is traditionally followed in India and most of the Asian countries. In western countries also vegetarianism or vegans are increasing.In the United Kingdom now there are 5,40,000 people who are vegan or do not eat any animal products including milk, cheese and honey. Therefore pet owners are feeling a need to make their pet a vegetarian. Some pet owners mostly in India while in a rush to make their pets a vegetarian making their pet sick. The author in his clinic has seen many cases of food allergies just because of feeding a vegetarian diet. Some pet faced an untimely death just because they could not adapt to a vegetarian diet.
This does not mean that you cannot make your pet a vegetarian. A dog can be converted to a vegetarian. A cat, on the other hand, is difficult to make a vegetarian.
Things to consider
- Eggs should be given to a dog on a vegetarian diet.
- It is a better idea to feed a commercial vegetarian diet than to give a homemade vegetarian diet. This is because the commercial diet is more balanced.
- The digestive tract of dogs is short, so dogs cannot digest green leafy vegetables. This is why when a carrot is fed to a dog it comes out as it is.
- The dog’s jaw, teeth and short gut is made to eat meat and not vegetables or grain. Therefore, The process of converting to a vegetarian diet should be slow.
- A vegetarian diet should not feed to puppies or dogs less than one year old. Dogs should be given a meaty diet or commercially available good quality diet for the entire growing period.
- Care should be taken to convert them to a vegetarian diet. If any adverse reaction or food allergy is observed, they should be turned back to normal dog food.
Steps to convert a dog to veggie
- At first homemade vegetarian meal should be given once a week.
- Vitamins and amino acid should be supplemented to a dog on a vegetarian diet.
- Milk products such as cheese, yoghurt may be tried.
- boiled vegetable mixed with cooked rice may be fed. Some vegetables such as onion, garlic, mushrooms should not be given to dogs.
- A mixture of cut seasonal fruits may be fed. keep in mind grapes are forbidden for dogs.
Small animal veterinarian for last 20 years. works in self-owned pet clinic in Ranchi, India called Pluto Pet Clinic. Published several articles on pets and social media in various national and international pet magazines, blogs. Part of many international organisations including Nabuur, Mission Rabies, Asian Society of small animal dermatology, WSAVA.