What Is A Ketogenic Dog Diet?

Story takeaways: 

  • 6 million dogs are diagnosed with cancer each year according to the Animal Cancer Foundation

  • Metabolic diseases in dogs, such as diabetes, obesity, & cancer are on the rise. Pet parents have started to question what we should be feeding our dogs 

  • Ketogenic raw food promotes Ketosis in dogs: a state of fat-burning as opposed to glucose-converting. Fat burning is metabolically optimal for carnivorous canines

  • Ultimately, we argue that a Ketogenic raw food both biologically and metabolically helps dogs reduce chronic inflammation and metabolic stress, two health markers that are directly linked to disease

When you arrive at a gas pump, what kind of fuel do you put in your car?  

Do you switch between premium, regular, and mid-grade? Do you choose a gas type based on how it makes you feel? OR, do you choose the most appropriate fuel for your car, based on what is best for the car?  

Why don't we do the same for our dogs?

Clearly, dogs are different than cars. Dogs are members of our families while cars are tools. Despite the fact that dogs are so important to us, we continue to feed them sub-optimal food. We've been taught (by the Big Pet Food Industry) that putting the wrong "fuel," or feeding dogs species-inappropriate food, will somehow = a long and healthy life.  

We've been tricked into thinking since dogs can survive eating cheap, inappropriate food, that they should. 

It's simple: giving anything (even cars!) improper fuel will lead to a lack of prosperity, health, and longevity.  

The detrimental effects of not listening to our own experience is clear: with rising rates of dog cancer, obesity, and diabetes, the correlation between species-appropriate nutrition (or lack thereof) and overall health has become even more apparent.  

In light of this, many pet parents have started asking themselves: what is the best possible food that I can feed my dog so that they can have the best chance of living a long, healthy life?

We Believe: Ketogenic Raw Food

In this article, we'll be discussing feeding dogs optimally through a Ketogenic diet. If you're wondering, "why raw food?" LEARN MORE HERE.

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"Ketogenic diets are powerful metabolic tools that help your body switch from burning sugar (carbs) to burning fat. The result of that switch in fuel is an improvement in all sorts of health conditions." - Ellen Davis, source

Put simply, in a maintenance or nutritional Ketogenic diet, dogs eat a 1:1 ratio of healthy fats: high-quality protein.  

Since dogs are carnivores and 99.9% genetically identical to wolves, eating a raw diet of meat, organs, and bones is the most species-appropriate meal for dogs.  

When in Ketosis, dogs produce energy from fat-derived ketone bodies (source) instead of glucose from sugar and carbs (as found in kibble). Nutritional Ketosis is possible for dogs when they have a moderately-high ketone production (0.2-8 mM) and moderately-low glucose production (<75 mg/dL) (source).  

When in Ketosis (fat-burning) instead of Glycolysis (glucose-converting), dogs are able to thrive instead of merely survive off of biologically-inappropriate carbs and sugars.  



Dogs have NO biological need for carbs.  

When dogs eat kibble or food high in carbs, their bodies are metabolically working overtime to compensate for being fed species-inappropriate food.  

This stress can lead to increased risk for diseases like diabetes, cancer, and obesity.  

On the other hand, when dogs' nutritional needs ARE being met (and being met optimally), they have a reduced risk of developing metabolic stress and systemic inflammation, two things which are linked to diseases (source).  

The point being: when dogs eat real, fresh food that closely mimics how they would eat in nature, they are put in the best possible position to live longer and healthier lives.


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Excitingly, a Ketogenic diet has been used as a therapy to reverse certain diseases like cancer and other mitochondrial maladies in humans (source).

For this reason, a Ketogenic diet may not only be optimal for helping dogs live healthier, it may also help dogs suffering from various illnesses get back to basics with essential nutrients. Based on research done by holistic veterinarians, dogs can live optimally and thrive eating a Ketogenic Raw Food Diet…in the way that Mother Nature intended.  



At Bones & Co, we choose to make KETO APPROVED dog food because we are passionate about it.  

Since we believe that a Ketogenic raw dog diet is the most metabolically appropriate food option for dogs, we want to educate people about this diet and empower pet parents to make the change.  

We want to see fewer dogs suffering from issues made worse by poor nutrition and lack of information about proper canine health.  

There's no doubt about it: dogs are members of our families. It's up to us to make informed decisions about what we put in their bowls. 

That's why B&C is here to help consumers make informed decisions by: 

  • sharing scientific nutritional information

  • supporting a community of raw feeders

  • & investigating those difficult questions surrounding dog nutrition

Because they can't choose for themselves, we have to do what's right for the sake of dog. 


JOIN the keto raw-volution

Feeling inspired to learn more about raw feeding or Keto? Take action! Together, we put pressure on the pet food industry to become better and prioritize the well-being of dogs over money and convenience.

We’re here to do more than sell raw food: we’re here to start a Raw-volution. We need a strong community of informed pet parents, fierce raw feeders, and uncompromising dog lovers to make waves with us.

Have specific questions about your dog’s health? While B&C cannot give medical advice, we recommend seeking advice from a Holistic Veterinarian for your best furry friend (BFF). B&C is here to be a resource for you while you learn more about raw food, Keto, and dog nutrition!