With so many dog and cat food products on the market, it can be quite confusing knowing what to purchase. I therefore thought that it might be useful to have a thread on the principles of selecting a decent dog food.
First of all, I am keeping this quite brief because having just come across this website: Dog Food: What to Feed and Why
I see that it provides us with most of the information we need to help us in our quest to find a suitable dog food. It seems to be very helpful, particularly the videos on raw feeding. The specific urls of these are included in this thread
. There is some excellent advice on there so do take a few minutes to look at it. Of course we also have lots of information on this website to help us in our decision making. For dog owners, experienced or new who have never given the subject of dog food much thought, I would highly recommend that they spend a little time reading up. It seems very complex at first but actually it is not as difficult as it looks as long as you think of the basic principles:
Here is a very brief summary and I hope that members will add to it:
* The meat source should be single and named.
* The food should be clearly and accurately labelled so you know exactly what is in it.
* Food with meat and meat derivatives is not so good because you can never be sure what it consists of.
* The list shows the weight of the ingredients, heaviest first and the better quality foods will show the meat source at the top. Basically, the higher the meat content, the better the food.
* Dry dog food: Check out some dog food recipes and you will see high quantities of cereal and fillers - sometimes as much as 60/65% or more. Dogs can handle some carbohydrate but such large quantities are not thought to be useful nutritionally.
* Fillers: Kibble has to contain these to give it its structure. They are either grains (oats/rice/maize etc), potato, pea products or sweet potato. Sometimes they contain a combination of both carbs. It is worth deciding what filler you would prefer to have. I understand that sweet potato is thought to be a good one.
* If you are unsure about anything on the list, do an Internet search for it. Most ingredients are well documented.Variety is good
just as it is for us, variety can be good. No need to change food though if your dog is doing well on his current product. Practically speaking, this can consist of using more than one variety of your chosen dog food and mixing the two or using an occasional nutritious topper. Don't forget to decrease the amount of kibble when using a topper so that your pet does not put on excess weight.