Your dog’s diet and cat’s diet has a huge impact on their health and happiness. According to my local vets, they always advice me and point out that the wrong diet can lead to obesity and life-long health issues. On the flipside, the right diet keeps our furry friends slim, healthy and in good condition. More specifically, these foods provide excellent healthy teeth & nails, shiny coats, and great positive energy level.
What should I feed my pet dog?
The things that we as pet parents need to check when buying our cat or dog food is:
– Something age-appropriate for puppies & kittens, adult and senior i.e. ensure they diet is based on their life stage or on special periods of their lives like when they are pregnant.
– If you feeding it commercial food choose on that is labelled complete as it will have all the essential nutrients to keep your pet healthy.
– Also check that the manufacturer is recognised by the pet food manufacturers association (PFMA) and also European Pet Food Industry Federation (FEDIAF) who set the bar for nutritional completeness in Europe.
– If you are feeding your dog raw foods avoid dog bones as they can be hazardous when crushed and cause chocking which could lead to death.
– If your dog like hanging around the table at meal times for table scraps don’t make them rely on this for their nutrition as this can unbalance them.
How would I know if my dog food is good and ‘complete’?
The UK food industry is home to some of the best high standard dog food brands in the world. In order to be legally labelled as ‘complete’, a food must contain every nutrient required by a dog in sufficient amounts to keep the dog healthy which means it should not be detrimental to feed it alone for an extended period. Dog food manufacturers have coined their products under different feeding regimes and with these there are many different qualities:
– dry complete diets,
– wet dog food,
– semi-moist or tinned dog food with or without biscuit mixer, and
– home-made food.
Puppies grow 20 times faster than adult dogs and so require a special diet to aid their physical development. With this in mind the most suitable diet should be easily digested and produce dark brown, firm, formed stools. If you realise your dog is producing soft, light stool or has diarrhoea and a lot of wind you need to consult with your vet as the diet might not be suitable for your dog.
Dry Complete dog food
It is better to stick to one variety of good quality dog food and do not add any supplements (unless instructed by your vet), as oversupplementing can be harmful to your dog. Therefore, to make sure your dog gets what he needs, choose a food specially designed for them and buy the best dog food you can afford. The ‘premium’ dry foods tend to have the highest quality ingredients. Many are based on chicken and rice or maize corn. So what the best dried dog food?
Iams crunchy kibbles consist of 30% dried chicken and turkey, making them a good source of protein. They also include Omega 3 and 6 to keep the shine in your dog’s coat.
Best wet dog food
The wholesome chicken from pure pet foods is grain free and you just need to add water making it suitable for all dog types. This delicious recipe features 100% human-grade ingredients and absolutely zero preservatives and no nasties. This food consists of Chicken Breast & Thigh (60%), so it is high in protein. There is also a mixture of Carrot, Parsnip, Sweet Potato, Cabbage, Apple, Green Bean, Cranberry, Linseed, Chicory Root, Brewers Yeast, Vitamins and Minerals to give your dog a balanced diet. The best wet dog food uk?
Most wet dog foods come in tins, trays and pouches. Ingredients are blended and cooked before being vacuum sealed into their containers and then they are heat sterilised.
Complementary foods are usually wet or raw foods that don’t contain the full range or the right balance of nutrients required to keep a dog fully fit and healthy and so have to be fed alongside other foods like complete foods, home-prepared foods or mixer biscuits. e.g. ‘toppers’ which are added to food to increase palatability, raw meat cuts (like chicken wings etc) and wet foods that are specifically designed to be combined with a mixer.
Mixers are essentially cereal based filler biscuits or muesli mixes, occasionally with added vegetables or herbs. They are far from nutritionally complete and have to be fed alongside a complete or suitable complementary food. Despite the fact that mixers have been losing popularity for decades, the right mixer combined with the right wet or raw food can still be a great option for some dogs.
Summary – deciding the right food choice
Looking by the amount of recipes and dog food uk product options available, it’s easy to see why pet owners feel overwhelmed by it all. Every type of food described above has its own advantages and disadvtages and no one category is ‘best’ for all dogs or all owners. Since everyone is entitled to an opinion about what to feed their dog, you will certainly encounter all sorts about what you should feed, the final decision has to come down to what’s best for you in terms of budget, ethical consideration like being a vegan, personal preferences & convenience etc) and your dog’s individual health and breed preference.