Hello Wholefoods: The Science Behind Wholefoods In A Pet Diet

We believe in science which is why we based our products around evidence-based research. Having a diet rich in wholefoods is essential for maintaining the health of your pup. It can make all the difference to your dog's digestion. 

We’re here to educate you WHY - with the evidence, of course. 

[2] Effects of phytates on mineral bioavailability.


The issue with supermarket kibble.

Firstly, let's discuss who the AAFCO is. AAFCO is the Association of American Feed Control Officials. And while this body is based in the US, many Australian pet food manufacturers follow these guidelines, which is outlined in the Australian Standard for the Manufacturing and Marketing of Pet Food. ‘Complete and balanced’ is one of the guidelines that is a must for pet food to be passed legally. And while this sounds great… it does not guarantee nutritional sufficiency. Many, many supermarket pet foods have been found to contain high amounts of mycotoxins and euthanasia drugs which can cause serious health issies and sometimes death [1]. Supermarket kibble and canned pet foods often have high amounts of phytic acid or phytates which is often found in legumes, grains etc. a lot of the time, these brands will add synthetic materials to make up for the lost nutrition (refer to image) Which makes us question, why not just feed your pet the nutrition they naturally need?  

[2] Effects of phytates on mineral bioavailability. 

What are wholefoods in a pet diet?

Wholefoods in pet food is essentially the use of whole ingredients in their raw and natural state. Making this easier for your pup to digest and receive the required nutrients. Through a wholefood diet, your pet will intake a wide variety of enzymes, vitamins and minerals while absorption of these nutrients is a lot easier for them. This is due to the bioavailability of these ingredients [3]


According to futureyouhealth.com “a measure of how much a substance is able to access the circulation and reach the target area, and it depends on absorption (how much we get it) and secretion (how much we get out).” [4]

Bioavailability is due to an array of different mechanisms including; 

  • Particle size - smaller = better
  • Nutrient interactions and how that affects absorption of other nutrients. 
  • Synthetic materials being completely different in structure compared to their natural whole version 
  • How different synthetic nutrients are compared to natural compounds.

In terms of bioavailability with meats, raw meat has been shown to be the most bioavailable option compared to boiling methods. This is due to heat breaking down the amino acids within the meats, and therefore minimising bioavailability or completely destroying it all together [5].  

So in terms of bioavailability, raw or wholefoods is best!

Synthetic vitamins vs wholefoods:

There have been several studies released that confirm that natural derivatives foods are less toxic, and far more absorbable while lasting longer within the body compared to synthetic. It has also been shown that a diet rich in antioxidants can reduce your pets risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease [6]

As mentioned, the additive of synthetic vitamins into commercial pet foods is due to the under compensation of nutrients in the product as a whole. However, an increase in metabolic stress is then placed on your pet leading to a compromised malnutrition of tissues and this can actually have psychological effects on your pet [7]

So when reaching for the commercial kibble at your local supermarket next, stop and assess what is going to be the best option for your pet.

Our recommendation:

PREMIUM Air-Dried | Raw TURKEY Food for Dogs (BARF: Complete & Nutritionally Balanced) - Turkey is a lean, white meat that helps dogs to build muscle and is a highly digestible protein source.  A good source of riboflavin and phosphorus, these vitamins are responsible for fats and carbohydrates being metabolized into energy. Most importantly, we DON'T include fillers, such as rice, wheat, corn, soy or artificial volumisers. 

PREMIUM Air-Dried | Raw CHICKEN Food for Dogs (BARF: Complete & Nutritionally Balanced) - Contains Omega 6 & 3 fatty acids from sunflower and flaxseed to promote coat and skin health, power veggies such as Pumpkin, Kale, Parsley & Blueberries; rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, good source of fibre and of course, single protein; no fillers!


Ref [1] [2] [3]: 

Cooke, N. What does all of this mean for raw food feeding?. https://www.bigdogpetfoods.com/guides/complete-and-balanced-raw-feeding 

Ref [4]:

Future You Cambridge (n.a). What is bioavailability? https://futureyouhealth.com/about-bioavailability 

Ref [5] [6]:

Houston, D. Bioavailability and Nutrition. https://www.bigdogpetfoods.com/guides/bioavailability-and-nutrition 

Ref [7]:

Foods, P. The Benefits of Whole Food Nutrition in Veterinary Medicine. https://my.standardprocess.com/Products/Literature/The-Benefits-of-Whole-Food-Nutrition-in-Veterinary-Medicine

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