Welcoming a dog into your life, regardless of age, is a tremendous feeling that is seconded only to perhaps having children – but the jury is still out on that one!
Your new pet pooch will creep into your heart as fast as he creeps into your favourite flowerbed. It is only natural to want the best life for your furry friend, and part of that will include feeding your dog a healthy, balanced diet so that he can live a long and healthy life.
Deciding what to feed your dog can be tricky; there are many fad diets out there – just like there are for us two-legged folks. Apart from physical and mental exercise, diet is the third most important aspect of your dog’s health.
5 Things You Need to Know about Dog Nutrition Today
1. Check The Labels
Carefully examine the labels on anything you intend to feed your new dog before you surprise your child with it. Relying on advertisements or word of mouth alone is not enough, regardless of how healthy those dogs may seem. The people who advertise those foods are often instructed to make the worst ingredients seem healthy.
Product labels always list the ingredients in order of the percentage they make up of the food. So, with that in mind, research the first five ingredients listed to ensure they are healthy for your new buddy.
2. Introduce Fresh Foods
Fresh fruits and vegetables are full of nutritious vitamins and enzymes that will boost your dog’s health. These foods are also full of fibre, which helps your dog’s system digest food more effectively and efficiently.
Do some online research and find a list of four fruits and vegetables in your area that you can readily incorporate into their diet today. These fruits and vegetables can be fed raw or steamed, depending on your dog’s age and the health of their teeth.
3. Choose Food Rich in Antioxidants
Inflammation is the leading cause of premature ageing, not just in humans but in dogs too. Processed, cheap commercial foods are filled with nasty ingredients that cause inflammation, pancreatitis, and even arthritis in dogs.
Get your monthly dog food from a reputable supplier and only buy food that you know will be good for your precious animal. A subscription service works best; that way, you will never run out of food and have to compromise on quality at the last minute.
4. Know What to Avoid
A dog’s digestive system is vastly different from our own, which means that certain foods could be tasty for us and toxic for them. If you’re going to adopt a dog soon, it is best to find out what it cannot eat.
Food items like chocolate, macadamia nuts, raisins, and xylitol are dangerous for all dogs, and you should never feed them any of those under any circumstances.
5. Avoid Cooking Meat
Humans are the only species on the planet that cooks meat.
While cooked meat is more palatable than raw, we lose many beneficial vitamins and nutrients during the cooking process. Avoid cooking meat for your dog whenever possible.
If you prefer some level of cooking to destroy bacteria, then you can lightly sear it instead.
Your new dog deserves the best life you can offer him, so start with nutrition and work your way up from there. He’ll shower you with kisses of gratitude in return!