What Makes Dog Food "Breed Specific"

At Pet Camp we see all sorts of dog food.  When you’ve got 150 dogs lodging with you, you’re bound to see plenty of types of food.  As part of this smorgasbord of doggie delights we often see “breed specific” dog food.  This is dog food that is marketed to a specific breed of dog.  But what makes dog food “breed specific”?

It turns out there are no standards for any breed specific dog food.  Now this doesn’t mean that the companies marketing breed specific dog food haven’t done any research or developed food that is designed to address some of the known issues associated with certain breeds.  For example, a food marketed to Labradors might be lower in calories since that breed is known to get fat, or German Shepard food might be designed to be easily digestible since those dogs are prone to gastrointestinal issues.  But that certainly doesn’t mean that one should expect that German Shepard dog food from one company will be the same as German Shepard dog food from another company.  It is also worth noting that there is no data to support that your Newfoundland is going to be healthier on a Newfoundland breed specific dog food over a general dog food (though if such a thing existed I might actually get some for Splash).

Interestingly enough, while the formulation of a breed specific dog food may not have any difference, the shape of the dog food might actually matter.  Royal Canin has been feeding dogs on glass panels with cameras underneath them to watch how different breeds pick up and chew their food.  Based on these observations they have designed kibble shapes to allow certain breeds to pick up and chew their food more easily.

What’s your experience been with dog food?  Do you feed generic (but high quality food) or do you feed breed specific dog food?

Thanks for reading.

Source: Your Dog, November 2016