1. KEEP INSULIN LOW
- Feed fat and protein. Keep net carbohydrates low. (Total Carbs – Fiber = Net Carbs).
- Measure and track blood glucose. Aim to keep blood glucose below 80 ng/ml.
2. MAKE SURE YOUR DOG IS PRODUCING KETONES
- Measure and track blood ketones.
- Your dog should periodically show blood ketone values over 0.2 mmol/L.
Download our eBook: A Pet Parent's Guide to the Ketogenic Diet.
3. KEEP TOTAL CALORIES IN CHECK
- Do not feed more calories than necessary to maintain weight. This includes all treats.
- Studies suggest that calorie restriction alone can add years to your dog’s life.
- Depending on your dog’s body fat level, use 24-hour fasts periodically.
- Feeding once per day can also be used as an intermittent fasting strategy.
- Feed a low carbohydrate, calorie controlled diet to prevent inflammation.
- Ask your veterinarian to measure markers of inflammation (ask for a Canine C-Reactive Protein Test).
- High iron levels can increase disease and are correlated with cancer, neurological disease, organ failure and other problems.
- Ask your veterinarian to test your dog’s ferritin level. Serum ferritin is the best biomarker of overall body iron stores.
- Walks are just part of the equation. Like humans, dogs need some intense exercise like hill running or sprinting. Hide-and-seek is a great way to get them running hard while having fun.
- Remember that most dogs suffer more from inactivity than too much exercise.
- Dogs get less calories out of raw food than they do from the same food when it’s cooked.
- Some evidence suggests that dogs cannot handle fats that are cooked nearly as well as raw fats.
- All mammals need love and social interaction.
- Create a loving environment that keeps your dog healthy and happy!
- Dogs need to be challenged intellectually.
- Use games and challenges to keep their brains active and growing. Try hiding things or people from your dog and make them use their searching skills. Games like this are fun and they'll love the challenge!
This list is based on the latest scientific evidence from both human and animal studies. We’ve also included some info based on observations we’ve made that have yet to be formally studied. Unfortunately, many of these important factors for optimal health will not be studied anytime soon, as there is no financial incentive.
This list is a work in progress and certainly not our last word on optimal canine health. As new data and information come to light, we will continue to improve our understanding of how to make sure our canine companions have longer and happier lives!
Ready to change your dog's life?
1. Download our eBook: "A Pet Parent's Guide to the Ketogenic Diet".
2. Create a Ketogenic Diet for your dog using our online Keto Diet Calculator.