When to Use Low Residue Dog Food

Low residue dog food is dog food that is almost completely metabolized during digestion. In other words, most of it winds up being broken down and used by the dog's system. Such food is usually recommended for dogs that have digestion-related health problems.

What Low Residue Dog Food Does

While some brands of low residue dog food contain medicinal ingredients, it is not designed to treat the symptoms of digestion-related illnesses. Rather, it is meant to give the dogs their daily nutrients while they recover. The digestion-related illnesses such as diarrhea, intestinal inflammation and poor liver function impair the digestive system's ability to work at its full capacity. As the result, sick dogs have hard time processing normal dog food. The low residue dog food, on the other hand, isn't nearly as taxing on the disease-addled digestive system. Once the dog recovers, he can go back to normal dog food.

Types and Ingredients

There are several brands of low residue dog food, each with its own benefits and drawbacks. Some products are customized to fit specific illnesses. This is why dog owners should consult their veterinarians before choosing which low residue dog food to give to their pet.

Low residue dog food is made up of processed organic ingredients, vitamins, minerals and artificial flavors. The organic ingredients include plant ingredients such as dried rice and animal-derived ingredients such as chicken fat, fish meat and dried eggs. While most ingredients are perfectly healthy, there are a few that can potentially cause problems. They include:

  • Corn grits - small pieces of corn grains. They offer little nutritional value and are difficult to digest, especially when they come in large quantities.
  • Chicken by-products - especially, any parts of the chicken that aren't used when it's cooked. Its quality tends to be fairly inconsistent, ranging from tolerable to not fit for canine consumption.
  • Beet pulp - dried residue left over when sugar is manufactured. While it can be a decent source of fiber, it can also cause allergies and ear infections. It can also put stress on kidney and liver if consumed in large quantified.