How to Choose the Best Dog Food for Your Pooch
If you own a dog, you have an obligation to do what you can to promote good health for your animal. Dogs don’t have the same control over their health as people do, and they rely on their humans for everything from food to exercise. Dogs aren’t able to go grocery shopping or meal plan or even prepare simple snacks. It is entirely up to humans to keep their dogs healthy.
The first thing you can do to start being a responsible dog owner is invest in the best dog food for your pooch. But how does one go about choosing a healthy dog food that preferably won’t break the bank? Follow these tips to help you choose a dog food that will allow your pooch to live the fullest life imaginable.
Think About What Makes a Dog Food “Good”
Before you can purchase a bag of kibble or wet canned food, you need to understand the difference between “good” and “bad” dog food. So what exactly makes a dog food diet good? The first thing to look for in the dog food you buy are balanced ingredients. Although cats are considered to be strict carnivores, dogs are not.
Dogs are considered omnivorous animals, which means they should eat a combination of animal and plant products to remain healthy. The best dog food will contain a combination of meats, like poultry, fish, or beef, as well as plant products like veggies, fruits, and grains. A lot of people consider the non-meats in dog foods to just be fillers, but this isn’t the case at all. The non-meat ingredients can be just as nutritious to a dog as the meat-based ingredients.
The American Kennel Club says that “the best dog foods contain high-quality versions of these ingredients that are appropriate for your dog’s digestive system.” In other words, no matter the combination of meat-based and plant-based ingredients, just make sure they are high in quality. Generally speaking, a higher price tag means higher quality, so don’t just buy a dog food based on the cheap price.
Remember That Dogs Have Nutritional Needs Just Like We Do
All animal species have needs when it comes to nutritional, dogs included. The nutritional needs of dogs is not something that you can generalize, though. Just as each human being has a unique set of nutritional needs, so do dogs. Your dog’s diet needs depend on size, breed, activity level, and age, among other things. Never purchase a dog food that doesn’t have any specifications on the packaging relating to things like weight and breed.
Learn How to Read a Dog Food Label
One of the best ways to decipher a good dog food vs a bad one is to learn how to read the label. Same as human food, every dog food is required by the FDA to have a label listing all of the ingredients. There might be a few ingredients that you’re unfamiliar with or can’t even pronounce, but if this seems to be the trend for a dog food label, move on to the next option.