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Beef liver has a LOT of vitamin A in it. Dogs with vitamin A deficiency can have problems such as: Poor Growth, eye disorders, Skin and Coat conditions, night blindness and reproductive issues.
Excess Vitamin A also causes problems in dogs. In humans 100g of liver provides 634% of their daily requirement or 31,718 IU of Vitamin A. “Since vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin, it is stored in the fat cells (lipocytes) in the dog’s body. Although vitamins are essential for metabolism, they can cause several problems if there is a build-up of vitamins in the fat cells”.
It is said that dogs require 2,272 IU per pound of dry food consumed. Dog vitamins can contain up to 1500 IU of vitamin A. If they are given more than this amount, it could lead to toxicity in the long run. For a 20 kg or 40 pound dog they will only consume maybe a half pound of kibble per day. So their Vitamin A requirement would only be around 1000 – 1500 IU. This means that 1/15th of 100g (or 8g) of beef liver would be the potential most likely preferred maximum amount.
Most people describe excess beef liver as giving their dogs loose stools. But again, most people only give their dogs a tiny amount when dog training.
Dog Training nutrition value of Beef Liver
The whole reason why offal, and beef liver itself is important to a raw dog’s diet, is that meat in general doesn’t have a vast amount of vitamin A in it. In the wild a dog would eat the whole of the animal and the protein, fats and vitamin and minerals would be a complete package when it eats the whole of the animal.
That is why just feeding meat to a dog is a bad idea. OFFAL and beef liver is an essential part of most dogs diets, on a raw diet or not, because it is also a NATUAL source of vitamin A as opposed to the likely artificial vitamin source that would be included in dog food and would not be as bio available and so not utilised as easily.
So the next time you consider giving your dog beef liver, don’t worry too much about any exaggerated toxicity claims. Unless a vet is selling you beef liver, they might feel likely to tell you eating it is a bad idea !