|Another Great Article By Kristin Skelton
August 30th was National Holistic Pet Day. Holistic health care is an integrated approach that treats the “whole person”, not simply symptoms and disease. It is preventative in approach and is gaining popularity in both the human and animal spaces.
National Holistic Pet Day is a chance to think about and help improve your pet’s quality of life, addressing the lifestyle of the “whole animal” in mind, body and spirit. Today we consider the topic of nutrition.
Your floofin’s nutrition is vital to his or her overall health and wellbeing. With more pet-food options (an opinions) out there than ever before, lets take a brief look at one that’s very popular in the holistic space: raw diets.
The ASPCA does not currently condone raw feeding due to studies that indicate it can lead to nutritional imbalances as well as exposure to potentially harmful bacteria and parasites. However, advocates of raw diets proclaim better coat health, better breath, and happy, healthy pets.
Many integrative (meaning the combination of holistic/natural medicine with modern science) veterinarians, like Dr. Barbara Royal of Chicago, IL, firmly believe raw diets are simply appropriate nutrition.
Raw food can be divided into two main categories: homemade and commercial. Homemade diets are prepared by pet parents and usually include meaty bones, meat organs like liver and heart, some veggies and a bit of dairy. Commercially available raw food is often frozen and portions are thawed before being served.
In her book The Royal Treatment, A Natural Approach To Wildly Healthy Pets, an in-depth discussion on diet mentions that pre-prepared raw foods include the minerals and vitamins needed for the pet to thrive. There is more to it than just buying your pet a raw steak at the grocery store. As far as the concerns over bacteria, unlike meat sources from the grocery stores where it is expected that you will cook the meat you purchase, raw food manufactures know their food will be fed raw and take great pains to use quality ingredients and avoid pathogens during processing.
Because raw diets are a relatively new option for modern feeding, the pros-and-cons will be debated for a while. If you’re considering a raw food diet for your floofin, make sure you consult with a veterinarian, and consider buying a prepared, commercially available raw food. The Royal Treatment, A Natural Approach To Wildly Healthy Pets, provides a wealth of information if you are interested in a holistic veterinary viewpoint.