Why All Natural Dog Food May Be Best for Your Pet

October 3, 2023
Dr. Nita Vasudevan Patel, DVM, MS
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There is no single best dog food for every dog! Choosing the right option could depend on your specific pets needs and medical history and is a decision best made with the support of a nutritionist and/or your veterinarian. That said - foods that utilize more natural ingredients typically tend to be tastier and more nutritionally dense which can support a healthier, happier lifetime for you pup.

Why All Natural Dog Food May Be Best for Your Pet

As dog owners, we all want the best for them. One crucial aspect of their well-being is the food they consume. In recent years, there has been a growing trend towards all-natural dog food, and for good reason. Feeding your dog a diet consisting of natural ingredients can have numerous benefits for their overall health and happiness for the duration of their life.

In this article, we’ll cover the many benefits that come from feeding your dog a diet consisting of all-natural ingredients, from improved overall health to increased energy levels.

All dogs are unique and, when choosing a food, you will need to balance the cost, convenience, and needs of your particular animal. For those reasons, it’s hard to say that any particular food is definitely the best - but let’s look at some key reasons why all-natural dog food may be the right choice for your beloved companion (2).

Health Benefits

One of the most significant advantages of an all-natural diet for a dog is the added nutritional quality it can provide. By eliminating artificial additives and preservatives commonly found in commercial dog foods, you can help mitigate potential risks and avoid harmful effects on your dog's health (1). These additives and preservatives in non-natural dog food may also not be obvious ingredients themselves, too, but could have been used in the ingredients included in the commercial dog food mix (such as pesticides, GMOs, or hormones used in the growth of the actual individual ingredients themselves).

Natural dog food promotes improved digestion by eliminating many of the synthetic components that can lead to digestive upsets. As such, feeding natural dog food may reduce the likelihood of gastrointestinal issues. 

Additionally, a dog food brand with fewer additives can help reduce allergies and skin problems, leading to a happier and healthier pup. Much of the time, skin allergies in dogs are assumed to be environmental, but the food the animal eats may also be a common culprit to assess.

With all-natural ingredients, your dog can experience increased energy and vitality, allowing them to live their best life for as long as possible.

Better Nutritional Value

All-natural dog food typically offers higher-quality ingredients (3) compared to most commercial dog foods. By choosing more natural options, you can generally count on your dog receiving a more balanced and natural blend of nutrients that the canine body needs in order to thrive. Natural dog food brands avoid relying on too many fillers and artificial additives, each of which may have little to no nutritional value. 

With a focus on quality, your canine friend will benefit from the superior nutrition that all-natural dog food provides. This may result in better coat quality, healthier skin, optimal digestion, ideal energy levels, hormone and kidney function, and much more.

It is worth noting that not all natural food is made equal and some brands that claim to produce an “all-natural” option could be cutting corners in other ways. As a general guideline, though, the more natural and whole ingredients used in the ingredient composition, the more likely the finished product will have a higher nutritional value.

Enhanced Digestibility

Speaking of digestion, when it comes to the canine digestive system, all-natural dog food has a clear advantage. Natural dog food is made with whole and easily digestible ingredients, making it gentler on your dog's system to process and absorb the nutrients. 

Additionally, while food-specific allergies are actually not that common in dogs, natural dog food can avoid some of the common allergens that may cause digestive issues in some dogs. For example, dogs that are prone to food allergies may experience vomiting, diarrhea, and/or general irritation and inflammation due to various food additives they ingest.

By choosing all-natural options, you can minimize the risk of gastrointestinal problems and promote a healthy digestive system for your dog.

Improved Weight Management

Weight management is a key part of your dog's overall health and well-being. All-natural dog food, if well formulated, may help with this aspect as well. Natural dog food can tend to be more nutrient and calorie dense which, with controlled caloric intake, can help your dog feel more full and avoid the urge to overeat. This can help your dog maintain a healthy weight for his or her age, breed, and lifestage. 

Further, natural options often include lean protein sources, which can aid in building and maintaining muscle mass throughout your pet’s life. By avoiding excessive additives commonly found in commercial dog foods, you can ensure that your dog maintains a healthy weight and avoids unnecessary health complications. (5)

Promotes Stronger Immune System

A strong immune system is vital for your dog's ability to fight off illnesses and infections. All-natural dog food can play a crucial role in boosting and maintaining your dog's immune response. Natural dog food can contain antioxidant-rich ingredients that support immune function and while some commercial brands may as well, the supply is not as bountiful as what you can expect to find in a high-quality natural dog food brand’s product. 

There is also limited evidence on a dog’s ability to absorb synthetic ingredients at the same rate of natural ingredients. So, even if a non-natural option has the same amount of a particular nutrient, your dog may not be able to absorb it at the same rate as the natural and more easily digested ingredients.

By providing your pet with the nutrition that he or she needs, you reduce their risk of falling ill and increase their ability to recover quickly if they do experience an occasional bout of illness. Investing in your canine companion’s immune system through all-natural dog food is an investment in their long-term health.

Enhanced Dental Health

Many dog owners struggle with maintaining their dog's oral health. Like humans, dogs can suffer from tooth decay and gum disease, but unlike humans, dogs can’t brush or floss after eating every day. 

However, all-natural dog food can help in this area as well. Natural dog food often contains ingredients with natural teeth-cleaning properties. 

These ingredients can help reduce plaque and tartar buildup, minimizing the risk of gum diseases and dental issues in your dog friend. By opting for all-natural options, you can promote better dental health and ensure your dog's pearly whites stay clean and strong.

Increased Lifespan

By providing your dog with all-natural dog food, you can significantly improve their overall health and well-being. This, in turn, reduces their risk of developing chronic diseases and health complications that shorten a dog’s life expectancy. 

With improved nutrition and a stronger immune system, your canine companion has a higher chance of living a long, full, and healthy life. Investing in their diet and opting for all-natural options is a proactive step towards ensuring they have the most appropriate lifespan possible, with a focus on quality throughout all their years. (4)

Sustainable and Environmentally Friendly

Choosing all-natural dog food is not only beneficial for your pet but also for the environment. Natural dog food often utilizes organic and sustainable ingredients. By supporting companies that prioritize ethical farming practices and the use of sustainable ingredients, you contribute to reducing the ecological impact of the pet food industry. By choosing all-natural options, you align your values with your dog's health and the well-being of the planet.

Cost-Effective in the Long Run

Although all-natural dog food may seem more expensive upfront, it can save you quite a bit of money in the long run. By investing in your dog's overall health through natural nutrition, you can reduce the risk of illnesses in your dog, which means fewer trips to the vet due to health issues that may arise from a poor diet. (4)

Additionally, providing your animal friend with the necessary nutrients reduces the need for otherwise unnecessary medical treatments down the line. By prioritizing their well-being through all-natural dog food, you can ensure a healthier and happier dog while saving money in the process.

Happy and Contented Dogs

Believe it or not, dogs have preferences. Usually, they’ll eat the food placed in front of them but that doesn’t always mean they “like” it. Some dog food is more palatable than others and for a dog, high-quality natural dog food typically has a more pleasing taste and mouth-feel than heavily processed commercial brands. 

When your pet actually enjoys eating, he or she will feel happier and more content with the life they have at home.


  1. Hospital, U. L. V. (2022). Ingredients to avoid in dog food, treats, and bones. Union Lake Veterinary Hospital. https://unionlakeveterinaryhospital.com/blog/ingredients-to-avoid-in-dog-food-treats-and-bones
  2. WebMD Editorial Contributors. (2021b, March 8). Are there natural dog foods? WebMD. https://www.webmd.com/pets/dogs/are-there-natural-dog-foods
  3. American Kennel Club. (2022b). Fresh vs. Raw vs. Kibble: What Should You Feed Your Dog? American Kennel Club. https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/feed-my-dog-fresh-raw-food-or-dog-kibble/
  4. Nutrition, S. T. C. N. A. (2023, February 7). How dog food impacts your pup’s health. Furkin Pet Insurance. https://www.furkin.com/blog/dog-food-health-benefits#:~:text=Research%20shows%20feeding%20a%20whole,fed%20a%20processed%20food%20diet.
  5. Chew, D. (2020, May 26). Why You Should Always Choose Natural Food for Your Dog. Why You Should Always Choose Natural Food for Your Dog. https://www.dogseechew.in/blog/why-you-should-always-choose-natural-food-for-your-dog

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