Can dogs live healthily on a vegetarian diet?
There are many differing opinions as to whether a dog is a carnivore or omnivore. Dogs are omnivores and cats are true carnivores. This doesn’t mean that a dog can’t just be fed on meat, balanced appropriately for essential vitamins, minerals and amino acids in proteins.
Digestibility, bioavailability and nutritional value are critical to a diet. Dogs have a requirement for 22 amino acids of which 12 can be synthesised and 10 have to be consumed. Cats only synthesise 11, Taurine has to be included in diet as although dogs can synthesise, cats cannot and therefore it has to be consumed by a cat, mice have very high natural taurine levels, I wonder why?
Digestible protein has to be right, therefore in a vegetarian diet for a dog, egg could be used which has the highest nutritional value, unless of course you want to go vegan!
Dried egg is expensive and thus generally is supplemented by other high protein ingredients which are not so expensive but will have a much lesser nutritional value. There are few vegetarian diets on the market and those there are have lower protein levels and seldom declare the % of digestible proteins.
Yes, dogs are omnivores, so the odd vegetarian meal, balanced correctly, could be fed to a dog, Naturediet believes that a balanced diet with meat and vegetables is preferable for a dog.