Canine Longevity Diet
Dedicated to Breaking the record for Canine Longevity (29 years-5 months)
My first vege dog was a Lab/Airedale mix who died at the age of 7 from a tick disease Ehrlichiosis that was improperly treated by her vet. She reached the weight of 96 pounds.During her entire life, she was seen by Veterinarians, who performed routine tests on her, and with the exception of a skin allergy to certain grasses, never had any health problems. Her loss has inspired me to research canine health and longevity.
As the owner of four dogs( three female and one male-mixed Lab breeds),I've found myself increasingly committed and concerned about their health and longevity. Being the developer of a Vegetarian program, I questioned whether the vegetarian diet could improve canine health like it does for humans.
Of course, the first argument people are going to have is that "dogs are carnivores".
DOGS... OMNIVORES OR CARNIVORES?
According to Rebecca Remillard, DVM, a Specialist in Veterinary Nutrition: "Canines are in the order Carnivora, but I think their feeding behaviors are best described as omnivorous. The term carnivore applies to their taxonomic classification, not their feeding behavior. Taxonomically, dogs are members of the order Carnivora, a very diverse group, that includes 12 families of more than 260 species, some of which are herbivorous mammals (the panda). There are three types of feeding behavior (omnivorous, herbivorous and carnivorous) all of which can be found among different members of the order Carnivora." (From an email response to the question of dogs being looked upon as carnivorous or omnivorous in the newsletter of the American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition.)
- The domesticated canine is in fact an Opportunistic OMNIVORE and a Scavenger, who can even digest it's own fecal matter and derive about 5-10% of the nutrients contained within.
- The domesticated canine does NOT, hunt down it's food and eat it,blood,bones and all.In fact, the domesticated canine can and is trained to bring dead animals to the feet of it's master(hunter) without eating it
- The dental structure of the domesticated canine is in fact, capable of chewing both vegetable matter and meat tissue.A fact presented on several documentaries about the development of Dogs
- The domesticated canine is completely dependent upon human beings for it's food. The commercial dog food industry by it's very nature, is UNNATURAL for dogs, if you want to discuss the concept of the natural diet of dogs.One could easily argue that the teeth and claws of dogs did not develop due to an evolutionary need to tear into bags of kibble.With the exception of some larger breeds,the domesticated canine does NOT have claws capable of opening metal cans- which is what much of it's food is stored in at this point in it's evolution as an animal
- The majority of dog BREEDS, are the creation of MAN. Designed to suit the purposes and needs of MAN.
- February 6, 2005 (Fisher Center for Alzheimer's Research Foundation) -- Aging beagles supplied with a diet rich in nutrients found in fruits and vegetables, given exercise, and social and environmental stimulation remained more youthful and smarter than canines given run-of-the-mill treatment, a new study from the National Institute of Aging (NIA) reports
- Interesting that the things that are being shown to improve human and canine performance are NOT from dead meat but instead from living herbs, fruits and vegetables
- A key scientifically proven factor in canine longevity and reduction of bone diseases is High nutrtient-reduced caloric intake
Highlights of Pet Product Sampling
HealthyStuff.org tested over 400 pet products, including beds, chew toys, stuffed toys, collars, leashes, and tennis balls. Since there are no government standards for hazardous chemicals in pet products, it is not surprising that toxic chemicals were found.
* 45% of pet products tested had detectable levels of one or more hazardous chemicals, including:
* One-quarter of all pet products had detectable levels of lead.
* 7% of all pet products had lead levels greater than 300 ppm -- the current CPSC lead standard for lead in children's products.
* Nearly half of pet collars had detectable levels of lead; with 27% exceeding 300 ppm -- the CPSC limit for lead in children's products.
* One half (48%) of tennis balls tested had detectable levels of lead. Tennis balls intended for pets were much more likely to contain lead. Sports tennis balls contained no lead.
Rather than get into any long arguments regarding a vegetarian diet for dogs, let me simply state the following.
Throughout their lives their diets have consisted of commercially prepared Vegetarian dog foods-designed to meet the standards of the AAFCO for adult dogs as well as Home made Vege-Dog meals.
To our Home made meals we add blackstrap molasses, pro biotics and digestive enzymes, flax seed meal and oil, flower pollen as well as a variety of vegetables, whole grains, pulses, fruits and herbs.
By adding chlorophyll to their diet and water as puppies, they become very accustomed to the taste of greens.
For the record-While I have never engaged them in any type of hunting, given the opportunity, every vegetarian dog that I have ever owned, has chased and killed rats, mongoose and birds. The idea that somehow putting them on a vegetarian diet has altered their instinctive nature is laughable.
Vegetarian Canine Longevity Champions
Bramble-27 years old, Tykie-23 years old
Bluey-29 years-5 months-diet not found
Current Guinnness Record Oldest Living Dog Otto-21 yrs old
That ANY dog has lived past 20 years of age demonstrates how poorly the domesticated canine has been cared for as a group and why the total concept of life expectancy among canines needs to be completely reevaluated
That there are documented cases of Vegedogs living past the age of 20 years old, demonstrates that the vegetarian diet for dogs can be just as beneficial for health and longevity as any other proposed canine diet
That a Vegedog came within a year and a half of being the Oldest Living documented dog, speaks for itself. Whether as a human being or dog owner you decide to become a complete vegetarian or not, if health and longevity are of importance to you, then you must incorporate vegetarianism into your lifestyle.