Ever notice how Fido or Furball sometimes munches on grass or weeds? It turns out dogs and cats like their greens just as we humans do. Though their diet should be primarily comprised of protein, pets also eat plant matter for digestive aid, nutrients and detoxification. When their body needs it, they make use of whatever’s handy (including―but not limited to―your lawn).
When it comes to feeding your dog vegetables, Dog Naturally Magazine explains it’s the chlorophyll in green vegetables that dogs really crave, as it “helps cleanse all the cells of the body, fight infection, heal wounds, build the immune system and detoxify all systems, particularly the liver and the digestive system.” Chlorophyll also acts as a natural breath freshener as it can eliminate foul odors in the mouth while helping with the digestion issues that can sometimes cause bad breath in the first place.
As for felines, chlorophyll helps with digestion and breath issues, too, but plants’ fibrous leaves can also aid in coughing up pesky hairballs. While cats can’t digest plant matter, says Animal Wellness Magazine, “they need to eat green foods because they remove waste and detoxify the colon. Leafy vegetables can also help a cat expel hairballs, either by pushing them into the digestive tract or enabling vomiting. A cat that uses greens to induce vomiting shouldn’t be stopped; occasional vomiting is perfectly normal and healthy.”
So, how should you go about feeding your cat or dog vegetables?
Are we talking about dumping a plate of veggies in front of your pet and saying, “go for it!”? No, we think not. But, the downside to Snowflake or Fifi’’s occasional grassy snack is the potential presence of fertilizers and pesticides that can be harmful to her health. A safer and more efficient way to provide your pet the vegetation he or she needs is through foods, treats, and specialty items that contain organic roughage like what we grow at Spinaca Farms.
A few of our favorite pet food products that include vegetable matter are:
This blend of 95% chicken and 5% broccoli is grain-free and protein-rich for active dogs, and can be served as a complete meal or as a topper to dry food.
With ingredients like kale, spinach, flaxseed and Greek yogurt, these Living Treats could be mistaken for human food! Indeed, Whole Life Pet Living makes a point of developing human-grade pet products with traceable ingredients. They also put a premium on freeze-drying their produce instead of cooking it for optimal nutrient retention.
This formula from Rachael Ray’s new pet food brand, Nutrish, incorporates dried beet pulp as “a wholesome fiber source that naturally provides prebiotics to help support healthy digestion.”
With US-raised chicken and beef as the main ingredient in every one of their products, FreshPet foods can be found in the refrigerator section of the grocery/pet store. Their Vital® grain-free chicken and ocean whitefish cat food includes carrots, eggs and spinach for whole nutrition.
At Spinaca Farms, we grow a massive selection of organic vegetables, and are driven by the conviction that every edible portion of the plant should be put to good use in today’s modern industrial food production system. We’re just as excited about supplying pet food and treat manufacturers with certified organic, plant-based ingredients as we are about manufacturers of healthy veggie snacks for humans. In this case, it’s all about giving pet parents more nutritious, plant-based options in the pet food aisle that will help contribute to their pet’s wellness.
Interested in boosting Fluffy and Fido’s health together? Contact us today.