One of the leading examples of a functional fiber in pet foods is beet pulp. It has been extensively researched and fed for the past two decades without incident (see June 2005 Petfood Industry magazine). Results show that it promotes consistent small stools in dogs and cats along with other gut health attributes. Critics have tried to vilify this ingredient by confusing it with red table beets, claiming it is full of sugar and blaming it for “red-coat,” among other things. However, nutritionists have been reluctant to remove it from formulas, in part because there were few alternatives that do the job as well. As a result, it has become the gold standard by which all other fibers are judged.
Citrus pulp: An alternative pet food fiber source?
An alternative to beet pulp that has a great deal of research support and could be a good candidate is citrus pulp, but for some reason it seems to be virtually absent from pet food.