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Vegan diet for dogs

Without the typical, processed, 'dog food'...

1 - 8 of 8 posts


..1 ..1 TAS Posts: 2265
1 10 Nov 2012
Hi all! Yes, I know this topic has come up time and time again! However, I'm wondering if it is possible for me to have my dog on a vegan diet without purchasing processed (vegan) dog biscuits and canned food??

I can't stand the thought of animals (particularly ex racehorses) being exploited and abused, then slaughtered and put into a dog food can to feed my pets.

Would a diet of vegetables, legumes, grains and beans suffice? Are there any important nutritional factors that need to be taken into consideration when feeding dogs a vegan diet? My dog is not thriving on his crappy diet of biscuits and canned meat, so I think a vegan diet would be much better for him, anyway!

Thanks! happy
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NickM NickM NSW Posts: 71
2 10 Nov 2012
On  Gary Yourofsky's website (www.adaptt.org) he names this company that sell vegan dog (and cat) food.

http://store.nexternal.com/vegancats/vegan-dog-food-c3.aspx?

It's American.. not sure if Aussies have any stores that do this sort of thing. Apparently Gary's vegan dog was one of the healthiest dogs his vet had seen and made a point of telling the other vets in the practice. Gary's dog passed away when the dog was 15.
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..1 ..1 TAS Posts: 2265
3 10 Nov 2012
Thank you, Nick! But I'm trying to seek advice on just feeding him veggies, legumes, grains, etc. I don't want to feed him processed food as I don't know precisely what's in them, and they give him food allergies. sad
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I_love_cows I_love_cows SA Posts: 4
4 11 Nov 2012
Hi Maggie,
I recently started buying dry food for our dogs from Vegan Pet. They are based in Victoria and post Australia wide. All the ingredients are human consumption grade and it is a complete nutritionally balanced diet for dogs (as well as being wheat free). Our dogs love it!
I am still transitioning our dogs from a diet including meat to a vegan diet, so I am still cooking up food for them; mince (from our local organic supplier - obviously not ideal, but after lengthy discussions with the farmer if I was a cow being raised for slaughter, I would want to live on his farm, they are pasture fed and free range right up until they are slaughtered just up the road at the local abattoir sad ), veggies, rice, pasta, coconut oil and water.
I am encountering resistance from my hubby when it comes to putting them on a vegan diet so I'm still talking small steps. When they are meat free I will still cook up food for them, to bulk out the dry food and give them a bit of variety. From what I understand (and I could be wrong!) for a dog, consuming just cooked rice, past & veg alone isn't a complete diet for them. They can certainly thrive on a vegan diet but there some nutrients that will be missing from just a pasta, rice, veg type diet.
Speaking to a vet could help - if they are open to a dog being fed a vegan diet - I would imagine a lot of them would react with horror -  but if you have an open minded vet they will be able to advise you accordingly.
happy
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..1 ..1 TAS Posts: 2265
5 11 Nov 2012
Thanks! I would love to give him VeganPet, but $10 of 1kg is just far too much money, he eats 3-4 cups of dry food a day (and is still underweight) so that would be used up in less than a week. I have only had him for 10 months, and I've had to change food brands 3 times! He went from Advance, to Optimum to CopRice, and he still gets food allergies. So that's why I'm trying to avoid the nasty fillers associated with most brands of dry food.

I'm thinking of giving him the Augustine Vegan Dog Supplement, with lentils, quinoa, rice, pasta, veggies and maybe a bit of gravy or vegan stock every now and then to make it more tasty.

Do let me know how your dogs go on the VeganPet, though. Maybe in the future I might be able to get it for him.

EDIT: Ingredients for the Augustine Vegan Dog Supplement are at the bottom of the page. Thoughts? http://store.augustineapproved.com/augustines-superboost-220g/
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I_love_cows I_love_cows SA Posts: 4
6 11 Nov 2012
Completely understand, the VeganPet food is pretty pricey. They do have a 15kg bag - but again, it's still pretty dear.
We have 2 dogs but they are only little - so don't really eat much.
The Augustine's supplement sounds great, it would certainly be worth trying, I might get some and use that in the food I cook for the dogs when I stop adding the mince.
The VeganPet lists Amylase, Taurine and L Carnitine as being 'added to ensure wellbeing' - but I have no idea what these actually are or what they do.
happy
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..1 ..1 TAS Posts: 2265
7 11 Nov 2012
I_love_cows said:
Completely understand, the VeganPet food is pretty pricey. They do have a 15kg bag - but again, it's still pretty dear.
We have 2 dogs but they are only little - so don't really eat much.
The Augustine's supplement sounds great, it would certainly be worth trying, I might get some and use that in the food I cook for the dogs when I stop adding the mince.
The VeganPet lists Amylase, Taurine and L Carnitine as being 'added to ensure wellbeing' - but I have no idea what these actually are or what they do.
happy
I asked Augustine Approved about the Amylase, Taurine (I've heard this can lead to blindess if cats don't get enough) and L Carnitine and this is the response I got. They sound really good, I'll definitely be giving this to my dog when he goes vegan!! (Ignore the allergy bit.)

"Hi Maggie thank you for your enquiry regarding Rupert.  There are many causes for intolerances and allergies and while you may be correct in saying it is the meat, it may also be grains (highly likely) or a number of other ingredients causing the issues.  For your peace of mind, there are inexpensive tests you can do to find out and you can even test against our ingredients.

You do not have to turn your dog entirely vegan but at the very least you can reduce the consumption of meat by feeding a few times a week.  Which ever way you chose we can guide you every step of the way.

Augustine's SuperFood is made using wholefood ingredients which are vastly superior to synthetic ingredients manufactured in a lab.  Many synthetic nutrients cannot be metabolised by the body, thus in turn either depleting the body of it's own stores of those nutrients to help compensate for the lack of, and this could lead to long term deficiencies, or the body just expels them out the other end, which could still potentially cause deficiencies. Every dog is different and there will always be the genetic freaks that live to an old age on processed foods.

Amylase
Dogs produce their own amylase and it helps to break down starch in their diet. Fresh fruits and vegetables are regarded as good dietary sources of amylase.

Amylase is an enzyme (generally any nutrient ending with –ase is an enzyme) and most of it is produced in the pancreas by dogs. People produce most of their amylase in saliva, but dogs and cats do not due to their carnivore ancestry and basic dietary nature. Amylase and amylopectin – and the amount produced by the dog is dependent upon the amount of starch in its diet. I am aware of amylase supplements for pigs and poultry which are fed high starch diets based on wheat, corn, etc but I have never come across an amylase supplement for dogs or cats. Please note that our food is not high in starch (and contains no grain type fillers), so there are no issues with needing to produce high amounts of amylase in any event.

Taurine
Taurine is an amino acid. It is not essential in the diets of dogs as they can manufacture their own from methionine and cysteine (two more amino acids that are essential) and Vitamin B, assuming the diet is not deficient in either of these and our Augustine's SuperFood diets are not (more so methionine than cysteine, as methionine can cover for cysteine). With the versions of Augustine's SuperFood that you can mix with meat, the dog will naturally get even higher sources of taurine as it is readily available in meat, especially meats like kangaroo that people choose to feed (naturally we have no control over what meat, if any, people decide to feed their dogs).

L Carnitine
Vegan diets can be an issue as they do not include meat and obviously dogs are not naturally vegans, if they were they would be cows. Carnitine is a deritvative of lysine (an essential amino acid) that is metabolised in the liver and kidneys. Carnitine is involved in the Vitamin B complex and has influence on healthy cardiovascular metabolism. For meat eating dogs generally supplementation is not required as red meat is one of the best sources followed by fish, poultry, wheat and soy. Vegetables sources include asparagus and avocados. Dairy products also contain L-carnitine particularly milk and cheese but as you know we do not use any of these.  Our food contains ample amounts of green lentils which are very rich in Lysine and dogs can convert this into Carnitine.

I hope I have answered your questions satisfactorily, please contact me anytime if you need more help with Rupert.

Have a lovely day! happy"
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I_love_cows I_love_cows SA Posts: 4
8 11 Nov 2012
Wow, that is fantastic info, thanks so much for sharing it!
happy
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