Pet Nutritionist Approved
Dr. Susan Lauten, PhD, is a renowned pet nutritionist and author of the book Back to Basics: Whole Food for Healthy Dogs. She received her Master’s in Animal Nutrition followed by her PhD in Biomedical Sciences. While at the University of Tennessee, College of Veterinary Medicine, she started offering clinical nutritional services and eventually left to pursue this area of service on her own. In 2015, Dr. Lauten was approached by Martina Schumann to review and refine The Healthy Barker’s meals to make sure that they’re balanced and complete.
Ask the Expert:
How is The Healthy Barker different from commercial dog food?
Commercial foods are made up of feed grade materials, containing a lot of cereal grains and less whole meats. The Healthy Barker is made up of human grade foods, fit for human consumption. The Healthy Barker foods are grain free, fresh and whole. No by-products of discarded foods are included. These are called "fillers" and include things like corn gluten meal, dried beet pulp, powdered cellulose, soybean mill run, dextrose, modified rice starch, etc., to name a few. Our dog food is also free of hormones and preservatives.
Do I need to transition my dog over to The Healthy Barker foods?
Always transition your dog to new foods over a period of at least 7 days. If your dog has a sensitive stomach, you can stretch the transition over to 2 weeks. The traditional recommendation is:
How do you ensure the meals are complete, balanced and contain the proper vitamins and nutrients?
Sophisticated human software that utilizes the USDA database of foods has been modified to contain the nutritional needs of dogs and cats. Recipes are created using the Association of American Feed Control Officials requirements and nutritional software to assure that feeds are complete and balanced.
How does a poor diet impact my dog’s health?
Poor quality foods will contain vitamins minerals and nutrients just like high quality foods, but those nutrients may not be as bioavailable as they need to be. That means if the quality is not present, then it may not be possible to digest and absorb the nutrients in the food. Some nutrients compete with each other for absorption, so too much of some things will interfere with others. Some fillers just take up space in the food leaving the healthy nutrients to compete for exposure to digestive enzymes.