Raw Vegan Dog Food: A Closer Look at Its Viability

Raw Vegan Dog Food: A Closer Look at Its Viability

Note to reader: Raw vegan diets (as with all raw diets) should be formulated by a certified canine or pet nutritionist. Ingredients and preparation methods should be followed closely.

As more health-conscious individuals prioritise their pets' well-being, unprocessed raw dog food diets are experiencing a surge in popularity. The term 'raw' encompasses various types of food, from sourcing meat directly from butchers and crafting homemade meals to purchasing pre-made and pre-packaged raw food options.

However, questions arise regarding the suitability of waste meat for dogs and the challenges faced by those dogs with intolerances to animal proteins. For vegan dog owners seeking a more sustainable and compassionate choice, the availability of raw vegan dog food seems like a positive solution. In this blog article, we delve into the concept of raw vegan dog food, exploring what it entails and how you can provide your dog with the healthiest vegan diet possible.

What is Raw Vegan Dog Food?

dog eats carrot

The term "raw" refers to uncooked food, premised on the belief that such food retains higher levels of bioavailable nutrients. Interestingly, there's currently no commercial raw vegan dog food option available for dogs. However, as a dog owner, you have the flexibility to provide your furry companion with raw ingredients, ensuring they benefit from nutrient-dense vegetables, seeds, nuts, and fruits. Achieving the ideal balance for full meals can however pose a challenge. To truly enhance your dog's health, the majority of their meals should consist of unprocessed, fresh organic fruits and vegetables. In the following sections, we'll explore various strategies to incorporate more raw vegetables into your dog's diet and even feed a raw vegan balanced meal. 

Can dogs eat raw vegan dog food?

While it's feasible for dogs to consume raw vegan dog food, there are crucial considerations to keep in mind. Due to dogs' short digestive tracts, any raw plant matter must undergo processing before feeding. This is particularly vital for legumes and seeds containing anti-nutrients, which hinder nutrient absorption. To mitigate the effects of anti-nutrients, various processing methods such as soaking, sprouting, blending, or crushing should be employed. 

With vegetables, unless your dog is good at chewing (which normally they are not), then grating or blending vegetables is the best way for them to benefit from contained pre-biotic fibres, vitamins and minerals. 

Certain vegetables, such as leafy greens, will need to be cooked in advance. There is a wealth of information in this canine nutrition course. For a comprehensive ingredient guide on plant foods, we recommend this book.

Note to reader: Raw vegan diets (as with all raw diets) should be formulated by a certified canine or pet nutritionist. Ingredients and preparation methods should be followed closely.

Sprouting seeds is good for dogs

Is raw vegan dog food healthy for dogs?

The question of whether raw vegan dog food is healthy for dogs remains largely unanswered by scientific studies; probably due to lack of funding. However, considering the nutritional benefits of organic raw plant matter, there's a compelling argument for its potential healthfulness. A diet rich in such ingredients can positively influence your dog's gut microbiome, which is crucial for their long-term well-being. While comprehensive research on the benefits of raw vegan dog food is still underway, anecdotal evidence, like Bramble's remarkable longevity on an organic whole food diet closely resembling a raw vegan diet, offers intriguing insights. Our resident 9 year old pointer, (as of Jan 2024) Fleet, is still bouncing around with life and running incredible speeds even though a pointer's average lifespan is only 12 years. Fleet has been fed an organic vegan fresh diet close a raw vegan diet for over 4 years. 

 Fleet is full of beans

Benefits of raw vegan dog food for dogs

Loaded with important bioavailable nutrients:

Fresh organic plant matter contains a range of important nutrients that may help keep your dog healthy for longer. We all know that fresh is best. 

Low in sugar

Some processed dog foods (scarily, most of the dog foods the vet will recommend!) contain sugar which is used to make it more palatable. Sugar may cause a range of health diseases including obesity, heart disease and insulin related diseases. 
Always check any labels on dog food for hidden ‘sugar’ including various sugars, sucrose, fructose, glucose. It is NOT good for your dog, and many prescription (vet) diets contain sugar. Dogs are not supposed to eat sugar. 

Healthy heart

Eating a raw, fresh unprocessed diet may help your dog have a healthy heart. Raw plant matter is full of antioxidants and is known to be anti-inflammatory. 

High in fibre

Dogs need fibre to keep a healthy digestive system. One of the reasons why there is a huge impacted anal gland problem is dogs is because they are not eating enough fresh plant matter. Fresh plant matter (called prebiotics) feed the dog’s good gut bacteria which helps with literally everything. A healthy gut will mean a healthy mind, coat, heart, balance hormones and much much more. It is imperative that we look after our dog's gut by feeding them fresh organic prebiotic fibres.

Enhanced Immunity

The abundance of antioxidants and phytonutrients found in fresh organic plants helps strengthen the immune system, reducing the risk of illness and disease.

Raw vegan dog food recipes

To ensure that you feed your dog a completely balanced diet, you will need to closely follow a diet made by a canine nutritionist - this is the same for any raw homemade diet, vegan or otherwise. You can get in touch for a bespoke recipe here or do your own research using nutrition courses such as this one for your dog. 

Fleetful offer a very close to raw vegan dog food recipe kit. It is possible to use raw ingredients with the kit by blending the vegetables in advance. Fleetful use a protein powder blend which has already destroyed the anti-nutrients in advance so mixing with water and vegetables will be adequate to feed to your dog.

All you need to do is:

  • Blend the vegetables until they are really fine
  • Add water, the protein powder in the kit and the vegetables all together and mix
  • Turn out onto a tray
  • Make the supplement topping (supplement included int he recipe kit)

Because Fleetful Recipe Kits are formulted by a canine nutritionist, you know that your dog is getting a balanced diet as well as the nutrients from raw vegetables. 

Essential Nutrients in Raw Vegan Dog Food:

There are some nutrients that are hard to find and are normally lacking in a plant-based diet for dogs. It is very important that you supplement these to ensure the long term health of your dog. Essential nutrients that are lacking in raw vegan dog food are:

  • Arginine
  • Lysine
  • Methionine
  • Tryptophan
  • Taurine
  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin D3

One of the only ways to safely ensure that your dog is getting all the nutrients that they need when they eat a raw vegan dog food diet is to supplement. Fleetful use Just Be Kind Supplement in their raw vegan dog food recipe kits. 

Transitioning Your Dog to a Raw Vegan Diet:

Transitioning your dog to a raw vegan diet requires a gradual approach. This ensures that your dog's digestive system and gut microbiome have time to adjust to the changes. Rushing the transition can lead to digestive upset, such as diarrhea, so it's essential to take it slow and monitor your dog's response closely.

A suggested timetable to transition your dog to a raw vegan diet is:

Day 1-3 80% old food, 20% raw vegan dog food

Day 3-5 50% old food, 50% raw vegan dog food

Day 5-8 20% old food, 80% raw vegan dog food

Day 8 onwards, your dog should be fully acclimatised to the raw vegan dog food. 

If by day 8 your dog’s tummy is not normal, consider a different recipe or diet for your dog. Your dog’s poos should turn out bigger and squishy (see below) and not leave a mark on the grass when you pick it up. That is the sign of a very healthy digestive system. 

 Perfect dog poo


Finding Quality Ingredients for Raw Vegan Dog Meals:

Ensuring top-quality ingredients for your dog's diet is paramount for their health and well-being. Just as we prioritise our own health, dogs also thrive on nutritious ingredients. That's why sourcing and preparing ingredients yourself is ideal. Opting for organic options whenever feasible is highly recommended, as they contain fewer pesticides and boast higher levels of essential micronutrients. If you have the opportunity to grow your own vegetables for your dog's raw vegan diet, you're providing them with the freshest and healthiest food possible. Fleetful recipe kits, designed to create vegan dog food, feature locally sourced organic ingredients whenever available, further enhancing the quality and nutritional value of your pet's meals.

Consulting with a Vet: Ensuring a Balanced Raw Vegan Diet:

Every dog is unique, and it's vital to ensure each receives the most suitable diet. Fleetful recipe kits for raw vegan dog food are ideal for dogs over 12 months old without specific dietary requirements. Formulated according to FEDIAF guidelines by veterinarians and canine nutritionists, our fresh vegan dog food offers balanced nutrition. However, if your dog has additional nutritional needs, consulting a canine nutritionist is advisable. We recommend veterinary professional Dr. Arielle Griffiths for personalised dietary advice.

While seeking guidance on your dog's diet, consulting your vet is essential. However, it's important to note that many vets lack formal training in canine nutrition. Therefore, it's advisable to find a vet with a keen interest and expertise in this area before making significant dietary changes based solely on their recommendation.

Positive Environmental Impact of Raw Vegan Dog Food.

cows and pet food

Recent news coverage has highlighted the environmental impact of dog food, sparking a growing concern about our furry companions' ecological footprint. While traditional pet food often relies on animal by-products deemed unsuitable for human consumption, many owners are increasingly hesitant to feed their pets such waste products. As a result, the demand for human-grade dog food has surged, yet this trend has huge drawbacks, with animal production and associated environmental impacts on the rise.

One of the simplest ways to mitigate your dog's carbon pawprint is by transitioning them to a vegan diet. Additionally, preparing homemade dog food using locally sourced or homegrown vegetables can significantly reduce packaging waste and further lessen the environmental impact of your pet's diet.


healthy dog on raw vegan diet

Raw vegan dog food, while a relatively new concept, can offer a highly nutritious diet for your canine companion when formulated by a qualified canine nutritionist. By incorporating the appropriate supplements alongside a raw vegan dog food diet, you can ensure that your dog receives all the essential nutrients they need. Dogs can reap the benefits of the bioavailable nutrients found in raw plant matter, promoting their overall health and well-being. Even feeding raw organic vegetables alongside other food will promote a healthy gut and enhance your dog's life and health. 

Please do leave a comment to let us know what you think about raw vegan dog food. 

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