Raw vs. Cooked: Debunking Common Myths About Dog Nutrition


Dogs are a beloved part of many families, and as pet owners, we want to make sure we are providing them with the best nutrition possible. One topic that often sparks debate is whether raw or cooked food is better for dogs. There are many myths and misconceptions surrounding this issue, so let’s take a closer look at the facts.

Myth: Raw food is always better for dogs

One common myth is that raw food is always superior to cooked food for dogs. While it is true that raw food can provide some benefits, such as increased nutrient absorption and improved digestion, there are also risks associated with feeding raw food to dogs. Raw meat can contain harmful bacteria such as salmonella and E. coli, which can make your dog sick.

Myth: Cooked food lacks nutrients

Another myth is that cooked food lacks the necessary nutrients for dogs. While cooking can destroy some nutrients, it can also enhance the bioavailability of others. For example, cooking can make certain nutrients, such as protein and fat, more digestible for dogs. Additionally, cooking can help to break down tough fibers in food, making it easier for dogs to digest.

Myth: Raw food is more natural

Some people believe that raw food is more natural for dogs because it mimics the diet of their wild ancestors. While it’s true that dogs are biologically omnivores and can benefit from a diet that includes raw meat, fruits, and vegetables, it’s important to remember that domestic dogs have evolved to have different nutritional needs than their wild counterparts. Cooked food can still provide dogs with the nutrients they need to thrive.

Myth: Cooking destroys enzymes

Enzymes are important for digestion and nutrient absorption, so some people argue that cooking destroys these enzymes, making it harder for dogs to digest their food. While it’s true that some enzymes are destroyed during the cooking process, dogs are equipped with their own digestive enzymes that help break down food. Additionally, certain enzymes can survive the cooking process, especially when food is cooked at lower temperatures.


In conclusion, the debate between raw and cooked food for dogs is not a clear-cut issue. Both raw and cooked food can provide dogs with the nutrients they need to thrive, but each comes with its own set of benefits and risks. It’s important for pet owners to research and consult with veterinarians to determine the best diet for their individual dog. Ultimately, the most important thing is to provide your dog with a balanced diet that meets their nutritional needs and keeps them healthy and happy.


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