Can dogs and cats be Vegan?

What to feed and What NOT to feed? This is a confusing topic, but there are some things I am clear about…

Adding in additional supplements to support your dog/cat’s joint health, skin health, gut health and immune system is an EASY way to ensure they are getting additional nutrients to keep them healthy.

You can purchase individual supplements, or you can give one which combines ingredients to do this all for you:

Go here to see what Dr Jones’ Ultimate Canine and Feline can do for your pets!

This published survey/study has me pondering… perhaps I am wrong?

Vegan diets for dogs may be linked with better health, and could be less hazardous, than meat-based diets: Survey findings may support nutritionally complete vegan dog diets over raw or conventional meat diets


A survey study of the guardians of more than 2, 500 dogs explored links between dog diet and health outcomes, suggesting that nutritionally sound vegan diets may be healthier and less hazardous than conventional or raw meat-based diets. Andrew Knight of the University of Winchester, U.K., and colleagues present these findings in the open-access journal PLOS ONE on April 13, 2022.

Many factors may influence dog guardians to choose unconventional diets for their pets, including concerns regarding the environment, the treatment of animals used as food, and the health of their pets. However, research into the health effects of conventional versus unconventional dog diets has been limited.

To help clarify the potential health effects of different dog diets, Knight and colleagues analyzed survey data from guardians of 2, 536 dogs fed either a conventional meat, raw meat, or vegan diet. The survey included questions about the dogs’ health, including the number of veterinary visits, use of medications, and specific dog health disorders.

Statistical analysis of the survey results suggested that, overall, dogs on conventional diets were less healthy than dogs on raw meat or vegan diets. Dogs on raw meat diets appeared to be healthier than those on vegan diets.

However, the researchers noted several factors that prevent a conclusion that raw meat diets are healthier.

For one, in the study, dogs on raw meat diets were significantly younger than dogs on vegan diets, which could help explain why they appeared to be healthier.

Additionally, dogs on raw meat diets were less likely to be taken to a veterinarian; while this could be a sign of better health, prior research has indicated that guardians of dogs on raw meat diets are less likely to seek veterinary advice.

Further research is needed to confirm whether a raw meat or a vegan diet is associated with better dog health outcomes. The researchers suggest that large-scale, cross-sectional, and longitudinal studies of dogs, maintained on different diets, which utilizes data such as results of veterinary clinical examinations and veterinary medical histories, could yield results of greater reliability.

Still, prior research has linked raw meat diets to increased risk of pathogens and nutritional deficiencies. In light of both the new and prior findings, the researchers suggest that a nutritionally sound vegan diet may in fact be the healthiest and least hazardous choice for dogs.

The authors add: “We believe our study of 2, 536 dogs is by far the largest study published to date, exploring health outcomes of dogs fed vegan and meat-based diets. It analyzed a range of objective data, as well as owner opinions and reported veterinary assessments of health. It revealed that the heathiest and least hazardous dietary choices for dogs, are nutritionally sound vegan diets.”

Source: PLOS. “Vegan diets for dogs may be linked with better health, and could be less hazardous, than meat-based diets: Survey findings may support nutritionally complete vegan dog diets over raw or conventional meat diets.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 April 2022.

Best Wishes,

Dr Andrew

P.S. Before we all toss the beef, let’s look at this statement…

‘… .overall, dogs on conventional diets were less healthy than dogs on raw meat or vegan diets. Dogs on raw meat diets appeared to be healthier than those on vegan diets. ‘

Dogs on RAW MEAT diets appeared to be healthier!

If you can feed your dog animal protein/raw/homemade, my opinion is this is BEST.

But we have rising food costs, people having difficulty feeding themselves… it may be that for many people, a vegan dog food may be a legitimate option, and it may be OK- if not ideal.

Our world is changing- if there is one thing I consistently say it is to be open to doing things differently, and this may now be how are dogs are fed.

Cats NEED animal protein to survive, so don’t be showing me Vegan Cat Food though 🙂

And for Now I am sticking with Meat for Tula.

P.P.S. If you add this, your dog/cat WILL be healthier (no controversy here…)

Dr Jones’ ULTIMATE Canine and Feline Health Formulas

2 thoughts on “Can dogs and cats be Vegan?”

  1. Ever since I was rescued my dog when he took a drink of water he kind of gasps. And now it’s constantly almost I think he’s going to collapsed trachea. Is there anything that can help this?

    1. We do have related article for that:

      What is a collapsed trachea?

      The trachea, also known as the windpipe, is an important structure, which connects the throat to the lungs. It serves the purpose of directing air into the respiratory tract.

      The normal trachea is tubular. It maintains its shape because of a series of rings made of cartilage. These rings do not completely encircle the trachea. Instead, they go from the 2 o’clock to 10 o’clock positions. The remainder of the trachea is composed of a flexible membrane that joins the ends of the cartilage rings.

      When the cartilage rings are flattened from the top to the bottom, the trachea is said to be collapsed. Rapid inhalation of air can cause the trachea to flatten and make it difficult for air to enter the lungs.

      Why does it happen?

      We do not completely understand how this condition develops. However, we know that these dogs have an abnormality in the chemical makeup of their tracheal rings. The rings lose their stiffness so they are not able to retain their circular shape. We also know that it occurs in certain breeds of dogs, notably Chihuahuas, Pomeranians, Shih Tzus, Lhasa Apsos, Toy Poodles, and Yorkshire Terriers. Because of that, we suspect that there is a genetic factor involved.

      What are the clinical signs?

      The most common clinical sign is a chronic cough. It is often described as dry and harsh and can become quite pronounced. The term “goose honk” is often used to describe it. Coughing is often worse in the daytime and much less at night. The cough may also begin due to excitement, pressure on the trachea (from a leash), or from drinking water or eating.

      How is a collapsed trachea diagnosed?

      A dog of the breeds listed above with a chronic cough, especially a “goose honk,” should be suspected as having collapsed trachea. Many times, very light pressure placed on the trachea during the physical examination can raise a suspicion of collapsed trachea in a small dog with a persistent dry cough. While the information gained from the physical examination is helpful, other tests are needed to confirm this condition.

      Radiographs (x-rays) of the chest can identify the trachea and its shape. However, a collapsed trachea changes its diameter during the respiratory cycle. It is usually collapsed during inhalation and normal during exhalation. Therefore, we attempt to make radiographs during both phases of respiration. This is easy in some dogs and rather difficult in others since dogs are not likely to understand the command, “Take a deep breath and hold it.”

      Endoscopy is another way to visualize the trachea. An endoscope is a tube that is small enough to insert into the trachea; the operator can see through it and visualize the inside of the trachea. By watching the trachea during inspiration and expiration, abnormal collapsing can be seen. Unfortunately, tracheal endoscopes are expensive and not available at every veterinary hospital.

      Isn’t coughing also a sign of heart failure?

      Yes, it is. Many dogs with collapsed trachea will also have heart disease. Testing that occurs when diagnosing this disease should include chest radiographs (x-rays) so the heart can be evaluated. Treatment for heart disease is not indicated unless it can be demonstrated with some form of testing.

      How is it treated?

      Collapsed trachea can be treated medically or surgically. Some dogs respond well to brochodilators and various types of anti-inflammatory drugs. The trachea of these dogs is easily infected, so antibiotics are usually part of the treatment. If obesity is present, weight loss is often beneficial. Excitement and vigorous exercise are likely to cause a relapse, so they should be avoided as much as possible.

      Some dogs respond well to the medical approach, and others do not. Because medical therapy only treats the symptoms and does not correct the problem, these dogs are always subject to recurrences of coughing and breathing difficulty.

      If medical therapy is not successful, the dog should be evaluated for possible surgery. Radiographs and endoscopy are used to determine how much of the trachea is collapsed. If the only abnormal part is that segment between the throat and the point where the trachea enters the chest (the thoracic inlet), surgery may be curative. However, if the segment of the trachea that is within the chest cavity is abnormal, surgery is not likely to be helpful because that part is not accessible to the surgeon.

      There are several surgical approaches that have been used. Each approach implants an artificial support device that is secured around or within the trachea. The purpose of the support device is to hold the tracheal rings in their normal, open position. Although some dogs have excellent results and are truly cured of the disease, the outcome is not uniformly successful.

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