Ketogenic Dog Food: How It Works, Pros & Cons + DIY Recipes

A keto diet for your dog might turn out to be a good thing if you do it correctly. Mainly, dogs do not have a biological need for carbohydrates. As such, when your dog ingests carbs, his body is metabolically working overtime to cover for being fed inappropriate food. And this stress favors the appearance of health issues like diabetes, cancer, or obesity. 

So, when your dog eats real, fresh food, his body can properly digest it. This increases your dog’s lifespan and significantly improves his health.

Are you interested in a particular topic about keto diet for dogs? Then use the table of contents below to jump to the most relevant section. And you can always go back by clicking on the black arrow in the right bottom corner of the page. Also, please note that some of the links in this article may be affiliate links. For more details, check the Disclosure section at the bottom of the page. 

What’s make dog food ketogenic?

Similar to a human diet, a ketogenic diet for dogs represents a reliable metabolic tool that can aid the body in switching from burning sugar (carbs) to burning fat. As such, it can boost the energy levels in your dog, while bettering the pup’s health.

The ketogenic diet for a dog should mostly consist of a 1:1 ratio of healthy fats. The most typical ketogenic dog food diet is the one revolving around a raw diet of meat, organs, and bones.

Keto diet for dogs: is it good?

A keto diet for your dog might turn out to be a good thing if you do it correctly. Mainly, dogs do not have a biological need for carbohydrates.

As such, when your dog ingests carbs, his body is metabolically working overtime to cover for being fed inappropriate food. And this stress favors the appearance of health issues like diabetes, cancer, or obesity. 

So, when your dog eats real, fresh food, his body can properly digest it. This increases your dog’s lifespan and significantly improves his health. 

List of keto foods for dogs

High-quality fresh protein in moderate amounts, including:

  • Various types of meats: beef, turkey, lamb, chicken, etc.
  • Different oils: coconut, hemp, flaxseed, fish, oil, etc.

How to feed a dog ketogenic diet?

A dog can reach ketosis by modifying the diet to a low carb meal plan. A keto-friendly diet shouldn’t be forced on your pup, meaning that you should allow a transition period between a few days and a couple of weeks.

You can achieve this by gradually switching to homemade foods and remove any processed food in the dog’s meal plan. Always remember these types of meals can be filled with harmful sugars and chemicals. You should never include those in a dog’s meal plan. 

The general rule says that your dog’s diet should come with any rice, pasta, bread, biscuits, or fruits. Instead, you should add much as possible of leafy vegetables, hearty proteins, or fatty fish.

The macros ratio for your dog’s meals should be 70% fat, 25% proteins, and 5% of complex carbohydrates. 

Raw ketogenic diet: Pros and cons

Pros:

  • The main advantage is that this type of diet can completely change your dog’s lifestyle. As a result, your pup will become more energic and happy. 
  • It might help dogs with cancer, but at the same time, it might prevent the development of cancerous tumors. 
  • It improves your pup’s nutritional intake, as you will feed him plenty of healthy fats and nutritious vegetables.
  • Another benefit of a ketogenic diet for your dog is that potentially it can aid in managing diabetes. Due to the low carbohydrate content, this diet might balance blood sugar levels. As a result, it might help your dog in overcoming the side effects of diabetes.
  • It might help prevent obesity in your dog, but at the same time, a ketogenic diet is an ally for weight loss. Many veterinarians recommend this diet for overweight puppies, as feeding fresh foods can aid in balancing weight. 

Cons:

  • It might be hard at first to commit your dog to a ketogenic diet. It requires a lot of discipline, and many dogs are not so open to a dietary change. Similar to humans, your dog might fancy a specific food, meaning that he might refuse to eat his new meal plan. As such, it is always best to change his diet gradually. 
  • It might be challenging to find a reliable dog food distributor that has in its product range ketogenic-friendly foods for your pet. As such, you might need to do some additional research and thoroughly read the labels.
  • Your dog might experience the keto flu. This means that during the transition period, your pup might develop flu-like symptoms linked to low carb, high-fat diets. This might make your pup sluggish, but the symptoms should disappear in a couple of days.  

Homemade keto dog food recipes

There are several homemade keto dog food recipes you can use. Even though it’s not ideal, you can always give it a try. All you have to do is mix the listed ingredients and serve the dish fresh. Some of the most popular options are:

Chicken and carrots delight

  • 35% – 50% chicken thighs or breasts
  • 10% – 30% chicken hearts and liver
  • 12% – 15% ground chicken bone
  • 5% raw or lightly boiled chicken eggs
  • 5% – 20% organic carrots
  • 5% – 20% organic green beans

Beef and greens feast

  • 35% – 50% beef – ground, cheek or stewing
  • 10% – 30% beef hearts and liver
  • 12% – 15% beef tail bones
  • 5% – 10% organic green apples
  • 5% – 10% organic collard greens
  • 5% – 20% organic kale

Turkey, Chicken, and Fish mix

  • 12% – 15% bone-in chicken and turkey (ground or whole)
  • 35% – 50% mackerel or other oily fish
  • 10% – 30% chicken and turkey hearts and liver
  • 5% lightly boiled chicken eggs
  • 5% – 10% organic spinach
  • 5% – 10% organic broccoli

Best ketogenic dog food

As mentioned above, it is rather challenging to identify trustworthy keto food for the dog’s distributor. There are several brands of dog food on the market that are claiming to deliver a proper keto recipe for your pet.

However, only one of those, Ketonatural, does the best in terms of the research and education of pet parents. They even created their own Academy with lots of free books, videos, and studies on the subject.  

Their keto-friendly pet food is named Ketona, and it is meant to make a difference in your dog’s diet. The best thing about this product range is that it has less than 5% carbohydrates in its formula. And it is a significant advantage when considering similar products on the market that come with a hidden 30 to 70 percent carbs intake. 

$9.99  in stock
1 new from $9.99
MORE REVIEWS
Amazon.com
as of May 28, 2020 12:38 pm

The founder of the company, Daniel Schulof, comprised his views in his book “Dogs, Dog Food, and Dogma.” It’s very well written and dog very well-received by dog owners (just check the reviews). And here’s a little lifehack – you can get it for free (along with other learning materials) upon joining the virtual Ketona academy here

Credits: thanks for the cover photo to Canva.

If you’ve found the information above valuable, please, share it.

Disclosure: At Doghint.com we only mention the products that we’ve researched and considered worthy. But it’s important to note that we are a participant of several affiliate programs, including VigLink, ShareASale, Skimlinks, and Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a mean for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. As an Amazon Associate Doghint.com earns from qualifying purchases.  Also, please note that Doghint.com does not intend to provide veterinary advice. All published articles are meant for informational purposes only. And this information should not be substituted for professional veterinary consultation.