Most people consider pet dogs as part of their family, and they want to make sure that their pet canine has a clean bill of health. But they need to make sure their pet dog has a balanced diet, and many pet owners often don’t know how to provide this. Most experts consider protein as the most important nutrient that should be added to your dog’s diet. But if your dog is suffering from a chronic condition, a low-protein diet may be your best option. These are the times when protein is dangerous to the health of your canine friend, so you should visit your vet and ask if a low-protein diet for dogs can help.
What is a Low-protein Diet?
The Association of American Feed Control Officials or AAFCO defines a low-protein diet as consisting of the minimum protein content of 18 percent on a dry matter basis. Water dilutes protein content of the dog’s food, so essentially a cup of dry food is much higher than a bowl of wet food. Water should not be included in your diet assessment. Most of the commercially available dog foods consist of 25 percent protein content. The good news is that there are specialty stores that offer low-protein diet food. It is worth noting that a low-protein diet is not right for all dogs.
What Conditions Indicate a Need for Low-protein Diets?
Certain conditions indicate a need for low-protein diets. If your dog suffers from kidney or liver disease, a low-protein diet helps decrease the workload of these organs. These two organs metabolize proteins so reducing intake will ease the burden on the kidneys and the liver. In addition, low-protein diets help prevent your pet canine from losing the protein they are already taking.
But Dr. Ariel Monseco, a clinical associate professor of medicine specializing in nutrition, endocrine issues, and internal medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, reveals that dogs with low-protein diets experience some form of protein-losing nephropathy, a disease associated with progressive renal failure. According to studies, when you limit the amount of protein in the diet, you also limit the amount of protein lost by the kidneys.
Is a Low-protein Diet Right for My Dog?
A low-protein diet is never recommended without the supervision of a veterinarian. It will also have a detrimental effect if you design it yourself. They are only recommended for dogs with serious issues and making one will only make matters worse. The diet should be accompanied by proper monitoring through blood tests and must be conducted at the clinic.
If your veterinarian recommends a low-protein diet for your dog, there are some steps you need to do to make the diet successful. The first is to make sure that they only get high-quality protein. Second, you should also regularly monitor the weight and body condition of your pet dog. Make sure that they are not improperly losing or gaining weight as a result of their new diet regimen. The key to maintaining the overall health of your dog is to maintain a healthy weight as well.