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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted to start this thread to get more people's opinions and thoughts on feeding dogs a vegan diet. I have read and been a part of many arguments about vegan diets for pets and I always find it interesting.

I want to start out saying, that I do not feed my dog a vegan diet. Nor am I a fan of hearing people doing it. But I am open minded. I respect people's choices and if you are vegan, more power to you. But is it ethical to force your beliefs on your dog?

Many people start out by saying that dogs are omnivores, so they can be on a vegan diet. But omnivore by definition means that an animal eats both vegetation and meat. Dogs need the protein and supplements that are in meat to be healthy. And that leads me to the new vegetarian/vegan diets that pet food brands are coming out with. I feel like they are jumping into this "fad" for money and is the food truly safe for your pet?

People have argued that many of the foods are AFFCO approved. However, AAFCO in and of itself is controversial. They preform food trials for each brand of food, but only for 6 months and only on 8 dogs. And only 6 of those dogs have to actually complete those trials. So they are basing their findings on only 6 months of testing… and basically the AAFCO approval is that the dogs didn’t starve to death or drop dead of the food in the 6 month period. So they have no proof what the vegan diets can do over a long period of time. That’s like having someone eat McDonald’s every day for 6 months. I’m sure they would be doing okay… but in the long run, over years… that person is going to have some serious health issues. It just makes me nervous with all these new vegan diets coming out on the market.

When I worked at a vet clinic a few years back there were a handful of cases where people would bring in their sick pets and we came to find out that they had one day decided to feed their dog/cat nothing but a vegan diet. One cat was literally on the brink of death - but cats are a whole other story. So another fear of mine is people just thinking they can do this...suddenly feed their dog a vegan diet with no problem. I believe there are times when a vegan diet might be needed for health issues. But you need to work closely with your vet and make sure you are giving all the proper supplements as well and make sure your dog is healthy. And a lot of people just don't do enough research.

I know food allergies are a big concern with many pet owners and many dogs are becoming sensitive to certain proteins. My dog was one of them. I did a ton of research and worked with the vets I worked with to figure out what was best for him. I came to the conclusion that Maz is very sensitive to chicken and beef protein. Lamb is iffy as well. I now feed him Taste of the Wild baffalo, venison and fish foods and he has been doing wonderfully on them. There are novel proteins out there that could work for an allergy stricken dog. So again, jumping to the conclusion that "my dog just can't eat meat" doesn't seem very plausible. However, that doesn't mean there aren't certain dogs out there that truly can't and have medical issues that a vegan diet benefits them.

That all being said, I've also read reports on dogs that have done very well on vegan diets. However, I believe the owners of these dogs did a lot of research, knew what they were doing and made sure their dogs had everything they needed to be healthy. Again, my biggest fear are the people jumping on the new "fad".

Do any of you here feed your dog a vegan diet or know of someone that does? What are your experiences with it? How do you feel? Is it fair to make a dog eat a vegan diet just because someone doesn't like the thought of killing animals?

I hope this can be a good debate and I hope I have not offended anyone. I just think this is a very interesting topic and would like to discuss it more with like-minded people. Thanks! :)
 

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At this point, I'm very uncomfortable with the idea because it seems very...unnatural.

I don't disagree that dogs are more omnivorous and not obligate carnivores like cats; they can obviously receive nutrition from plants and thrive. But I just haven't done enough research to feel comfortable with a vegan diet. I would like to see studies that show dogs can absorb and utilize nutrients and proteins from plants just as efficiently as they can from meats. That would make me more at ease with the concept.
 

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I strongly disagree with it. I'm open minded about most things, but vegan diets for dogs are unnatural, and IMO incredibly unhealthy.
 

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I've tried a vegan diet for myself and after less than a week I failed... However I agree with most others here that a vegan diet for dogs is likely unhealthy and unnatural.
 

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Unless there is a specific health reason, such as the dog being allergic to most proteins and the owner doing a hard core elimination diet to try and figure out which protein the dog can handle, I'm against vegan diets for dogs.

Yeah they can survive on one, but I doubt that they'll thrive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Unless there is a specific health reason, such as the dog being allergic to most proteins and the owner doing a hard core elimination diet to try and figure out which protein the dog can handle, I'm against vegan diets for dogs.

Yeah they can survive on one, but I doubt that they'll thrive.
You pretty much summed up how I feel about vegan diets for dogs. :thumbsup:
 

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Like you, I have no problem with people wanting to live a vegan lifestyle. It's not me, but it is their choice. However, I don't believe a dog can live healthy on a vegan diet. I think there would be many nutritional defiencies.
 

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I think it's a bad idea unless for specific medical reasons. I doubt very much that you can raise a puppy to a healthy adult dog on a 100% vegan diet.
If you have problems with animals eating meat, don't get a dog - get a rabbit. I don't eat meat myself since I don't want to support that industry the way it's practiced here but I'm human, my body can handle it - my dogs can't.
 

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I'm vegan myself so I've seen a lot of articles and posts online about vegan diets for dogs. I have seen healthy dogs on vegan diets.. but I've also seen dogs that look down right ill on vegan diets(namely the ones who only eat veg*n kibble). I think it all depends on how much work people put into it. I wouldn't trust any vegan kibbles out there as a staple, but a home cooked diet with extra nutrients thrown in I could see working. That being said, my dog eats taste of the wild because I'm too paranoid about her health to try it out right now.
 

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People can decide for themselves whether they want to go vegan....dogs can too. Put a plate of lettuce and a plate of meat in front of your dog and see what he goes for. That's the answer, imo.
 
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I am really not keen on humans forcing their morality sense on a dog by way of food. If someone has ethical problems with eating meat, that's fine, they can make that choice. Forcing the dog to live on veggies to soothe 'your' conscience, though, that's just wrong. They don't have the teeth they do in order to eat nuts and berries.
 

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Rabbits eat their poo! they do that because or else they wouldn't be able to extract all the nutrients out of their food. It has to go through the digestive system twice.

I was watching this nature show about herbivore mammals. Their major issue of survival is to digest their food and that's why elephants are so big, thats why cows have four stomachs.

The cells of plants and animals are very different and it's much more difficult to break down plant cells than animal cells.

When even specialised herbivores have so much trouble with it I would not subject a carnivore to it.
 
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I just jumped on here to share this thread also http://www.dogforum.com/dog-food/vegan-diet-105634/

My dog just had a vet appointment last weekend and was told she is in excellent health! I did not tell the vet that I fed my pet a vegan diet until the end of the appointment, to which she replied, "Keep doing what you're doing, then! You've got one healthy dog there!"

I tried to share my experiences with having a healthy dog on a vegan diet, but was treated quite rudely by some people in that thread, so I decided to just stop arguing on the internet and just enjoy my healthy, happy pup.

If anyone wants more info / advice about vegan diets for dogs, please feel free to PM me anytime.

Some people have already PM'd me for more info about vegan diets and I was happy to help :wave:

The sad part is that most of those PMs started with..."I wanted to post in the Vegan post but was afraid to"...what a shame.

God Bless...
 
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