It is often considered that an ideal diet for dogs is meat. Meat, and more meat. However, it has been learned that wild dogs subsisting on meat will often consume the dried vomit of herbivores in order to incorporate some vegetation into their diet. The budding business of grain free dog food allows dog owners to give their pet a faithful imitation of their ancestral diet without going to any such extremes.
Too often, people make the mistake of thinking that their dog is able to eat whatever they, themselves, are able to consume. The digestive system of a dog, however, is different from that of humans and other animals considered to be omnivores. For instance, if one was to feed their dog a can of tuna with each meal, the dog may well die from mercury poison. Their digestive system will not process the mercury that is contained in tuna. It is this difference in digestive systems that makes grains difficult for a dog to process.
Animals that are either herbivore or omnivore contain an enzyme in their systems known as Salivary Amylase. This enzyme is contained in the saliva and allows starchy carbohydrates to be broken down into sugar. While dogs do possess this enzyme, it is located farther down in their digestive system and resides in the small intestine. This makes it much more difficult for the dog’s system to break down these carbohydrates. Dry dog food cannot consist of meat alone. This is because there would be nothing to hold the kibbles together. A doughy substance is needed in order to form the dry kibbles. Not only are cereal fillers such as wheat and corn used to bind the kibbles together, they add bulk to the dog food. This allows the company making the food to keep costs of production and retail at a reasonable price. Grain free dog food, on the other hand, contains much more protein. It is a more pure substance, and because it does not contain the filler found in the typical dry dog food, it is going to cost the consumer more money.
Despite the higher cost, grain free food remains an agreeable option for pet owners. This is because a dog food containing grain fillers will often give dogs an allergic reaction. Pet owners will spend countless dollars on shampoos and skin remedies in a misguided attempt to treat their dog’s scratching. Pet health begins from within, and that means feeding the pet a healthy diet that is rich in what nature intended the pet to consume.