Interview with Lindsay Rubin, VP of Vegan Dog Food Brand v-dog

Lindsay Rubin VP of v-dog

V-dog is an international dog food brand based in San Francisco, and they are the first and only all-vegan (plant-based) dog food brand in the United States. Here we talk to Lindsay Rubin, VP of v-dog, about the benefits of a vegan diet for your beloved pet.

What are the ways a vegan diet can benefit a dog?

After evolving alongside humans for thousands of years, dogs are omnivores (I don’t think there’s such thing as facultative omnivores), which means they can digest and thrive on starchy foods, unlike their wolf-like ancestors. Dogs can benefit from a vegan diet just like humans can. Over the last fourteen years, we’ve seen dogs experience fewer allergy symptoms and itching, improved weight maintenance, better joint health and better bowel movements, among many other benefits, after switching to a complete and balanced vegan diet.

While meat may be a great source of protein, it’s also a source of fat. That’s no problem for wolves who walk as much as 100 miles a day in search of a meal, but for domestic dogs who get a fraction of that exercise, meat-based diets often lead to canine obesity and other health problems.

How long have vegan diets for dogs been on the market?  Is there any research showing benefits?

V-dog launched in 2005 and we have since seen thousands of doggy customers thrive on our formula. There is research and evidence that shows dogs thrive on a complete and balanced vegan diet, and we are working on v-dog-specific research this year. V-dog partners with a team of veterinarians who endorse a plant-based diet for the health and longevity of dogs. Here are a couple of notable links on the topic:
Vegetarian versus Meat-Based Diets for Companion Animals
Vegetarian canine diets

Are there dog breeds that do better than others on a vegan diet? Do certain dog breeds like Huskies and German Shepherds that are more “wolf like” require meat more than other dog breeds?

We’ve seen dogs of all shapes, sizes, and breeds thrive on v-dog. Even breeds that could be considered more “wolf like” meet all of their nutritional requirements on a complete and balanced vegan diet. In fact, one study about the health and longevity of dogs specifically focused on huskies: An experimental meat-free diet maintained hematological characteristics in sprint-racing sled dogs.

How can a vegan diet help dogs suffering from allergies?

According to a recent study on food-related allergies in dogs, the top culprits of allergy-related issues are beef, dairy, and chicken, among other animal products. If your dog is itchy or having digestive issues, switching to a plant-based diet is an excellent option to help them find relief.

Do dogs need at least some meat to thrive? Is it best to alternate meals – eating vegan for one meal and non-vegan for another?

Dogs can be completely healthy on a plant-based diet as long as their food is complete and balanced. Since dogs are omnivorous, like humans, they do not need any meat in order to live a completely healthy, long life. We’ve experienced incredible results in thousands of dogs since 2005 who thrive exclusively on v-dog!

Do dogs live a longer life on a vegan diet?

Bramble, the vegan Border Collie in the UK lived to just over 25 years old and is known as one of the world’s oldest dogs. A vegan diet has been shown to improve health and enhance longevity in dogs. We have an entire section on our website dedicated to senior dogs and their stories of alleviated joint pain, allergies and weight issues.

What is causing all the chronic diseases in modern-day dogs? (cancer, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, allergies and kidney failure)?

Experts believe that the increase in incidences of cancers, kidney failure, and other degenerative diseases in dogs are largely due to harmful ingredients in many commercial meat-based foods, including the lack of regulation of meat in the pet food industry (google “4D meats”). Also, obesity and inflammation can reduce a dog’s lifespan by compromising hip and back health. A vegan diet has shown to help dogs maintain a healthy weight and reduce inflammation in their body.

How can the diet help lower your pet’s carbon footprints?

Animal agriculture is extremely carbon-intensive, even more so than all transportation combined. According to a recent study, our companion animals rank very high on global meat consumption. Just like a human choosing a vegan lifestyle, a dog can significantly reduce their carbon pawprint by going vegan!

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