Dog's Dietary Needs
Dogs are carnivores, or meat-eaters, by nature. However, they metabolize carbohydrates quite efficiently and can synthesize some essential nutrients, such as taurine, vitamin A, arachidonic acid and niacin, from eating plant matter. Most companion dogs eat dry kibble or canned commercial dog food. The protein in those foods usually comes from fresh or dried meat, poultry or fish, or their by-products. Soybeans, corn and wheat are other common protein sources. High-quality dog foods often combine proteins from both plant and animal sources. Dog food should contain a combination of ten essential amino acids, which dogs can only get from what they eat. Carbohydrates, fats, fiber, minerals and vitamins are other important components of a well-balanced canine diet.