“I Never Feed my Dog Human Food”

How many times do we hear this?

Where did the idea come from?

What is ‘human’ food anyway?

Both humans and dogs are omnivorous and need much the same things but in different ratios. We can digest grains better than dogs and they eat more meat along with bones – having better teeth for breaking them up. Much of what both species eats naturally would be the same, however.

We humans now eat much too much sugar, salt and additives, stuff we also put into ‘dog’ food. Not natural food for dogs at all. Neither are all the fillers and grains we bulk it out with.

Basically these people are saying that the only food they will feed their dog is processed food, almost irrespective of what’s in it. It has to be bought from a shop, in a packet or tin and labelled ‘dog food’.

‘I don’t believe in feeding my dog human food’ takes on a moral tone.

I myself, years ago and knowing nothing about it, congratulated myself on finding the cheapest dog food. It was often ‘working dog’ or ‘greyhound’ food that was exempt from VAT. So long as it was labelled ‘dog food’ it had to be okay.

It’s ironic, isn’t it, that a food for a dog requiring bursts of great energy like greyhounds should contain the most rubbish.

The 10 worst UK dog foods 2017

Today I mostly feed my dogs raw food. It contains chicken or turkey, ground bones and all, with various vegetables added. It’s commercially prepared as ‘dog food’ so that’s okay then.

But chicken or vegetables brought from the supermarket, or leftovers from my own meals, virtually the same constituents even if prepared differently – isn’t okay. It’s ‘human’ food.

Pip’s dinner

I now feed my dogs as I do simply because I believe it to be the best for them. Good food affects both their mental and physical health.

As well as the raw food, I also feed my dogs kibble. It’s the best kibble I can find. At a talk explaining how my chosen brand was sourced and made, I felt sufficiently confident to eat a bit myself. No thank you! ‘Dog food’ is not for me.

My elderly Lurcher, Pip, prefers kibble and raw together. (There are differing views on mixing the two – a discussion for another time).

It’s logical to feed our dogs on the best and most appropriate food for their species whether humans eat it too or not. Ideally the same for ourselves also. (Oh dear, for me that should mean out with the ice cream, potato crisps and wine!).

I have a sneaking suspicion that there is a subtext to all this. Could there still be a school of thought that believes we should not ‘allow’ our dogs to eat the same things as we eat because it might encourage them to feel that they are our equals?

How to be an Alpha Male according to wolves (Readers Digest)

To visit my website along with many case stories of dogs I have worked with, please go to www.dogidog.co.uk

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About Theo Stewart

I am a dog Behaviourist (INTODogs-ABTC - AAB) and trainer covering Beds, Herts, Cambs and Bucks, a 'Victoria Stilwell' Positively Dog Trainer (VSPDT) and a member of the IMDT. Graduate ISCP, International School for Canine Practitioners. My main site: www.dogidog.co.uk
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