One of the most common question amongst dog owners is: what do I feed my dog? There are so many dog food options that it can become an overwhelming task and decision. There are many different brands and you are guaranteed to see commercials and
One of the most common question amongst dog owners is: what do I feed my dog? There are so many dog food options that it can become an overwhelming task and decision. There are many different brands and you are guaranteed to see commercials and advertisements on the television.
Each of these advertisements claims to have the newest and healthiest ingredients in their dog food. The questions boils down to: what is necessary for dogs to have in their diet? In a much easier world all dog food would be created equal, instead we are presented with an overwhelming amount of options.
What Makes a Dog Food Good?
The majority of people feed their dogs processed food or “kibble” and this might be an easy way to feed your animal, but it does not always contain all the nutrients your pup needs to stay healthy. Most of the foods on the market have undergone testing and are highly regulated. Usually dog food companies advertise meat as their main ingredient, but dogs also gain nutrients from fruits and vegetables.
Many foods are meat based and contain “fillers” the ideal food is a mixture of meat, vegetables, grain, and fruit. The goal in finding a healthy food is to meet all of your dog’s nutritional needs throughout their life span. This means that you will go through different foods and use different amounts at different life stages. A puppy’s nutritional needs are much different than a senior or adult dogs nutritional needs.
Sometimes a food really can be too good to be true, and all food should be searched and researched. If you find a dog food you plan on feeding you pup it is a good idea to do quick search to find out if the foods claims can be backed up. When you are searching look for scientific evidence or another credible source that has researched and studied the ingredients, such as a veterinarian or nutritionist.
It is always good to be skeptical of your dog’s diet! Some of the biggest misconceptions are: “Meat is more nutritious than meat meal” and “Grain/Corn/Soy is bad for dogs and should not be in dog food” Both of these statements are false. When you are reading an ingredient list and one food says “meat” and the other says “meat meal” the better option is “meat meal” this has a higher nutritional value then “meat”. Quality animal by products can be nutritious if found and sourced in the correct way.
Some of the organs of animals often have more nutrients then the muscle meat that humans consume. The highest quality dog foods will not contain by products such as: hooves, intestinal contents, manure, hair, and floor sweepings. As for grain, this can cause sensitivities for some dogs, but it can also be another form of wholesome nutrients. A little bit of research goes a long way!