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Grain Free Dog Food vs Regular Dog Food – Which Should I Choose for my Pet?

The journey to better health in our pets is super inclusive of the food they consume. Though we humans consume a typical type of food, feeding our pets might not be a good idea. Typically, human food involves the intake of large amounts of sodium drugs. Such a diet is too much for our pet dogs and can lead them to health issues. Therefore, it is important to feed them with the right type of diet. Good quality food made with feed-grade ingredients which fulfil their nutritional requirement should be chosen. Here comes the need for gluten free dog food and also check the benefits of grain free vs grain dog food.

What is Grain Free Dog Food?

The grain free puppy food is exclusive of grains and cereals such as rice, wheat, corn, barley, oats, rye, etc. Grains are replaced by other carbohydrate substitutes like potatoes, peas, lentils, sweet potatoes, etc. And in many cases, it is observed that FDA grain free dog food tends to be equal or even higher in means of carbohydrate supply than regular grain food.

Is Grain Free Dog Food Good?

Easy to Digest

Since grain free food replaces heavy fats in a dog’s diet, it benefits its health. In addition, being a rich source of proteins, dogs easily digest grain free food. Therefore, it not just boosts up a dog’s energy but also provides health support. Other health benefits of grain free food include healthy skin, fewer bowel movements, better breath, less shedding, etc.

Reduced Allergic Symptoms

Grain free diet is often recommended to dogs with allergies. Switching to grain free food reduces allergic symptoms in many dogs, and regular use even leads to symptoms completely disappearing.

Improved Health

Grain free food mostly comprises meat, a good source of protein and animal fat. It also balances the diet by providing sufficient carbohydrates by using grain-like substitutes. This results in better health conditions in dogs incorporating the right amount of necessary nutrients.

Is grain free bad for dogs? – Know Why?


Usually, high-quality grain free dog food is quite expensive as these are costlier to make compared to grains. However, price is not always an indicator of quality, which might mislead the buyers.

Potential Cause of CDM

In most recent studies, it was revealed that grain free diet is directly linked to dog health. The study suggests that the components used as substitutes of carbohydrates in grain free dog food are a potential cause of canine dilated cardiomyopathy (CDM) in dogs. In simple words, vet recommended dog food might pose a heart attack threat to dogs.

Why Dog Food with Grain is Good?

Many pet parents might be very keen to switch to grain free dog diet. However, you must also consider the primary benefits of healthiest food for puppies before proceeding in any direction.

Balanced Diet

Including dog food with grain diet helps maintain a good balance of all necessary nutrients. In addition, since grains are a good source of carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, they add to the nutritional value of dog food.

Increased Immunity

Grains are also well known to strengthen the immune system of dogs. Also, grains commonly used in dog food are easy to digest and possess nutritional benefits.

Grain Free Vs Grain Dog Food – Which is Best?

The most visible difference between grain dog food and grain free dog food is the choice of grains included in it. Grain dog food contains whole grains such as wheat, corn, rice, barley, etc. These are a good source of essential nutrients: vitamins, minerals, iron, magnesium, carbohydrates, and fibers. Whereas diet food is exclusive of a few of these nutrients, it does not contain any of the previously mentioned grains. Rather, it has huge proportions of meat than cereals. While meat fulfils protein requirements in dog food, other nutrients such as carbohydrates and fats are incorporated by using substitute sources like potatoes, sweet potatoes, lentils and peas.

In addition, you can add fresh fruits and vegetables to grain free food to make it more nutritious and fit for dogs. In many cases, grain free dog food is recommended by many veterinarians over grain food. It is usually needed in the initial diet stages to monitor allergies and improve the allergic symptoms. Thus, a grain free diet tends to be a better choice for dogs having allergies or those more prone to allergic symptoms. However, it is also observed that only a few dog breeds are allergic to a grain diet.

Is Grain Free Dog Food Better Than Regular?

Grain-free dog food and regular food have their kinds of benefits. However, the choice entirely depends on the dog’s preference and nutritional requirement. Therefore, these breed of a dog and their dietary needs must be considered while choosing the best-suited diet. There are many assumptions about FDA grain free dog food being low in carbohydrates than regular food.

However, that’s not always the case. Some dog foods, labelled as grain free, are equivalent or even higher in carbohydrate and fat content. This generally happens due to substitute sources like potatoes and peas and can lead to weight gain and other health related problems. The best way to know the suitable diet option for a dog is to consult a veterinarian. A vet would help one compose a balanced diet and decide over better dietary components to be added to a dog’s meal.

Does Grain Free Dog Food Cause Heart Disease?

In an announcement made by The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2019, it was revealed that grain free dog food poses safety concerns on dogs. Dogs who consume food labelled as grain free are more prone to heart diseases. In addition, the substitute carbohydrate components used in grain free dog food are a potential cause of heart-related issues in dogs.

Vet recommended dog food is said to initiate dilated cardiomyopathy in dogs leading to risks of a heart attack. Dilated cardiomyopathy is a condition leading to weakness in the heart. This condition causes enlarged heart and thinning of heart muscles resulting in heart failure and even death. However, the study fails to confirm grain free dog food behind the reported heart diseases among dogs. Therefore, it is also being assumed that there exist other contributing factors than just the grain free component which might be causing such health conditions.

Should You Switch Your Dog To Or From A Grain Free Diet?

The decision to switch to grain free food or not completely rests on dogs’ individual needs. For many pet parents, grain free might seem a healthier option, but it all comes down to what’s best for pets. The most important part of choosing a right diet is to provide complete and balanced nutrition. Sometimes, a raw dog food diet can also equate to a grain free diet simply by replacing grains with healthier fillers or ingredients. Thus, before switching to best grain free dog food, consult a vet to discuss benefits and risks of the same.


Whether choosing grain free vs grain dog food, one must remember it has no significant effects on dog allergies. Though a grain free diet can be a good option, it might not necessarily be the best food for every dog. The best-suited diet is one that fulfils the specific nutritional requirement of a dog. It is more important to include all ingredients in a dog’s diet which provide right amount of nutrition in appropriate concentrations than the type of food.