In the past few days I have been asked several questions about when to use supplements. It is my belief that an animal that is fed a nutrient rich diet that is appropriate for the species is not in need of additional supplementation. For instance, our BARF World patties contain all the needed nutrients to support and maintain an adequate feeding program. So we don’t recommend adding supplements to the diet. In most cases,if supplements are given as a shotgun approach to better health, one can be doing more harm than good. In the case of our patties, we monitor and test to be sure that the required nutrients and Calcium/Phosphorus ratios are correct. Adding additional supplements could alter the ratios and in addition add additional cost to the feeding program. There are appropriate situations where we feel that additional supplements may provide added benefits. Our supplements are designed to supply added benefits to animals with conditions that warrant the addition of the supplements. I would always encourage the use of our supplements for kibble fed dogs because I feel they are deprived of adequate vitamin and mineral content. The vitamins and minerals that are added after heat processing are synthetic and as such are not as readily absorbed as natural vitamins and minerals. In addition I totally believe in the importance of the enzyme system and the effects the enzymes have on digestion. Proper regulation of the digestive enzyme system is one of the most important aspects of attaining the most nutrient utilization from the food. I will suggest supplements to animals being fed kibble, to customers that are tying to make a home-made raw meat diet recipe, to animals that have a compromised immune system (from taking antibiotics and steroids), and for digestive conditions such as diarrhea and vomiting. These are areas that need the additional help from added supplementation.
posted by Rob Mueller