BARF diet for dogs: what is it and how is it done?

BARF diet for dogs: what is it and how is it done?

The BARF diet for dogs proposes the use of raw, uncooked food, arguing that it is the most natural and healthy for domestic furry dogs.
The BARF diet for dogs proposes the use of raw, uncooked food, arguing that it is the most natural and healthy for domestic furry dogs.
According to ANFAAC (National Association of Pet Food Manufacturers) in Spain there are more than 28 million pets, of which the majority are dogs. These, mainly, feed on specialized feed for their diet , although there are also other new options, such as the BARF diet. There are many controversies about this option, while some consider it healthy and natural for furry ones, and others argue that it promotes some diseases for dogs in greater numbers. Here we tell you all about this BARF diet.

The BARF Diet (acronym for Biologically Appropriate Raw Food) which  consists of feeding completely raw products to domestic animals.

According to Animal Expert: “The objective is to recreate a diet that is as natural as possible and similar to that which canines would have in the wild. Pieces of  meat, viscera, organs, muscle, meaty bones and eggs are also included. Smaller quantities are also included. moderate amounts of  fruits and vegetables .” Specifically, this diet was designed by  an Australian veterinarian named Ian Billinghurst.

What is the BARF diet made up of?

In summary, we will tell you what the BARF diet is mainly made up  of:

– 60% bones with meat and muscle.
– 25% lean meat (can be fish).
– 15% raw fruit and vegetables, eggs and organ meats.
– Contains no preservatives.
– Does not contain cereals.

However, regarding this “15% of fruits and vegetables” there are controversies. Some experts say that  it is not proven that dogs can fully assimilate the nutrients offered by totally raw fruits and vegetables. With regard to raw meat , although it is true that dogs can digest it, it must be taken into account that if the raw meat does not have a quality certificate, the dog could contract infections and parasites. Also, some dogs just don’t like to eat raw meat.

What are the benefits of the BARF diet for dogs?

Since there is controversy regarding the BARF diet, here is a list of pros and cons of this diet, according to the opinions of certain experts:

Pros of the BARF diet

– You will have proper hydration , manifesting in healthy skin and shiny hair .

– Your dog will drink less water , because his diet already contains a lot of water.

– Your teeth will be clean and healthy.

– Your immune system will be strengthened , reducing allergies and intolerances.

– Your stools will be  better:  less voluminous and less odorous .

– Your dog will have less gases .

– Your breath will be better.

– Your dog will like it very much (although not everyone, of course).

– You will have a  more positive state of health and behavior .

– You will have more energy for your physical activity.

Cons of the BARF diet

– May have nutritional efficiencies . When you feed your dog a  quality feed, you know that the  nutritional balance is perfect , in such a way that when doing the BARF diet, it is necessary  to pay close attention to properly balance the nutrients.

– Food that is not fresh or does not come from trusted sources can lead to bacterial infections . To avoid this, use quality ingredients and above all, freeze meat.

– Bones can be harmful.  This is one of the main reasons why many veterinarians are not fond of this diet. By chewing on the bone, your dog can swallow small pieces that could accumulate in his intestine, causing constipation, blocking it or even perforating it, which would require surgery.

–  Broken teeth  are another major concern , as well as  gum problems .

– It is a complicated diet to manage.  Consulting your  vet is recommended , both to make sure your dog is getting the right nutrients in the right proportions, and to verify that this is the right diet for your dog. In fact,  it is advisable to carry out  regular veterinary check-ups  every 2 or 3 months.