Fasting — means your dog skips a meal!
Most of our dogs are “trained” with their internal clocks to let us know when it’s time to put food in their bowl. Predictable habits are easy for them to follow — this is a factor in how service dogs are trained to remind us to take meds for example.
So the thought of actually not feeding our dogs one of their weekly meals, puts most pet parents on edge. I mean, can we take the pouty faces and demands from our dog? Yes. Yes You can.
Here are some of the important benefits:
🐾 Metabolic Health — increases metabolic rate with intermittent fasting periods
🐾 Mimics natural order of prey-driven animals
🐾 Allow full digestion to occur and gives the digestive system a little time off the clock. It allows for breakdown- absorption and elimination of a protein-rich diet — thus supporting the kidneys
When should you fast? At least 1 time per week for at least 1 meal — maybe a full day. The best time of day would be to skip dinner so you go to bed and sleep through it. You could skip breakfast if you’re going to be out of the house for the day so you don’t have to see pouty face 🙂
If you are uncomfortable starting a fast — you could try to just give no solids foods for one meal. Meaning they get something like bone broth or some honey and yogurt.
Through the week is also a good idea to start engaging your dog in games and play that has him seeking out his meals. Tap into his nose & hunting outside — not every meal needs to be in a bowl at the scheduled feeding time. Change things up sometimes!!
Never take away water even during a fast.
(if your dog has medical issues that require medications with food, or blood sugar management — it’s import to speak with your vet and do a little more research — but for most most pets this becomes part of a good wellness program!
New studies (look them up!) are showing that when we mimic how our dog’s would eat in the “wild” with ancestral appropriate diets, they wouldn’t eat every day — and time off the clock for the digestive system can improve their health and longevity.