I think my dog would love soylent.
I feel like pet food IS Soylent for dogs. I admit I haven’t seen any of the news you’re referring to, but seeing as that is in many cases all they eat, it is essentially what we’re doing here. I can’t say, of course, that I know it is perfectly nutritionally complete, but it’s a complete meal replacement (in that they are no longer hunting caribou for their meals) that seems to be working pretty well for them.
You’d have to know a lot about the metabolism of dogs to do that. Some people here add chocolate to their mix.
There are standard dietary references for dogs. No one on this forum has discussed this as far as I know. At www.makesoylent.com you could create a nutritional profile suitable for dogs.
Woah, woah, woah. Let’s go with “dog food is Soylent” not “Soylent is dog food”. We don’t need any more dumb jokes about what it contains running around out there.
The biggest caution I have is perhaps the most obvious: while we have the option to talk to each other and say “hey, I’m getting these weird sugar highs and crashes, what are alternatives to maltodextrin?”, if anything similar were to happen with your pup, you might not know about it. Reading behavior and body language is a good start, but externally assigning causality to observed behavior is an inexact science.
From a nutritional standpoint, mass-market pet food is basically Soylent-for-critters. Adhering to standard nutritional guidelines as mentioned elsewhere would be a good start; however, after nutritional considerations, there may be a couple hitches.
For example, consistency. We as humans can come to peace with the fact that we’re drinking all our daily nutrients; critters cannot (to the best of my knowledge ). Making a shelf-stable dry kibble that doesn’t denature proteins may be a bit of a challenge… I feel like a canned wet food would be easier to create, but obviously that’s not suitable for all animals or budgets (for example, I have a cat who stoutly refuses to eat anything mushy, regardless of how sumptuous it smells).
The next issue I could foresee is dosage. I don’t mean to be pedantic, but in the interest of thoroughness I want to put forth all my thoughts. Canine dosage of any micronutrients would be…difficult for a layperson to measure, unless you were making a Very Large Batch. I’m not intimately familiar with the standard recommendations, but quite plainly, the canine RDI would vary widely from puppies to adults to elderly dogs, and by breed – it’s a cliched comparison, but a Chihuahua and a Great Dane have incredibly different caloric requirements. Additionally, I’m not sure that RDIs for micronutrients scale down linearly with weight.
Aside from that, there are other options for feeding your dog than mass-market kibble/canned food. Some people feed raw, some people feed homemade diets (the equivalent to the “real food analogue” of Soylent that I’ve seen some people exploring), some people do half high-quality kibble/half raw or homemade…there are lots of options. I feel like it would be more difficult to get your vet on board with feeding your dog a homemade canine-soylent than it would be to get your human doctor to get on board with you ingesting Soylent, too. This last isn’t a deal-breaker, necessarily; I just mention it because for me, it’s kind of a red flag.
I’ve been thinking about this for some time now. I looked at the nutrition charts on all the bags of catfood at Petsmart, and every single one of them was not well balanced. Each and every one was deficient in many things, and had too much of other stuff. Simply by switching my cat from Authority Salmon (30% fat) to Authority Chicken (9% fat) she has lost weight. I think this is DEFINITELY a very good idea. I would love to feed my pets some food that is actually balanced, rather than the closest these pet food companies can make it by scraping up and cooking/pressing the scraps from other factories. And the implication this would have for pet shelters is amazing. There’s been debate about the possibility of giving Soylent to homeless people, but there’d be almost zero backlash from shelters, I can tell you.