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What is the best dog food you can give to your pet?

English-bulldog-with-dry-food advice
© Shutterstock

There are many different feeding routines and diets that you can give to your dog. When looking for quality, what’s the best dog food you can give to your pet? When your dog leaves puppyhood behind, his nutritional needs change and he will require adult dog food. But with the many different varieties available, just how do you choose which is the best and most nutritional for your dog.

By Dawn Parrish

How to search for the best dog food

As you would probably expect, not all types of dog foods are the same. From one manufacturer to the next, the quality of dog food varies a lot. Certainly, you can’t always take for granted what it says on the label. Whilst many high-quality dog food manufacturers on the high street produce superior standard dog food, others sadly, don’t. Some lower-priced dog food supplier bulks out their products with artificial additives and fillers. Because pet food products aren’t covered by the same strict regulations as human food, pet owners need to do their research before they purchase.

Your dog’s nutritional needs

Dog diet The best dog food should meet your dog's nutritional needs ©shutterstock
 

Your dog’s health is directly related to the quality of his dog food, so give him the very best you can. Don’t cut corners and take risks with his health. The majority of our dogs have very similar nutritional requirements so it’s relatively easy to make direct comparisons.

First of all, when creating your dog’s diet, don't offer too much variety. This variation in different foodstuffs is only going to wreak havoc with your dog’s digestive system. Similarly, remove any uneaten food after a period of around 20 minutes. Above all, ensure that your dog has access to fresh drinking water at all times.

The dog food should suit your pet’s digestive system

When your dog is eating a suitable diet, the food should be easily digested. As a result, the stools he produces should be firm and a formed shape, dark brown in colour. The food may not be suited to your dog if he has diarrhoea or wind. Likewise, if he produces light coloured or soft stools. This could of course, also be the result of a digestive problem, so consult medical advice in this situation. If you do decide to adapt your dog’s menu, make this change gradually over 7 days to avert any upsets.

What ingredients are present in good dog food for your pet?

Dog food The best ingredients in good dog food ©shutterstock
 

Adult dogs that are both active and healthy, require a combination of these ingredients in their diet:

# Carbohydrates – provide fibre and energy to keep your pet feeling fuller for longer

# Protein – repairs tissue and build strong muscle

# Fats – to enhance taste, support skin and to provide energy (poultry fat, vegetable and fish oils)

# Vitamins and minerals – essential to aid the function of bones, cells and tissue

There are various regimes you can choose to give your dog a decent and beneficial diet. Different types are tinned dog food, semi-moist diet, or a completely dry diet. You can also offer these with or without a mixer biscuit. In contrast to the commercially manufactured foods, you can make your own fresh dog food at home.

Dry – complete diet dog food

These days, there is an enormous choice of complete dog feeds available, the majority that you feed dry straight out of the bag. To make sure your dog gets the optimum product, opt for a kibble specifically manufactured for their breed or size. “Premium” brands often include better quality ingredients. It seems like many of them are based on rice, corn or chicken ingredients.

Tinned and semi-moist dog food

As with many dog food products, the quality can vary enormously from one manufacturer to another. Certainly, its good advice to opt for one that contains ingredients like rice and chicken that your pet can easily digest. Check out the nutritional value too, as you want one that is a complete food and doesn’t need you to add other foods to it.

Home-made meals

This diet certainly requires more calculated effort than commercially produced dog food. If you feed your pet meat you also need to provide sufficient carbohydrate and vegetables too, to meet your dog’s nutritional needs.

Summary

The selection of the finest food for your dog is eventually down to you, his owner. As you are the person who regularly sees your pet, you’re the best person to monitor his health and his diet. Certainly, if your dog has a healthy appetite, is fit and active and produces a healthy, firm stool, then whichever option you feed him appears to be fine.  The right amount of energy and a shiny coat are also a testament to his diet being the best.

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