When you are on the keto diet or a low-carb diet, it is known to have many benefits such as promoting weight loss, helping to lower blood sugar and insulin levels, improving cognitive behavior, it also has beneficial effects on metabolic health and overall, it can make you feel better.
So, if it works on people, wouldn’t it work on our pets too? Dogs, like humans, can also be overweight, diabetic or have epilepsy, other illnesses that can be surprisingly common.
So, as the keto and low-carb diet grew in popularity for humans, it also sparked some curiosity in the pet world as well. Today more and more dog owners want to include a carb-free diet in their pets’ lives.
Should I Feed My Dog Ketogenic Food?
In the wild, predatory animals consume only 3% to 5% of carbohydrates in their daily intake, so their natural diet is low in carbs and with intermittent fasting. Dogs are classified in the order of carnivores, meaning that their primary source of food is meat.
The Veterinary Centers of America has said that dogs have adapted to an omnivorous diet and they consume both meat and plants.
The intestinal tract of a dog can produce the enzymes necessary to metabolize sugars and starches, so dogs can consume carbohydrates, but for their primary energy sources, they use mainly primary fats and proteins.
Therefore, dogs biologically do not need high amounts of carbs.
The goal for the ketogenic diet for dogs is to get as close to their natural eating diet which has high-fat content, high or medium protein content and low carb content.
This means that the keto diet will make the dogs’ body use fat and protein for energy, and not carbs which will help their overall health as well as certain targeted illnesses.
The keto diet is known for its ability to aid weight loss in humans and in dogs, but that’s not the only thing it helps with.
The keto diet has benefits in preventing or fighting against cancer, and also there is evidence that it can help with epilepsy in dogs. (*) (*)
However, in the end, it all depends on the dog. Some dogs do not do well on a high-fat diet and some do amazing.
Whenever you make an adjustment to your dogs’ diet, just make sure you monitor them closely.
How Do I Feed My Dog On A Ketogenic Diet?
If you haven’t done this before, you may have a few questions on how exactly can you do this?
Well, first things first, you need to ease into the ketogenic diet slowly and gradually.
This is so your dogs’ pancreas, liver and gallbladder don’t work into overdrive.
You should gradually transition into a high-fat diet over a period of 10-14 days to let your dogs’ body adjust properly.
If you look at a natural, historically correct evolutionary diet for dogs it might look something like this:
- protein in the 25 – 80% range
- fat in the 20 – 75% range
However, today, the recommendation of a keto diet for dogs looks more like this:
- protein at the lower end at 25%,
- fat at the high end at 70%
- carbs at a negligible 3 – 5%
But, these percentages aren’t the only way to introduce a ketogenic diet to your dog. There are also ratios of a ketogenic diet for dogs that are recommended, and if you are planning on doing this, you should understand them.
- 1:4 means 1 part protein + carbs to 4 parts fats
- 1:3 means 1 part protein + carbs 3 parts fats
- 1:2 means 1 part protein + carbs 2 parts fats
- 1:1 means 1 part protein + carbs 1 part fat
- 1:0.5 means 1 part protein + carbs ½ part fat
The 1:4 and 1:3 ratios are usually recommended for dogs that have cancer or other serious illness. The cancer cells get the energy to grow and spread from carbs so a diet with low amount of carbs can help with the management, however, it is not a “cure”, it is just something that may help.
For prevention and general well being for your pet, or just weight loss where your dog doesn’t have any major underlying illness 1:1 or 1:0.5 ratio is recommended.
To make sure that your dog is in ketosis you need to check for ketones in their urine and check the blood sugar levels. That is the only way that you’ll be sure that your dog is in ketosis.
What Is The Best Low-Carb and Keto-Friendly Dog Food Brand?
Whatever the reasons are, if you are reading this, you are probably interested in introducing low-carb and keto-friendly dog food to your pet. So, naturally, you are curious to know what is the best possible low-carb and keto-friendly food that you can give to your dog.
Most dry dog foods on the market have 46 to 74% of carbohydrates, which is way too much since they biologically do not need it.
So, what dog food has low carb content?
Ketona Keto Dog Food Review
One of the best low-carb dog foods is Ketona made by KetoNatural Pet Foods that was founded by Daniel Schulof. What makes Ketona better than other brands?
Ketona is made in Pawnee City, Nebraska, United States and with natural ingredients with added minerals and vitamins. Their ingredients are responsibly sourced from US and Canadian fishermen and ranchers.
Ketona dog food has no wheat, no corn, no rice, no potatoes, no beans, no soy, no sweet potatoes, no sorghum, no rye, as well as no artificial flavors and no coloring. It has less than 8% carbohydrates and nutritional content of a typical raw diet but the convenience and cost of a kibble.
What does Ketona offer?
The Ketona brand has 2 recipes: chicken and salmon and 1 single ingredient dog treat with chicken liver flavor made with freeze-dry chicken livers.
In both of their recipes, they have a few key ingredients, and those are chicken or salmon, ground green peas, chicken or salmon meal, sunflower oil, pea protein, oat hulls, pea fiber, gelatin, flaxseed meal, phosphoric acid, and a vitamin and mineral blend.
Ketona also has its specific percentage of nutrients and that is what makes it one-of-a-kind dog food. Here is the nutritional information of both of their flavors:
|Product||Crude Fat||Dietary Starch||Crude Fiber||Sugar||Crude Protein|
How to feed Ketona to your dog?
Feeding instructions are available on every package and on their website. Their recommendations are to feed twice a day in amounts proportional to your dogs’ weight.
|20 lbs||1.00 cups/day|
|40 lbs||1.75 cups/day|
|60 lbs||2.50 cups/day|
|80 lbs||3.00 cups/day|
|100 lbs||3.50 cups/day|
Yes, dogs can do very well on a low-carb, keto diet. Their bodies don’t use carbs as their main source of energy and they do not need them to function well.
Ketona dog food contains less than 8% carbohydrates?
They have 2 flavors of dry dog food- chicken and salmon flavor. They also have chicken liver flavored single ingredient dog treats.
The keto diet for dogs has many benefits in fighting illnesses like cancer, obesity, diabetes and other metabolic diseases and it can even help your dogs’ overall health.
Whether your dog has an underlying illness or not, the ketogenic diet is worth trying. The high-fat and high to mid protein and low-carb diet is close to their natural diet- as Mother Nature intended.
And Ketona is something that can make the keto journey for you easier and for your pet tastier.