6 Tips for Choosing the Right Food for Your Dog
Owning a dog as a pet includes many things. It’s a fun adventure, but there are also things you should pay attention to. Some of these are your dog’s behavior, health and, of course, food.
Searching for the perfect food may be a hard task. Not only you may have no idea what food your dog likes at first, but it also needs to be good for his stomach. Additionally, it should be enough for your budget as well.
So, how can you choose the right food for your pet? Here are some tips.
- Consider Your Dog’s Size, Breed and Age
Dogs come in different breeds and sizes. Although you may think size is not that important, it actually is. It’s not unusual for bigger dogs to eat more compared to smaller breeds. So, look at your dog first.
Research your dog’s breed and check what food they should be given. A Chihuahua cannot be fed the same type of food as a Cane Corso, for instance. Pay a lot of attention to this.
Moreover, your dog’s behavior and health are important as well. If your dog is very active, they consume a lot of energy and may eat more. Puppies and lactating mothers need more proteins, while older dogs eat less.
If you feed your pet correctly, you can avoid a number of health issues.
- Choose the Right Brand
You’re probably sick of all those advertisements about how a brand is better than another and how their offers are the best you’ll ever see. Whereas you tend to avoid brand battles, a food’s brand plays a huge role in your dog’s good nutrition.
What you need to pay attention to is if the food has been researched and tested before being out for sale. The better food companies always do their research before promising endless benefits. The meals need to be balanced and contain enough nutrients to make your dog happy.
Avoid companies that never checked if the food is actually good for dogs. You don’t want your little friend to suffer in case of side effects.
- Check the Ingredients
What your dog’s food contains is very important. If you own a puppy, then it’s even more important, as they need proper development. Some nutrients are required to ensure safe growth.
For example, puppies need the essential fatty acid DHA for their nervous system, so the food you choose needs to have it. Puppy foods should have more of it compared to foods for adult dogs.
According to studies, puppies that are fed diets with the essential acid have increased trainability and memory. This should definitely be something to consider.
- Decide Whether Grain-Free Is Good for Your Dog
If you suspect that your dear furry friend has a food allergy, you may think that you should switch to a grain-free diet. Grains are not a bad idea. Unless they have a really severe allergy, purchasing grains is not a problem. In some cases, you can even avoid the atrocious price that comes with this product.
If you’re not sure whether your dog is allergic to food or not, pay close attention to his behavior. If you notice symptoms such as gas, diarrhea, vomiting, paw licking or scratching, your dog may have an allergy. To make sure, visit your veterinarian if you notice any of these signs.
Most of the times, it’s not the grains that cause the problem, but the food’s main protein, like beef or chicken. So, consider your dog’s needs before buying grains in the heat of the moment.
- Check in With Your Vet About Homemade Food
Sometimes, you may ask yourself “Why purchase dog food when I can feed my pet homemade food?”. Well, you should be aware that not every homemade food is good for animals.
While you can save some money, it’s better to make sure that what you are going to feed your dog is safe enough. Therefore, visit a veterinary nutritionist. He will be able to inform you whether your dog’s diet will be balanced enough or not. Moreover, he may advise you against homemade food if it’s nutritionally deficient or toxic.
- Be Careful With Raw Diets
Raw diets can pose a great risk for your pet. Whereas you may think highly of it because it resembles what a dog might eat in the wild, think better. There is little evidence that raw meat is healthy for your dog.
Not only it can be nutritionally deficient, but your dog may also be at risk of being contaminated with salmonella.
Choosing the right type of food for your dog ensures they have proper nutrition and that they are healthy. If you are not sure about what you should and shouldn’t feed your dog, check in with your veterinarian. It’s essential to take care of your dog and not put their safety at risk.