What is Tripe
Tripe refers to the edible entrails and internal organs from the stomach of a ruminant animal.
Ruminant animals are classified as four-footed, hooved mammals that chew the cud regurgitated from their rumen. Ruminant animals have unique stomachs that consist of four chambers and systemically digest food with digestive enzymes, gastric juices, and amino acids.
While the ruminant species also includes buffalo, antelopes, deer, giraffes, and their relatives, this particular tripe refers to ruminant farm animals. Pet owners may have seen sheep, lamb, goats, pigs, and most commonly, beef tripe, on labels at their local pet store. You’ll want to look for green beef tripe, but we’ll discuss more on green tripe for dogs in a minute!
Types of Tripe
Not all tripe is created equal. Make sure you know what you’re buying in order to get the most out of your tripe.
You may have seen this tripe on the shelves of your local grocery store. It has been treated for human consumption by being bleached and boiled. Raw green tripe cannot legally be sold for human use. You do not want to purchase this processed tripe for your dog as it has very little to no nutritional value for them.
Green tripe is what you want to feed your beloved dogs. The raw, unprocessed stomach or intestinal contents. Sounds lovely, doesn’t it?
As foul as green tripe may sound, it is incredibly nutritious. In fact, it is also a very natural part of both dogs and cats’ diet. Before dogs and cats were domesticated and had to hunt for their food, they would often eat their prey’s stomach and other entrails.
Additionally, for undomesticated carnivores, green tripe of prey is often one of the sole sources of nutrients.
Green tripe is called green not because of its color, but because it is untreated, untouched, and unbleached. It is raw, “green” tripe and dogs LOVE it.
Forms of Green Tripe
Comparable to other meats, green tripe comes in different forms.
Locally sourced tripe
Whenever possible, this is the green tripe you want to purchase for your dog. Locally sourced beef ensures high standards and that it is sourced ethically.
Grass-fed or Free-range tripe
This is also a good option. Grass-fed and free-range means the animal lives in its natural conditions with the freedom to move around as they please. Look for grass fed green beef tripe.
Minimally processed tripe
Fresh is always preferred followed by frozen and lastly, freeze-dried tripe. Fresh, frozen, and freeze-dried are all considered raw food.
Low-heat, canned green tripe still has loads of nutrients but in order for the tripe to be canned, it has to be heated. Even though the amount of heat is incredibly low, some of the digestive enzymes and probiotics are still lost.
Nutritional Benefits of Tripe
The wide array of benefits from raw green beef tripe may surprise you.
Green tripe is very high in protein with 70% of the protein containing seven amino acids. These amino acids are crucial for your dog’s body to function properly and include:
- Iron proteinate
- Zinc proteinate
- Manganese proteinate
- Copper proteinate
Aids in Digestion
The digestive enzymes of raw green tripe allow the body to break down dog food into nutrients. The more digestive enzymes, the more nutrients your pup will be able to get from their food.
Digestive enzymes also purify the blood and remove toxins, fungus, and parasites.
Additionally, the dogs body is unfortunately flooded with toxins on a daily basis. Feeding your dog a raw food diet helps eliminate the toxin intake that is typically found in processed dog food.
Improves Metabolism and Helps with Hormonal Function
Two more important functions of the digestive enzymes. Cooking tripe eliminates the digestive enzymes which is why pet owners need to make sure the tripe is green and raw.
Aids in Enzyme Deficiency
If your dog eats a cooked or processed food diet, they may have an enzyme deficiency. The most common symptoms of an enzyme deficiency are lack of energy, chronic digestive issues, bacterial infections, and yeast overgrowth. Raw green tripe aids in the deficiency.
Promotes Dental Health
Freeze-dried chunks of green tripe have a rubbery texture. These chunks make for a great natural chew and are beneficial for oral health.
Contains Essential Fatty Acids
The essential fatty acids, Linoleic and Linolenic, are both found in their advised proportions in green tripe. It also has an optimal ratio of Omega 3 to Omega 6 fatty acids.
Calcium and Phosphorus
Green Tripe has a perfect 1:1 calcium to phosphorus ratio making it nutritionally balanced.
Good Bacteria = A Healthy Gut
Good bacteria improves the functions of the immune system and maintains a healthy gut.
Lactobacillus Acidophilus (Lactic Acid Bacteria)
Raw green tripe is chock full of Lactobacillus Acidophilus, or lactic acid bacteria, a healthy probiotic that supports the immune system.
In your pet’s body, the healthy bacteria (probiotics) compete with the harmful bacteria (e-coli, listeria, and salmonella) for the same resources and nutrients to survive.
Probiotics such as Lactobacillus Acidophilus fight to make to make sure the body’s digestive system stays healthy and fully functioning with optimal nutrition absorption.
But that’s not all that Lactobacillus Acidophilus does. Lactic acid bacteria also:
- Aids in treatment for gastrointestinal infections
- Serves as treatment and a preventative for vaginal infections
- Treats Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Aids in digestion
- Treats diarrhea
- Helps with chronic constipation
- Lowers symptoms of pollen allergies
Your pet needs healthy bacteria as part of their diet. Green tripe is a great way to facilitate those needs.
What to Use Tripe For
Ok, we’ve made it clear that if at all possible, you want to be buying raw, green tripe for your beloved pup. However, we recognize that not everyone is able to run out to their butcher who happens to have a bunch of intestines laying around.
High-quality, low-heat processed canned varieties of tripe also have a substantial amount of benefits. Yes, some digestive enzymes and probiotics may be lost in the heating process. However, there are still ways that tripe can be useful.
Weight Gain / Illness Rehabilitation
As foul as it may sound to pet owners, dogs love the taste of tripe. If your dog is struggling to maintain their weight or is recovering from an illness, tripe is a great way to get them to pack on those extra LBs. Plus, the weight gained will be health conscious weight from nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
Not many food sources or supplements can say that they promote weight gain AND weight loss, but tripe does. Dogs and cats tend to gain weight when they are on carbohydrate-heavy kibble diets. This is because while carbohydrates give your pup quick energy, it doesn’t last, leading them to need and want more of the high caloric kibble.
Tripe provides the same fuel of the high caloric kibble, yet the calories of tripe are packed full of nutrients and long-lasting.
While pet owners will, more often than not, detest the strong odor of tripe, pets love it. The smell is extremely potent, making it great for senior dogs who have begun to lose their sense of smell.
Additionally, green beef tripe is wonderful for dogs with kidney disease or kidney issues because of its low phosphorus levels and palatability. Dogs with kidney disease are often put on low protein or no protein diets and therefore lose all interest in their food. But trust us when we say, green beef tripe may be the answer to getting your dogs back on the food train.
Tripe is packed full of vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and nutrients. When a dog is pregnant or nursing, she needs even more quality nutrition as she is eating for herself and for her puppies.
Tripe . . . Stinks!
You may have seen this coming. As the raw stomach and intestines of another animal, yes, tripe smells… pretty terribly.
However, instead of thinking about the rancid smell, consider all the health benefits!
Things to Know About Green Tripe
There are a few things to note about tripe, just so you won’t be surprised later on.
As the raw inners of an animal, tripe does carry bacteria. Humans do not have the same natural protection against dangerous bacteria as dogs do. Just be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after handling tripe.
Sharpen Your Knives
Heads up – tripe can be extremely hard to cut through. We have faith that you’ll manage, but you’ll need your sharpest knife.
Where to Buy Tripe
For fear of sounding like a broken record, we won’t give the speech again regarding our strong preference for raw, green tripe. The following brands and forms of tripe dog food are not raw and green but do provide nutrients.
Canned Dog Food Tripe
Tripett Green Tripe (Yes green, but not raw due to the canning process, however, canned tripe can still provide great nutrient benefits)
Freeze Dried Tripe Dog Treats
Several of these brands, including Ziwi Peak, have both beef tripe and lamb tripe available for purchase for your dog.
These freeze-dried dog treats have loads of nutrients and are often found in beef tripe as well as lamb tripe. Freeze-dried dog food is also less messy and smelly, making it more appealing to pet owners.
Tripe Dry Formula
Where to Buy Green Tripe
Green tripe may be harder to find as you won’t be able to buy it at your local grocery store. Luckily, there are a handful of brands and other resources that can help.
Green Tripe Delivered to Your Door
There are a few online companies that will deliver green tripe straight to your door. Darwin’s Pet, Raw Paws Pet Food, GreenTripe.com, and Vital Essentials Raw are among the companies that aid in the convenience of not having to go to a butcher.
Depending on where you live, you may qualify to have Texas Tripe deliver your pup the best of the best. Check out their website for more details. http://www.texastripe.com/default.asp
Tripe – Worth the Stink
As a pet owner, you want what’s best for your baby, regardless of how foul and unpleasant it may be… right?
If you’re able to stomach it (pun intended), raw, green beef tripe can make for an excellent addition to your dog’s diet.