Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Are Dogs Becoming Herbivores Through Their Genes?

Source https://www.petage.com/studies-show-genetics-evolution-have-enabled-dogs-to-thrive-on-plant-based-diets/

Additional Resource https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/nutrition-general-feeding-guidelines-for-dogs

Although it is commonly known that dogs have an omnivorous diet as a result of their common ancestor, the wolf, being a carnivore, and being able process plants and other meats now. The article, “Studies Show Genetics, Evolution have Enabled Dogs to Thrive on Plant-Based Diets” created by Pet Age Staff, stated that recent studies revealed that dogs can transition their diet to thrive on a properly formulated herbivorous diet. 

Experts have identified that domesticated dogs have developed 10 genes that have allowed them to process starch- rich plant foods and thrive on herbivorous diets. They have completed a study and found that those dogs maintained great health marks after eating a plant based diet for one year. Also, as stated from the article, “Properly formulated plant-based foods have many health benefits for dogs. Most plant proteins are hypoallergenic, and new studies show they may also improve gut health and digestion, increase longevity, and improve overall health and well-being” (Pet Age Staff 2024). This study also revealed a dog's plate based diet can improve the environment as well as animal agriculture contributes significantly to greenhouse emissions and water and air pollutants. 

Although this is an interesting article, I am wondering how accurate this information is. Being a dog owner myself, I can’t imagine feeding my dog an entirely plant based diet because I’m afraid she won’t get the nutrients she needs. I am interested to hear more about this topic and  if more studies will be performed to determine the long term health effects for dogs being on this diet. 

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