It's time to talk about giving your dog a vegetarian dog treat...

This article will help you decide whether or not feeding your dog a vegetarian dog treat would be beneficial to your furry friend!

Dog nutrition is of paramount importance when considering if you should buy a dog at all, as they can be difficult to care for. Their organ systems are potentially fragile, and should be supplemented with just the right amounts of minerals and vitamins. Their coats are prone to damage and should be kept shiny at all times, through a mixture of habitual brushing and proper nutrition. Like humans, their teeth have to be brushed, claws have to be clipped, and hair has to be trimmed.

Dogs also have to be given treats and rewards, much like their human owners. Dog treats give dogs an energy boost in the middle of the day. Such treats also make dogs feel special, and give them a sense of being wanted, and belonging to a family. Dog treats, therefore, should be both a pastime for dogs, as well as nutritious.

What dog treats are available?
Dog treats are designed to not only allow dogs to chew their frustrations and boredom away, but to also clean dogs' teeth and provide them nutrition. Bones and chews are given to dogs to freshen their breath, and clean their incisors free from dangerous tartar that could lead to bleeding gums. Treats also allow them some playtime with their rubber-consistency chews for company. Cookies given them their energy boost as snacks. Energy bars could provide them antioxidants to cleanse their bodies.

Did you know that there are vegetarian dog treats available, and they can be great for your dog too?
Vegetarian dog owners often find it difficult to feed their dogs meat, and vegetarian dog treats solve this dilemma, by providing all dogs with nutrition, whether their owners are meat eaters or not.

But will dogs like vegetarian treats, you ask, if they are meat eaters by instinct?
According to research, dogs are not actually meat eaters, but simply hunters. Studies have shown that when a pack of wild dogs bring down their pray, the leaders of the pack, which are the first to partake of the feast, will go for the stomach first, the place where all food, vegetable, animal, or mineral, are stored. A dog's body system is designed and adapted to break down proteins, and using these proteins to provide the body its energy needs. This does not mean, however, that dogs do not eat or need vegetables.

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Most dog food producers manufacture meat protein diets, but with the advent of rapidly aging dogs and overweight pets, most producers are now turning to vegetarian diets and providing an alternative to the protein-rich foods that dogs were once fed. To supplement dogs with protein, legumes such as lentils and soybeans are added to vegetarian dog food, making these foods complete nutritional packages.

How can vegetarian dog treats be beneficial to your dog? Can they possibly be harmful?
Take note of the following aspects of vegetarian dog treats.

Some dogs are born with allergies to foods derived from animal products. Such dogs will require proteins from plant sources such as soybeans and lentils, and vegetarian dog treats can provide them with these.

Some vegetarian dog treats were once found to contain dangerous levels of mycotoxins, deadly fungal toxins that could cause illness, and even death in both dogs and humans. These cases have prompted scientists to scrutinize and test vegetarian dog treats in greater detail, and since then, mycotoxins have no longer been found in vegetarian dog treats.

Vegetarian dog treats promise to provide proteins to all kinds of dogs, including those with allergies to animal meat-based products. Some treats, however, will require that you give your dog eggs and cheese, since the proteins provided by legumes may not be enough. Read the labels carefully if you are uncomfortable with using eggs and cheese in your animal's diet. Be warned, however, that all dogs need to supplement their vegetarian diets with more amino acids, since a vegetarian diet on its own can cause heart problems.

Puppies should not be fed vegetarian or strict vegan diets. A vegan diet is one which has absolutely no animal products, including hide and egg albumins. Puppies need calcium and amino acids, and should still be given some amount of meat, unless they are allergic to it.

All-meat diets were once the requirement for all dogs. With more research and development, however, vegetarian diets are also found to be suitable for dogs. There are now websites available for vegetarian dogs, and there are menus and recipes available if you are interested in designing your dog's diet. If you want to give your dog a vegetarian diet, then consult with your veterinarian on the proper methods to go about it. Remember that no matter what your dog's diet is, it should be well balanced, and should cater to the dog's nutritional needs.

Keep reading...

Natural Dog Treats: Mother Nature and Your Dog

The Greenies Dog Treat: Help or Hazard?

Everything You Want to Know about Gourmet Dog Treats

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