Are dogs carnivores or omnivores?

 In Novosti

Lately, it can often be heard that dogs are omnivores, but they are actually carnivores. The fact that they can survive on a diet of foods rich in carbohydrates does not mean that this is the optimal diet for them.

You can see that a dog is a carnivore as soon as you look into its mouth. Dogs have a typical carnivorous set of teeth, strong canines and sharp molars. Omnivores also have strong canines, but the surface of the molars is much flatter, which allows food to be chewed. Omnivores can move their jaws left to right to chew food. Carnivores (including dogs) cannot move their jaws sideways, they do not chew. Their teeth only allow them to tear pieces of food and swallow them. A very acidic pH in the dog’s stomach allows for excellent digestion of raw food, cartilage and bones. Such an extremely acidic pH also protects the dog’s GI tract from microorganisms that the dog could potentially ingest with food.

The intestines of carnivores are much shorter than the intestines of omnivores and herbivores. Why is this important? Because the decomposition of complex plant structures occurs in the intestines, with the help of the microflora that lives there. No mammal can digest complex plant structures with its own enzymes, the intestinal microflora helps with that.

Dogs cannot digest vegetable matter well due to having a short digestive tract.

The fact that a plant is rich in protein does not mean that the dog will be able to process these proteins because they are completely indigestible to it.

On the other hand, simple plant starch will be easily absorbed into the body. Such easily digestible carbohydrates are bad for the carnivorous digestive system, which results in obesity and diabetes. Dogs can digest vegetable matter a bit better than wolves, but they cannot digest it as well as omnivores.

Surprisingly, today everyone agrees that the cat is a real carnivore, and at the same time cat food contains substantial amounts of corn, peas, rice, vegetable fats, etc., which the cat cannot digest at all. The small amount of vegetable matter (selected fruits and vegetables) that carnivores should eat is a source of micronutrients important for the proper functioning of the organism.

The carnivorous organism should draw energy and nutrients from foods of animal origin (proteins and fats of animal origin). Vegetable matter is not a form of protein and fat that a dog can digest. What dogs can use from plants are easily digestible carbohydrates, which do them more harm than good.

The best proof that dogs digest raw food really well (meat, offal, cartilage, bones) is the stool, which is small and firm in dogs fed raw meat. In dogs fed with carbohydrate-based foods, the stool is much larger and softer. A large amount of stool indicates that the food ingested is poorly digested or not at all.

Petra Galetić,


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