Dog Food for Your Dog
Choosing The Right Dog Food for your dog
Buying dog food is about much more than just hitting up the pet food store and buying whatever happens to be on sale. Your dog has certain dietary needs, just like you do, and the market is simply glutted with dog's food options that do not fill the needs of most dogs. Many of these foods are not much more than the equivalent of a bag of potato chips or a handful of cookies.
Here are several things to look for when trying to
buy dog food that will keep your pet happy and healthy:
A ratio of half meat and half vegetables is the best diet, but it isn't always readily available in packaged dog food. The best thing you can do is read the label and find the best thing according to this ratio.
The first two items on the list of ingredients should be meat items– not meat byproducts or common filler materials like corn. Meal is a pre-cooked meat product, so if you see any kind of meal high up on the list of ingredients, you probably have a fairly high quality dog food. In all, three of the first five ingredients listed on the label should be some form of meat product.
Grains commonly found in some brands of food aren't healthy options. Corn is one ingredient that is often used as a filler material. Any grains included in the food should supply your dog with fiber, so try to find grains like barley, rolled oats, or brown rice.
Beware of dog food brands that include a single meat ingredient at the top of the list and then a bunch of fillers right below it. Manufacturers are starting to realize that dog owners are becoming savvier about the kind of food their pet should eat, so they trick consumers by having a single meat ingredient high up on the list but then loading the food up with fillers.
If at all possible, opt for holistic, human grade food for your dog. These foods are rather pricey, but they are among the healthiest options for your pet because they are less manufactured and cover all the nutritional bases.
Some pet owners or trainers claim that a biologically available raw food diet is the best option, but research simply doesn't support those claims. Also this type of diet is exceptionally difficult for any owner to keep up with, and you will be putting your dog in danger if you do not do it exactly right. Your best bet is probably to opt for a packaged dog food and simply read the label carefully..
The next time you head to the store to pick up some dog food, make sure that you are choosing wisely. You will likely notice some positive changes in your dog when you trade up her food, like a shinier coat or more energy.