So, you bought your pet a brand new dog feeder, and you are looking to stock it with tasty treats and food for your dog? Both you and your pet must be excited, but the sad truth of the matter is that not all dog foods and treats are created the same. By now, you have probably noticed that there are hundreds of different brands of dog foods available, and all of them claim to be the best. Trying to find a food that is affordable, healthy, and appealing to your pet can be quite the challenge.
You are not alone in your struggle. Tons of pet owners deal with the same dilemma on a daily basis. Below, you will find some important information and tips that will help you when it comes to choosing the right dog food for your pet.
Understanding What Is In Dog Food
As mentioned above, there are tons of different types of dog foods like duck, beef, and chicken. Some even provide a combination of these proteins to offer a tastier and healthier meal for your pet. However, when you look at the ingredient list, you have probably noticed that duck, beef, or chicken is not the only items that are included in the food. The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) has established certain rules and regulations as to what companies can print on the sides of the cans. Veterinarian Carol Turner said, “Never purchase a dog food that is not certified by the AAFCO.”
For instance, if the food says, it is an all beef product this means that the food must contain at least 95% beef, or it cannot be legally marketed. As far as combinations of foods go, both combinations must add up to be 95% of the food. For instance, if a can of food says, beef and chicken then the food can contain 85% beef and 10% chicken, which totals 95%.
Considering Glutens And Grains
If you have done any research on dog food, you have probably come across tons of controversial articles about grains and glutens. Grains glutens are used in tons of different brands of dog food, because they are excellent carbohydrates. When your pet eats these carbohydrates they convert them into energy. However, most pet owners tend to avoid foods that contain glutens and grains, because they believe that gluten and grain allergies are common in pets, but the truth is that this is just a misconception.
While these types of allergies are fairly common in humans, they are not as common in canines, so you can pack your holiday dog feeder with foods that contain glutens and grains.
Understanding Your Pet’s Nutritional Needs
Throughout each stage of your pet’s life he or she if going to require different levels of nutrition. Along with this, different breeds of dogs might require more nutrition than others. For instance, the nutritional needs of a puppy are going to vary greatly from an adult dog. If you look on the side of the dog food it should say something like “this food is recommended for adult maintenance”, or “this food is complete and balanced for all life stages.” Make sure that you are feeding your pet the proper nutritional value.
Properly Feeding You Pet
Regardless, of what type of food you decide to get for your pet, at the end of the day, you need to make sure that you are properly feeding them. Obesity is becoming a major problem throughout the pet community and has been attributed to tons of health related illnesses. With that being said, knowing how to feed how much to pet your pet can be a little tricky. Just because the food package says to feed your pet a certain amount of food, you need to remember that these are only guidelines and might not be completely accurate for your pet. A consultation with a vet will be your best option.