BARF (Biologically Appropriate Raw Food or Bones & Raw Food) is a specialised diet that consists of feeding pets raw food, including meat, bones, fruits, vegetables & beneficial natural supplements.
There are several potential benefits of raw feeding for dogs & cats, and in this article, we break down the top 8 benefits.
If you are ready to start or transition your dog or cat to a raw diet, check out our raw feeding guide.
Ready? Let’s jump in.
The Benefits of BARF Diets
1. Retains beneficial enzymes
Similar to some human foods, the more you cook something, it removes the most natural, beneficial nutrients and enzymes that add to your overall health.
However, unlike us, pets do not have the ability to create their own good gut enzymes. They must rely on us to feed them good food that maintains those levels. Raw protein sources are the best way to ensure your pet receives the proper gut microflora.
2. No harmful preservatives
Our pets love and trust us with whatever food we put in front of them. Even kibble smells good to our pets, so they happily eat it.
While some dry kibble brands use natural preservatives made from Vitamin C or E, some may use synthetic products, which can spell bad news long term for your pet and may factor into certain skin irritations or allergies.
Some toxic preservatives have even been known to cause problems in the liver and blood and have certain cancer-causing compounds. Not all products are created equal. Choosing to feed your pet healthy whole raw barf foods as nature intended will provide your pet with the best diet.
Check out our guide on raw diets vs kibble & cooked food for more information.
3. Better overall health
Many customers of our BARF wholesalers, over the last 10+ years of looking after their pets, have reported numerous health benefits of barf diets, from starting or switching to a raw diet for their pets.
Dogs with little energy or old arthritic dogs have been reported to have a new lease on life with remarkable improvements in mobility and activity levels. Dogs suffering from skin allergies or irritations from biting & scratching have been known to have their symptoms disappear. For this reason, a fresh diet will boost their mood, diminish their stress, and sharpen their minds. As an added bonus, they’ll also love you for it!
4. Better body composition
Your pet will benefit from a leaner body mass and increased lean muscle mass, increasing the animal’s metabolic rate and energy levels.
Kittens and puppies fed raw food from the beginning almost never show problems of obesity. Generally lower in carbohydrates and higher in protein, which can help pets maintain a healthy weight and reduce the risk of obesity-related health problems.
5. Increased energy, vitality & mood
Pets on a raw BARF diet often have more energy and vitality as they receive a diet more aligned with their natural biological needs.
The natural enzymes and probiotics in raw food can help boost a pet’s immune system, making them less susceptible to infections and illnesses.
Owners have described that pets appear friendlier, more interactive, sociable, and affectionate once switched onto a raw diet. While some dogs may not show noticeable signs, many owners have noticed a calmer or livelier attitude.
6. Improved Digestion
Raw food is easier for pets to digest, which can lead to fewer digestive problems such as constipation, diarrhea, and bloating.
As pet owners, we play a significant role in shaping the microbiome of our dogs through the food we choose to feed. In their natural state, dogs are carnivorous scavengers. They have evolved over thousands of years on a diet consisting mostly of animal protein (i.e. meat and fish) and small amounts of vegetation. The benefits of barf diets and feeding them raw is a complete way to mimic their ancestral lineage and feed them the best food nature has to offer.
7. Healthier coat & teeth
Your pet will reap the benefits of barf diets from natural, beautiful clean white teeth & fewer chances of gum disease and also noticeably better breath! Which means more enjoyable kisses for you! Your dog’s teeth are a window to their health, and better oral hygiene can extend your dog’s life for up to three years.
You will also notice a shinier, softer & healthier-looking coat due to the higher proteins and concentrations of amino compounds and omegas in a raw diet.
Your pet will also be less prone to dryness, flakiness, and itching, which can cause short- and long-term discomfort and affect their quality of life.
8. Cheaper Vet Bills
Naturally, the healthier your pet, the cheaper your vet bills will be long-term. Investing in a high-quality diet for your pup may also save on long-term bills that insurance companies thrive on, like ailments that could be easily avoided due to investing in a higher-protein diet for your pet.
You may also save on other miscellaneous overhead costs, such as cortisone or medicated washes for dogs with allergies.
Give the opportunity for your pet to have a longer life expectancy and a happy, healthy outlook for life. Your effort and investment will be worth it.
We acknowledge that raw feeding continues to face adversity, but it has grown from strength to strength due to its loyal supporters, unlike other dwindling diet trends. It’s beginning to become clear to consumers who make the switch that the benefits of barf diets outweigh any downsides.
With each independent study that is funded, exciting new research is breaking ground to change the future of how we feed our pets. Allowing us to provide them with the healthiest, happiest lives imaginable and fuel them with food designed to help them thrive.
At the end of the day, It’s simple logic – if you are interested in being healthy yourself, you know that a natural diet plays (if not the most) an important role in your life & it’s just as important for your four-legged loved one. Choose to feed them the best with BARF Time.