Canine hip-dysplasia is a skeletal disease, mostly blamed by heredity. However, research has shown that excess caloric intake during growth and a high calcium intake are two important nutritional factors in the development of skeletal disease. Therefore, the well-intentioned efforts of some owners to maximize the growth rate of puppies by feeding excessive amounts of a balanced diet can actually lead to orthopedic problems. Caution should be given to some breeders who recommend routine calcium supplementation for growing puppies. This practise is un-necessary and can lead to several serious health disorders. During the growth period, the bones of larger dogs are thinner and weaker than those of smaller dogs, and this may partially explain the predisposition for skeletal abnormalities amoung large and giant breeds.
Armed with this information- you can begin to understand why feeding a raw food diet can help to prevent the skeletal problems in larger breed dogs. The raw diets allow the muscle/bone development to progress at a slower rate therefore reducing the incidence of hip-dysplasia.
posted by Rob Mueller