D, and K) with more than 50 percent lost before the food is packed.
The B-vitamin thiamine (water-soluble) can almost be lost completely because of its reactivity with thiaminase in organ meats and fish, and enzymes sulfites, heat, elevated pH, moisture, sulfites, as well as elevated pH (Coelho, 2003).
What to do to recover these lost nutrients
A proper balanced diet is very important for your dog. In order to function normally, dogs need a certain combination of vitamins, protein, fats, water and carbohydrates every day. The loss of nutrients in processed dog food can be corrected by adding synthetic minerals and vitamins in the form of mixes into the food. This form of super-fortification can greatly help support nutritional adequacy in processed dog foods. Mixes are intended as a base where you add fresh foods like eggs, meat, and dairy (cottage cheese, kefir, and yogurt) to make a complete diet. Even though they are more expensive compared with homemade diets, they make preparation easier and offer similar nutritional benefits, as well as aiding to ensure that all of your dog’s nutritional requirements are met. There is a wide range of products available on the markets, ranging from those that are whole diets without added foods (designed to remain balanced even when fresh foods are put in), to those that offer little nutritional info and should not be depended on to offer complete nutrients, but can be used occasionally when feeding your dog. As such, it is important to pay attention when choosing which products to feed your pets for the sake of their nutrition. And finally as another alternative, Vita Bully Vitamins for Bullies are healthy, safe, vet-approved multivitamin that contain many key nutrients listed above that go missing in your dog's food. They'll help your bully regain those missing key nutrients they need for overall health.