You’re browsing the ingredient list on the back of your dog’s favorite treats and you see….rice bran. Is this cause for concern? Should you keep feeding your pet a chew that includes this ingredient? Haven’t you heard it’s not healthy to feed pets? There’s a lot of confusion surrounding rice bran for dogs. But, this post should give you clarity about the ingredient and help you decide whether or not to include it in your dog’s diet.
What Is Rice Bran?
Rice is a long grain that comes in a variety of styles. Rice bran, on the other hand, includes just the outer shell of the grain, as opposed to the entire thing! It’s a by-product of the rice milling process and has been used in animal food for a long time. It’s gaining popularity in both human and dog diets thanks to its high nutritional value.
Is It Safe For Dogs To Eat Rice Bran?
The big question is….should your pet consume rice bran? And the answer is, yes, it’s perfectly safe! There’s been plenty of research that suggests that rice bran is ‘ok’ for your dog to eat. It has not been shown to cause an unhealthy inflammatory response and it has not been shown to promote any other health issues for your pet.
Keep in mind that moderation is key. You should only feed rice bran to your dog in moderate amounts, as part of a complete and balanced diet, or as a supplemental treat. And, it’s always a good idea to introduce a new ingredient to your dog’s diet gradually. Make sure you give his body time to adjust to a new food to avoid digestive upset. And, check with your Vet before adding rice bran to your dog’s diet. While it’s safe for dogs to eat, it might not be the ideal ingredient to add to your dog’s diet, and your Vet can help you determine if that’s the case.
Why Some Pet Parents Avoid Rice Bran
Some pet parents steer clear of grains in their dog’s diet. And while this may be necessary if your pup has a food allergy or sensitivity, it’s not a requirement! Healthy, whole grains can support your pet and his health and be an excellent addition to his diet. Rice bran, in particular, has some seriously healthy compounds that your pup will miss out on if you keep it out of his diet!
Others avoid rice bran because it has a relatively short shelf-life and may go rancid more quickly than other ingredients. And while this is absolutely something that should be on your radar as a responsible pet parent, if you feed a quality product that’s clearly marked with an expiration date, this is a non-issue for you and your dog. Stick to the recommended feeding guidelines and you shouldn’t run into any expiration issues.
Rice bran has sometimes been called a filler. And, by definition, this just isn’t correct! A filler is an ingredient that is incorporated in pet food for the sole purpose of padding the ingredient list. A filler offers no nutritional value and can actually be harmful to your dog. Rice bran, on the other hand, is packed with nutrients and adds a whole lot of support to any dog food diet. It’s definitely not a filler ingredient!
Should you add rice bran to your dog’s diet?
If you’re keeping rice bran out of your dog’s diet because he has a grain allergy or sensitivity, then you should continue to avoid the ingredient. But, if you’ve been avoiding it because you thought it wasn’t safe for your pet to eat, you might want to reconsider! Not only is it perfectly fine to feed Fido rice bran in moderation,
- It’s fiber-filled: We all need fiber, our pets included, and rice bran is fiber-rich. It supports your pet’s digestive wellness and can promote healthy, and regular, bowel movements. Plus, it works to feed the healthy bacteria that live in your dog’s gut. They fight off potentially harmful bacteria and work to keep your pup feeling his best!
- It supports weight management: If you’re looking to help your dog lose a few pounds, or you want to help him maintain a healthy weight, rice bran may help! It’s an ingredient that can help your pet feel more full, which can help prevent your pet from overeating.
- It’s heart-healthy: Rice bran also supports your pet’s cardiovascular wellness and helps promote healthy heart function to keep your pet healthy for years to come.
- It helps with skin health: If your pup experiences occasional skin issues, rice bran may help. It’s been shown to support overall skin health, but can be especially helpful if Fido is particularly itchy!
PetHonesty Products That Contain Rice Bran
Reconsidering rice bran for your dog? Reach for some of our supplements that include the ingredient for your dog. We’ve carefully formulated all of our recipes with your pet’s safety and wellness in mind, and include a healthy amount of rice bran in some of our products. Try PetHonesty Allergy Support+ Chews to help your pet live his healthiest life! It’s made with rice bran, probiotics, and antioxidant-rich ingredients that all work together to promote everyday wellness for your dog.