Soy and soy-based products have been considered nutritious for decades, and many health-conscious individuals include soy within their diet. It’s an especially popular ingredient among vegans and vegetarians.
In this blog, we’ll explore how to spot soy in dog food, and whether or not it is safe to include in your dog’s diet.
Is It Safe For My Dog To Eat Soy?
Soy is an excellent source of plant-based protein, and it closely resembles the texture and taste of meat. Due to the fact that it’s rich in protein and less expensive than other protein sources like eggs and meat, many pet brands include soy as the main ingredient.
So, your dog might be ingesting soy without you even being aware of it.
Apart from naming it plainly “soy” on the ingredients list soy is may also be listed as tofu, vegetable protein, gum, vegetable broth, textured vegetables, textured soy flour, TSF, and natural flavoring.
So is Soy actually safe for dogs to eat?
Dogs are carnivorous, and will not usually react well to a purely plant-based diet. Several studies have shown that dogs lack the bioavailability of soy protein, and hence soy can be harmful to them in the long run.
If you wish to feed your dog a fully soy-based diet, then it is always good to seek advice from one of our team
. While it may be safe for most, some may have a soybean allergy, and long-term use can be damaging
What Are The Risks Of Feeding Your Dog Soy?
There is the possibility that soy will be harmful to your dog. While soy might be the main active ingredient, there are lots of other ingredients in the processed food.
One of the main issues with soy is that many dogs have an allergic reaction to it.
Your canine friend has a different immune and digestive system than yours, and they can have allergies. A dogs immune system is a crucial part of its defense system, however, sometimes this can work against them and result in an allergy.
Reports show that breeds such as Cocker Spaniel, White Terriers, Labrador, Retriever, and Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier have a higher chance of allergies than other breeds of dogs. Around 10% of allergies in dogs are caused by their diet.
If this is the case in your dog, you should not feed them soy-based food and you should consult us
if you have been feeding them this.
A soy allergy may present in more than one way, including:
- Thyroid Issues
- Diarrhea and Vomiting
- Hair Loss
- Excessive Licking
- Ear Infection
Let’s look into these in a little more detail…
1. Trigger Thyroid Issues
Soy or soy-based product can trigger hormone imbalance and production of too much estrogen when consumed in large quantities.
This can lead to thyroid issues, which can be detrimental to their long-term health.
2. Diarrhea and Vomiting
As mentioned before, dogs are carnivorous animals and might find it difficult to digest plant-based food.
Eating soy in its purest form may cause stomach issues for your dog, like bloating and a tender stomach. Other stomach related issues like diarrhea and vomiting can occur, which will make your dog weak.
If your dog feels sick right after eating soy, you might want to stop feeding it immediately and consult us
3. Hair Loss
How much do you love stroking your dog’s soft, lustrous coat?
Feeding your furry love with soy can cause them to lose hair. This may be as a result of allergies, or other health-related problems caused by soy.
If you notice this happening with your dog then we suggest that you stop feeding them soy, and consult us
4. Excessive Licking In Dogs
Dogs are naturally curious and licking things is one way that they express and explore. However, if you find that they are licking themselves excessively, this might be a sign of an allergy.
With time it can become a compulsive behavior. If you found out that the soy you served your dog has caused it, stop immediately and seek medical help.
5. Ear Infection
Though hard to believe, ear infections in dogs can also be caused by soy allergy. If you notice your dog’s scratching their ears, or shaking their head then this might indicate an infection.
If you have noticed your dog displaying similar symptoms, seek immediate medical help.
So, Should You Feed Your Dog Soy?
The chances are your dog is already eating soy without you even knowing, as many mainstream dog food brands use it as a main ingredient.
If you are noticing any of the above side effects in your dog, then you may want to stop feeding them soy.
If you are in doubt about the safety of soy in your dog’s diet then you should explore our no soy pet food products here.