Buzz asked in PetsDogs · 1 decade ago

Please dispel my doubts on the BARF diet for dogs?

I heard about the BARF (bones and raw food) diet a while back, and initially thought it was a good idea - what could be better than feeding simple things that a wolf would find in the wild?

BUT I now have doubts, and I think this is actually quite a dangerous thing to believe in (although I'd be happy if someone could explain it to me differently, as I like the idea of this diet). I think it's perfect for cats, first of all, because cats are pure carnivores. They don't need any of the rubbish they put in cat food. But for dogs...

Dogs are omnivores like us. They need carbohydrate. Feed a human on nothing but meat and we'll live for, what, 20 years if that (and be very unhealthy). There's a reason why dog food is not the same as cat food. Feed a dog on cat food and it will become ill because there isn't enough carbohydrate.

I suggest that maybe modifications need to be made. I intend to feed my future dog on the BARF diet, but supplemented with carbohydrate.


Wasn't enough room to put this, but people often incorrectly assume that what a dog eats in the wild is the best possible thing for it to eat in captivity. Wild canines do not fulfill the same life expectancy as captive ones - they eat to survive, not to be healthy, and as long as they survive long enough to reproduce then their genes will be passed on.

Update 2:

Thanks everyone, I didn't realise the BARF diet includes carbs as well.

Dogs are omnivores. 34 years in vet tech and you don't know that? Their teeth are different from pure carnivores. They do need a diet that is mostly meat but supplemented with carbohydrates. Their tooth structure is similar to that of apes - which are omnivores.

Before dog food was around, dogs didn't live that long.

And dogs are different from wolves, totally different although they are the same species - and different kinds of dog need slightly different diets (some are prone to obesity etc). But the basic diet is the same. However as I said above, what an animal eats in the wild is not necessarily the best for them. Take iguanas for example - in the wild they sometimes feed on meat. Feed them meat in captivity and you lower their life expectancy drastically. But even so, wolves in the wild eat berries and fruit. Not much carbohydrate, but a little is essential.

9 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The BARF diet does give dogs carbs - by way of fruits and veggies. While dogs are indeed omnivores, they generally don't raid the wheat fields looking for their grains. In fact, many dogs have wheat allergies, so I would not supplement carbs in this manner.

    I have not switched the the BARF diet - I don't think that I would. I feed high quality kibble and then supplement that with cottage cheese, carrots, peas, whatever veggies are left hanging around in the fridge. Also, we do pick up raw bones for the dogs at the local butcher. So you can do a similar diet - kibble based - and still have healthy pets.

    Our dogs are all in top form - the vet is amazed every time we come in because our dogs just don't look like other people's overweight sloppy pets. They have beautiful coats, and the teeth are in good shape too.

  • 1 decade ago

    If you'll have a good look at the structure of dogs teeth you can easily say that dogs are carnivores Not omnivores!

    Also omnivores have very long intestines (humans,bear,pigs)because plant food needs more time to be digested and absorbed,dogs (wolf,cat,fox) intestines are relatively short it can easily digest raw meet and bones but it struggles with plant food (usually it comes out undigested).

    Raw meaty bones combined with organ meat,raw whole fish once a week,whole egg once a week,piece of apple and few berries will be the best diet for your dog.

    Few points in here: But don't make a false assumptions yet! Have a look at this: and decide yourself who's right or wrong.

  • 1 decade ago

    Dogs are NOT omnivores they ARE carnivores though not obligate like cats..they do NOT need carbs....the reason why cat food and dog food are different has absolutely nothing ot do with carbs.

    A BARF or other type of raw diet is very good for dogs.It is a more natural way of eating for dogs.Dogs are designed to extract nutrition from meats, organs and bones not from grains and veggies..They have teeth made special for ripping, tearing and making into size to swallow without thorough chewing like humans have to do. They have shorter digestive tracts and stronger stomach acids..They do not process carbs well at all.

    Source(s): vet tech for 34 years
  • 1 decade ago

    The BARF diet isn't only bones and raw meat. I don't worry about samonella or bacteria as the bones and meat I feed my dogs is fresh. I would get sick from eating it, but dogs don't as their intestines are shorter and it's ok for them.

    My 12 yr old dog started acting like a puppy when we put her on the BARF diet. Our doctor fully endorsed the diet for the dog. We had positive results with this diet. Fresh breath and clean teeth and no allergy problems.

    As for the theory that dogs aren't like the wolves because they've been domisticated; Domistication has nothing to do with it. Dogs simply are not wolves. They aren't the same size or intelligence. It's like comparing apples and oranges. However, commercial dog food has only been around 70 years. You have to ask your self, what did people feed their dog before dog food was sold in a bag.

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  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    Google Barf diets or uncooked feeding for canines - there is fairly some stable information on line re ratios of bone, muscle meat, organs, etc. A rule of thumb is two% to 3% of the grownup's bodyweight, with a nursing lady and puppies that rule does not persist with. additionally, bypass to the B-Naturals website and scroll all the way down to uncooked diets, it provides a robust evaluate of muscle meat (protein source), organs, etc. and recipes for novices. stable success.

  • 1 decade ago

    Cats as well as dogs can get bacteria from raw meat. Same reason we cook our food. Especially cats can get toxoplasmosis, which is then dangerous for pregnant women and it is spread by irresponsible cat owners who feed raw meat to their cats. The same goes for dogs (ecchinococcus, salmonella, mad cow disease, trichiniasis, etc., ) is dangerous for them. so I would go for the human food diet, with some veg and rice(carbohydrate), but not raw.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    todays dogs have been domesticated,,, been a very long time since they were wolves.......... TIMBERWOLF dog food is , i think, exactly what you are looking for,,,,, look it up,, read the ingredients,,, make a informed decision... best of luck to you

  • 1 decade ago

    I don't believe in the BARF diet.

    There are alternatives that are balanced nutrition... like EVO dogfood.

    Source(s): Breeder/exhibitor.
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    domesticated dogs are far from their ancestors the wolf and because of this their stomach has become domesticated too.

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