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Natural Awakenings Hudson County NJ

How Pets Benefit from a Raw Food Diet

Mar 04, 2022 12:58PM ● By Jorelle Baker
Apples and carrots next to a bowl of raw dog food

For pets as well as people, a healthy, balanced diet can make all the difference between living a long life or struggling at middle age to combat chronic disease. Here’s why raw food is the ideal diet for dogs and cats.

1. Better hydration: A raw food diet consists of fresh meat, vegetables and fruits, all of which contain more moisture than dry food. High-moisture food improves skin and coat health, maintains muscle and joint health, and keeps a pet better hydrated. This is especially beneficial for domestic cats, which often don’t drink enough water throughout the day.

2. Cleaner teeth: Although dry food is often marketed as promoting dental health, it actually sticks to the teeth, causing plaque and tartar buildup over time. Raw food’s high moisture content allows it to slide off the teeth. As a result, the pet’s teeth stay cleaner longer and their breath isn’t as stinky.

3. Weight management: Raw food, like meat, can’t be left unrefrigerated indefinitely. With scheduled feedings, owners can quantify their pets’ caloric intake and better manage their weight.

4. Better ingredients: High-quality ingredients provide more nutrition with each meal. Pets’ bodies were not designed to digest artificial ingredients; they struggle to break them down, eventually leading to chronic disease by middle age. Better ingredients keep pets healthier longer. In fact, some ingredients can combat chronic disease. For example, shiitake mushrooms reduce the risk of cancer and food allergies.

5. Less waste: When a dog or cat eats food with natural ingredients, they absorb more of their meal, which means less waste. Dry food has a lot of excess components, but raw food is more easily absorbed into the system. This means smaller or fewer poops on walks or in the litter box.

6. Natural design: Raw pet food is made with fresh meat consisting of several organs and muscle, as well as vegetables and fruit—mimicking what our dogs’ and cats’ ancestors used to eat in the wild. Unlike humans, dogs’ and cats’ digestive systems haven’t changed to handle artificial ingredients. Raw food is what their bodies were designed to eat.

7. Creative feedings: Pet owners can get more creative with raw food than with dry food. Sure, dry food can be soaked in water or broken down into smaller pieces, but it remains essentially the same. With some creative thinking, raw food can be turned into a tasty ice pop on a hot summer day, or a lovely chilled soup for pets who like to drink their meals.

Jorelle Baker is the social media manager, content creator and webmaster for Holistic Pet Care, located at 125 Paterson Ave., Little Falls, NJ. For appointments or information, visit

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