Interpretive Summary: Apparent total tract macronutrient digestibility of mildly cooked human-grade vegan dog foods and their effects on the blood metabolites and fecal characteristics, microbiota, and metabolites of adult dogs
By: Leah J Roberts, Patricia M Oba, Kelly S Swanson
Vegan, mildly cooked, and human-grade dog foods are increasing in popularity, but few studies have been performed to examine their performance. Our objective was to determine the apparent total tract digestibility (ATTD) of mildly cooked human-grade vegan dog foods and their effects on blood metabolites and fecal microbiota, characteristics, and metabolites of dogs. Two mildly cooked human-grade vegan dog diets and a chicken-based extruded dog diet were tested using 12 healthy adult dogs in a replicated 3 × 3 Latin Square design. All diets were highly digestible, with all macronutrients having digestibility values >80%. Vegan diets had higher ATTD of fat, but lower ATTD of organic matter than the extruded diet. Dogs consuming vegan diets had lower circulating cholesterol, triglycerides, platelets, and neutrophils than dogs consuming the extruded diet. Dogs consuming vegan diets had lower fecal dry matter percentages and phenol and indole concentrations, and higher fecal short-chain fatty acid concentrations than those consuming the extruded diet. Finally, ~20 bacterial genera were altered between dogs consuming vegan and extruded diets. In conclusion, the mildly cooked human-grade vegan dog foods tested performed well, resulting in desirable fecal characteristics, high ATTD, adequate serum chemistries, positive changes to serum lipids and fecal metabolites, and interesting changes to fecal microbiota.
Read the full article in the Journal of Animal Science.