What are the most important ingredients your dog needs?
June 4, 2016
Getting your dog on a proper food diet is very important to ensure good health of your dog. Before you decide on home cooked, commercial and raw food for your dog, it is very important that you have basic understanding about your dog’s nutrient requirement.
Water is very important for your dog and owners should make sure that their pets have access to fresh water in a clean bowl. Most of the owners limit the supply of their dogs or take it away all together during the evenings to avoid all the late night bathroom needs. While this can be an effective house training tool, it’s not very good for maintaining health of your dog. Here is how water helps in maintaining the condition of the dog:
- Keeps them hydrated
- Helps in digestion
- Helps in regulating body temperature
- Flushes away bacteria’s which can cause urinary infections.
- Supplies nutrients and oxygen to body
- Helps in reducing constipation by moving stool smoothly
- Lubricated muscle tissues.
Along with the quantity of water, the owner should ensure the quality of drinking water. Tap water usually has chemical additives, such as fluoride and chlorine as well as heavy metals, like cadmium and lead that can be very harmful for the health of your dog.
Proteins are very useful in building and maintenance of organs, muscles, bones, hair, nails, tissues and immune system of your dog’s body. There are many foods which contain protein but the best sources are fish, poultry, eggs, dairy and beef. Adopted dogs can have history of bad nutrition and may be at risk of getting protein deficiency. Some of the signs of protein deficiency may include:
- Poor development of muscle
- Weak immune system
- Growth problems
- Brittle and dry fur
The best solution for this issue is increasing the protein intake in his diet. There are no problems with exceeding the levels of proteins, unless your pet has damaged kidneys and livers. Allergy to a particular protein can also hamper growth in your dog.
There are many findings which show that recommendations for reducing protein intake for dogs was not a good advice. The fact of the matter is that healthy dogs need a lot more protein and may require more protein than their younger ones as they metabolize the protein less effectively.
Fats are also a very important source of dietary energy in your dog’s diet. Fats can also provide the most effective source of energy in the food. One gram of fat contains two times more energy than one gram of carbohydrate or protein.
Healthy fats can come from following sources:
- Lamb fat
- Sunflower Oil
- Herring Oil
- Lamb Fat
Along with fats and proteins, carbohydrates are also one of the most important nutrients in food and can be major source of energy for dog’s body. Home dogs have low energy requirements then the active outdoor dogs. Energy from carbohydrates is required for fuelling muscles and brains and can be the most essential part of the diet. Most of the commercial dog food has 40 to 60 percent of carbohydrates and minimum proportion of starch as many experts believe that carbohydrates are less expensive than fats and protein.
Dogs cannot digest uncooked grains as easily as meats, which is why if grains are fed then it is better to cook to make them easily digestible. Make sure that you simmer grains and rice until they get soft. For adding extra flavour make sure that you add beef or chicken to it.
Sources of carbohydrates includes:
- Whole grains
Minerals and Vitamins
If there is something which dogs cannot acquire on their own is vitamins (except vitamin C). Minerals such as calcium, iron, along with magnesium are very important nutrients that are required for maintaining dog’s health.
Following are the foods which contain minerals and vitamins
- Dairy products
- Vegetables and fruits
While most of the commercial dog food manufacturers claim that they provide the most balanced diet for your dog, they may not pay a lot of attention to the minerals and vitamins which can get destroyed by the heating process. Holistic vets may also suggest alternative medicine for your dog’s health. They also treat your dog with acupuncture, homeopathy, chiropractic, herbs etc. to restore their health.
What is the difference between meat, meat by-product, and meat meal in dog food?
May 17, 2016
Meat and the Meat Meal
It is apparent that meat is more protein-enrich for dogs than any other food. Good quality meat is a rich source of protein than the regular wet meat.
Though, meat contains several benefits contain within it, it is, however, the diet component of dog food that contains an ample amount of water containing 70% water and only 12% protein while meat meal has an advantage over wet meat that constitutes around 5-7% water and more protein concentrates. It is more nutritious when the quantity of water is reduced.
However, meat meal is the dried final product that is obtained after a rendering process. It is very similar to making stew that is deliberately over cooked.
The meat stew cooking process dries up the water. This leads the end product to contain more protein in the meat meal. Before the rendering process, meat stew contains around 70% water with 18% of protein and after the rendering process, the resulting meal constitutes only 10% water with great amount of 65% protein.
All meat meals are not equally enriched with protein or carry good amount of nutrition. High quality dog meals are particularly made from meat that is protein rich. But there are also low quality dog meals available that are made from the waste of slaughter or with some percentage of spoiled meat.
Meat by-products in the dog food:
By-product are defined as superior sources of protein containing several nutrients. By-product meat contains high-quality components that fulfill the guidelines made by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
Healthy and protein rich meal by-products provide your dog with a balanced diet with plenty of nutritious elements that give them active and healthy lifestyle.
Other than meat meal, meat by products also constitute meat add-ons, lungs, liver, and kidneys that are simply not from the rendering process. It must be noted that meat by product must not contain any feathers, hairs or intestinal components that could cause diseases.
Healthy by-products contains vitamins and minerals with advantageous carbohydrate and fats that improve your dog’s health. Calcium and vitamins are not always present in meat, therefore, meat by products are a good substitute, since it has a good amount of vitamins and protein that are essential for your dog’s health.
Meat meal is by far more healthier for your pet than fresh meat. However, most manufacturers do nothing or very little to clarify the components of the dog food they use in their product. Thus, it is best to avoid dog food by that brand.
Should you keep dog food in your dog’s play area?
May 6, 2016
It is not always easy to get your dog to learn new things or adopt new habits. But if you try and discover the ways you can get your dog to do as directed, you will not only understand his instincts and temperament but will also control them better which will lead to have a well behaved dog. Creating a challenging environment will motivate and activate him. It will also help you in building a stronger bond with your dog.
There are many pet owners who think that their puppy or dog will get aggressive or hyper while playing with the kids in the yard or near the doghouse. It is always a good idea to keep his food the play area in order to challenge and reward him through a positive learning experience.
Apparently, all dogs enjoy chasing and running after things in. Putting his feed in the play area will bring excitement and a lot of zeal, which will nourish him with physical energy and strength. But you should control your dog’s feed and only give him enough food to fill his stomach, it should not be in excess which might make him wild or lethargic due to overeating.
Benefits of keeping food in the play area:
There are many benefits of keeping the food in the outdoor dog kennel, some of them are mentioned below:
Better Physical health
Having food in the play area will enable your dog to keep himself satiated throughout the day. Regular feed will keep joints as lubricated and also keep him energized even when you are not home.
Enhanced Mental Health
Proper food intake will not only enhance physical health but also the mental health of your dog. It will keep his mind sharp and concentrated on the tasks you give him during play.
Improved Social Skills
In addition to physical and mental health, keeping food in the play area will also enhance the social skills of your dog. The dog will stay nourished for longer period of time and will learn new things.
Keeping the food in your pet’s play area will enable your dog to appreciate and feel the relationship you are trying to create. It will lead to an affectionate bond in the future.
Keeping his food in the play area will enable your dog to have a fun eating experience while playing his favorite sport. Decide the games and set all the rules that could be fun and encourage your dog to feed properly during the intervals. This will also establish your credibility as a pack leader while improving your bond with him.
Putting the dog’s feed in an outdoor dog kennel will strengthen your bond with the dog and improve his eating patterns as well.
How many Calorie Does Your Dog Need Every day?
May 4, 2016
Making sure that your dog is eating properly is very important in maintaining proper health of your dog. To ensure this it is important that you understand the energy requirement of your dog since there is no set formula to determine how much energy your dog may require. For some breeds, it’s fairly easy to calculate the recommended daily caloric requirement considering the weight of the dog. But for some, it can be fairly difficult as there is no fixed chart to determine it.
Amount of calorie required is directly proportional to the total amount of exercise performed by the dog. For example, daily calorie requirement of a shepherd who works in a farm is totally different from that of a Pomeranian who lives in a hot apartment. Those kind of difference are rarely seen in humans and this is why it can get very difficult to get the proper answer for the question. The basic formula to determine the calorie requirement of a dog is:
RER in Kcal/day = 30(body weight of the dog) + 70
RER = resting energy requirement
Any variable other than resting will increase the rate of energy and will lead to an increase in calorie to meet the energy needs. It is important to realize that all these numbers are certainly not a reflection on maintenance of calorie but are of resting energy levels. For example, if we consider a normal adult dog then he is already about 1.6 times the resting energy requirement. While there is no table in the world which can tell us exactly how much food is needed to feed your dog we can calculate amount of exercise done by our dog.
How to feed your dog?
Feeding poor quality of food that is expensive but not healthy is never a good idea as it can get more expensive as a result of increased quantities that will be needed to feed your dog. To start off, select a high quality food and look at the recommendations on the label of the pack. It is always recommended that you ask your vet for his opinion regarding the ideal weight for your dog. If the vet thinks that your dog is over or under weight, then increase or decrease the quantity of food. It’s also important that you start weighing your dog on monthly basis to understand if the amount of food you are giving to your dog is proper or not. If weight of the dog has increased or decreased in a month, then change the quantity accordingly. A good way to weigh your dog on bathroom scale is to weigh yourself before and after lifting your dog.
Changing the Quantity
The amount of food required to feed your dog will change throughout the life of your dog. Most of the problems related to weight arise gradually during the transition of dog from puppy stage to adult stage which is why proper calorie precautions must be taken.
Are Greenies safe for dogs?
April 26, 2016
Nearly every dog on the planet loves to eat Greenies! The wonderful mint smell that they exude is an absolute favorite among dogs of all breeds! I know personally my dog was nuts for Greenies. All I have to do is going to the kitchen and grabbed the box and he was absolutely wild. It’s kind of cute and is one of the main things I look forward to in the morning.
Prior to choosing to feed my dog Greenies, I had done a lot of research to find out whether or not they were actually good for him. There was a lot of conflicting information out there, with some people saying that they’re great for the dogs and for their teeth and have no downside while other people were saying that they can get lodged in the dog stomach and potentially cause digestive problems.
We chose to run our own test and consult with many veterinarians on whether or not they are actually good for dogs. The results will surprise you.
After all of our test, Greenies were found to be one of the safest dog treats that you can give your dog. Greenies have been redesigned to be very soluble and will not get stuck in your dog stomach. However, you need to ensure that your giving your dog an adequate sized Greenie. What this means is that if you have a large breed dog you want to give your dog a large breed Greenie. Should you give your large dog a small breed Greenie, there’s a good chance that your dog will just inhale the treat and it may get lodged in his throat.
If the untruth Greenie words make it into your dog stomach, there’s a good chance that the Greenie will not become soluble and digest in his stomach. This is why it’s very important to get an adequate sized Greenie for your dog.
Greenies have a fantastic effect on your dog’s dental care. Every veterinarian that we talked to agree that Greenies have an amazing affect on protecting your dogs enamel and keeping their teeth healthy in white. In addition, Greenies are tested and approved by the veterinarian oral health Council, which is the official authority on oral health care products for dogs.
Now, like any other dog treat you will have to watch out not to feed your dog too many at one time. Giving your dog too many treats at once will upset their stomach and cause them to have diarrhea. You want to ensure that Greenies are part of your dogs well-balanced diet. As our parents told us when we are growing up, too much of a good thing can potentially be a bad thing.
You want to make sure when buying dental sticks that you do get Greenies. There are other brands out there, especially ones that are a lot cheaper, that claim to do the same thing is Greenies but in fact don’t. They actually provide a much higher health risk to your dog due to the fact that they are not as soluble as Greenies. There are some things that you can go cheap on in life, but Greenies is not one of them.
As always, consult with your veterinarian.
Is Raw Meat Safe for Dogs?
April 20, 2016
Over the years we’ve had a lot of people ask us whether or not raw meat is safe for dogs. This is a much more complicated question than people would think. It’s actually very contingent based upon several different factors.
Typically when people think of a raw meat diet for dogs, they think that is going to be perfectly healthy for them because dogs are natural predators when they are in the wild and live off a meat-based diet. In addition, dogs go absolutely crazy when us dog owners are cooking be in our kitchens, such as beef or chicken. Just because they go crazy for it must mean that they absolutely would love to eat it in that it’s good for them, right?
Not necessarily. When dogs are fed strictly raw meat diets, they are being deprived of several key nutrients that are essential to their long-term health. One of the main minerals that meat lacks is calcium. Dogs require more than healthy normal of calcium in order to have proper bone and tooth development. As you are well aware, dogs love to chew on things. Ensuring that they have strong teeth is a must.
Also, if large quantities of uncooked meat are fed to the dog over a significant period of time, research has shown that muscular skeletal problems could potentially arise.
Meat is very rich in vitamin A. Given every now and then, this could be a healthy way of supplementing your dogs need for vitamin A. However, when raw meat is given to dogs on a strict diet basis, he vitamin A levels can reach toxicity standpoint in the dog.
Raw meat also carries scary bacteria’s such as Salmonella. While dogs are much more resistant to these diseases and bacteria’s then humans are, they are still susceptible to them and they can present an extreme health hazard.
Finally, I had touched on that dogs thrive on a carnivorous diet when in the wild. However, this means that they eat much more than meat. In addition to the raw muscular meat that they eat, dogs also feast on the bones and internal organs of their prey. These extra parts of the body that they are eating are rich in nutrients that help them survive. Simply feeding your dog raw meat on its own it will not suffice.
No while it’s certainly possible that your dog can survive on a raw meat diet, it’s recommended that you balance their diet out with healthy, natural dog food. Giving your dog a treat of raw meat every now and then isn’t the worst thing in the world, but if you’re going to be giving your dog meat it’s probably a good idea to cook it first. Remember, your dog is not used to living out in the wild and doesn’t have an immunity built up to bacteria.
Exercise your best judgment feeding your dogs. It’s best to consult with your veterinarian if you have any further questions.
Why You Need to Feed Your Dog Quality Food!
April 18, 2016
Have you noticed over the last decade or so others been a focus on humans eating more and more healthier food? Have you noticed that more and more nutrition majors are appearing at American universities? Food science is becoming incredibly important. At an alarming rate, we are realizing that what we have been ingesting for years upon years is not exactly healthy for us. People are beginning to make smarter and more informed food choices. However, one unfortunate side effect is that most of these healthy food choices for dog owners have extended to their dogs.
For some reason, dog owners simply have not adapted to the times and done their research on the food that they’re feeding your dog. Many dog owners will simply by their dog food based on cost. Another reason behind their food choices, is whatever brand has marketed the best. This is why you see brands such as Purina littered throughout the supermarket shelves. They simply have great marketing, but they’re actually not that great of a dog food brand. They used to be, but then they started outsourcing all of their manufacturing to China. Simply put, the Chinese manufacturing of dog food is not up to the standard that you should be feeding your dog.
No back to the topic at hand. Most of the dog food that is out there these days is riddled by chemically created foods or poor byproduct or simply lowest of the low graded food that we as humans would never want to ingest. The reasons given to dogs is that simply put they will eat absolutely anything. Come on, you know this. How often has her dog hoovered down the most disgusting thing that you’ve seen when you’re walking him on a leash? It unfortunately happens all the time.
Dog food manufacturing companies have realized that they can put whatever they want in the dog food as long as a claim that it is a healthy dog edible product. Check out the labels. Often you will see meat byproduct listed. Okay great, they’re getting meat. That’s good right?
Not exactly. Have you thought that the meat that the dog is eating is an actually good for them? We have no ideal what kind of meat is actually being put in there. Just because it’s meat doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Or just because it’s meat doesn’t mean that it’s meant to be eaten. Technically, dog food manufacturers can claim that the peaks of chicken constitute as meat. Did you know that? Would you put that in your body? We all know that the answer is no. That’s the reason you should be feeding it to your dog. It contains absolutely no nutritional value that is beneficial to them.
Much like humans, it’s been proven that feeding your dog healthy dog food will have great benefits and only their physical well-being but also their mental well-being. Dogs that not only eat healthy food but also exercise will live much longer and happier lives than dogs who don’t. Even the most of sedentry of dogs that eat healthy diets are still much healthier than a dog who exercises a lot that meets a poor diet.
Incredibly important that you feed your dog quality food. Be producing a series of posts that explain not only what you can do but also what you should be choosing, what allergies to look for, what ingredients to look for, you name it. Stay tuned.
April 16, 2016
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