What Is a BARF Diet for Dogs?
The BARF diet refers to a type of dog food diet that includes only raw foods. BARF or Biologically Appropriate Raw Food diet has become a popular diet for dogs because of its health benefits.
The BARF diet removes processed meat and other less-than-desirable ingredients used in commercial dog food. It’s also known to contain a higher amount of protein than traditional dog food. BARF eliminates all processed ingredients and instead consists of:
- Fruits and vegetables
- Whole grains
- Organ meat
- Raw muscle meat
- Raw meaty bones
This raw food diet is similar to what dogs naturally ate before humans domesticated them. K9 Kravings raw dog food was developed as BARF-friendly dog food by a world-renowned animal nutrition doctor. It’s a great option for those seeking to try a BARF diet for their dogs.
Is the BARF Diet Good for Dogs?
The BARF diet has gained popularity in recent years for its health benefits. This raw diet has benefits that go beyond just animal nutrition. It also has overarching environmental benefits.
The production of raw dog food has a lower carbon footprint than most traditional commercial dog foods, making it more environmentally friendly. A BARF diet also consists of more minerals and nutrients utilized by a dog or cat's body, resulting in less waste.
A raw diet has been shown to result in the following health improvements:
- Weight loss and muscle gain
- Less anxious behavior
- Improvements in odor
- Dental health improvements
- Allergy elimination
- Increased energy levels
- Improvement in positive behavior
There have been many health benefits associated with raw diets for dogs like BARF. Dogs thrive on a raw diet because it’s more nutritious and includes foods that are more natural for them to eat.
What Can I Feed My Dog on the BARF Diet?
An important part of BARF is ensuring that your dog receives balanced nutrition. It’s difficult for many dog owners to give their dogs a properly balanced raw food diet without using nutritionally dense raw dog food like K9 Kravings.
A good rule of thumb is to transition to a raw food diet slowly. Give your dog a short period of fasting before changing over to a BARF diet. The fast should last for about half a day and should not exceed a full day.
The proportions of the BARF diet are recommended as follows:
- 5% liver
- 5% organ meat
- 10% fruits and vegetables
- 10% raw meat and ground bone
- 70% raw muscle meat
A BARF diet should include both plant-based and carnivorous foods. Plant-based foods included in the BARF diet are:
- Fresh herbs
- Fresh vegetables like squash, leafy greens, pumpkin, carrots, broccoli, and carrots
- Fresh fruits like blueberries, apples, and cranberries
It’s important to know which plant-based foods are appropriate for dogs as some can be toxic and harmful. Toxic or harmful plant-based foods include:
A BARF diet is made up of mostly raw meat. The proteins included in the BARF diet are:
- Raw eggs
- Liver meat
- Kidney meat
- High-quality muscle meat
- Raw ground bone
- Raw whole bone
- A small amount of raw fish
- Turkey meat
- Pork meat
- Beef meat
Most animal-based proteins are safe for dogs, but some dogs do have preferences that you’ll learn as you feed your dog the BARF diet. Any bones given to dogs should always be whole or ground bones and should never be cooked. Ground bones are typically easier on a dog’s digestive system.
Do Vets Recommend a BARF Diet?
Research has shown that feeding a dog a raw diet can be exceptionally beneficial to a dog's overall health. Studies found that dogs fed a raw food diet instead of traditional dog food are less prone to disease. Professional veterinarians have also indicated that when dogs are fed raw food, their lifespan can increase by 25%.
The BARF diet is a healthy and safe raw food option for your canine friend. Make sure to transition slowly and pay close attention to the amounts of each kind of raw food you’re giving your dog. K9 Kravings food products are a great addition to your dog's BARF diet.
Learn more about K9 Kravings for the BARF diet and its benefits to your dog's health.