All You Need to Know about a High Protein Diet
With all the different options for pet food these days, it is important to know what is good or not for your fur-baby. Today, we take a deep dive into a new fad, the “high protein” diet.
What Protein Does
Cats, dogs, humans, and, in fact, all mammals need protein, according to The U.S. National Library of Medicine. It provides the building blocks for muscle, bone and body mass, and plays an essential role in the creation of cells, and is key in healing wounds.
Pros & Cons of High-Protein Diet: The Pros
Having a high protein diet benefits your furchild in many ways.
As mentioned, protein serves as an essential ingredient for cell & muscle growth. Even during daily muscle movements, muscles build and breakdown muscle protein, that would need amino acids in protein to rebuild and fill in the gaps within and between muscle tissues. During exercises, the breakdown and recovery cycles happens at a much faster rate. Furchildren who enjoys an active lifestyle would benefit from a higher protein diet, especially for working dogs, performance dogs, or compete dogs (also cats too, if you have a working cat… or performance cat).
Weight Management (For Younger, Active Breeds!)
If you want a healthy and balanced weight for your fur child, this might concern you the most. Like humans, cats and dogs nowadays also experience the problem of obesity. Just as Whole Dog Journal says, higher protein diet which comes at the expense of higher carbohydrates and fat in the diet could be beneficial to weight loss, but be careful as protein is also an energy source and if you’re not taking your furbaby on enough walks or giving them exercise, this could quickly translate to more fat!
Pros & Cons of High-Protein Diet: The Cons
Having a high proportion of protein is not always a good idea for your pets as stated from this petMD post.
Increased Burden on the Kidneys and Livers
Harder to digest
The digestion of proteins is very time consuming. Proteins takes over three hours to break down and assimilate.
Conclusion: Who Needs More & Who Needs Less Protein
According to this article from Daily Puppy, a few types of pets do need more protein in their diet.
High protein diet is suitable for:
1. Young pups: Puppies, Kittens
2. Recovery: Pregnant & Nursing Mothers, Recently injured dogs & cats
3. Muscle Builders: Performance & Sport Dogs
Some breeds of dogs who loves to exercise and run around would definitely need a high protein diet, such as Border Collie, Shetland Sheepdog, Doberman Pinscher, German Shepherd, Beagle and Rottweiler.
When to avoid high protein:
- Dogs with kidney & liver diseases (especially diabetes).
Always remember, every individual has unique needs, consult with your vet to review your furchild's individual needs.
Feeling like a high protein diet is good for your furchild?
Here’s Editor’s choices of High Protein Diet Foods & Treats (our website has a “high protein” filter which we have already applied to each of the links below):