All About Dog Food Forum
Dog food and feeding => General discussion => Topic started by: Marg67 on Dec 08, 2018, 18:15
If I don’t want to feed raw, what would be the next best thing?
Raw is not necessarily the best type of food. It all depends on whether it suits the dog and the owner. Also it can be nutritionally unbalanced if not done correctly. The raw completes take the guess work out of it and should provide a balanced diet. Proponents feel it is the most natural way of feeding a dog. Also, anecdotally many dogs do well on it, particularly those with problems such as itchy skin/ears and other allergic type illnesses. Disadvantages include the need for freezer space and thawing. It is very important to maintain high hygiene standards because if the meat does contain bacteria it can be transmitted to humans. My personal opinion is that careful consideration should be given where there are vulnerable people in the home eg babies/young children, elderly, those who cannot maintain their own hygiene and people who are immunosuppressed. This method of feeding is often not supported by veterinary surgeons although some accept it.
This page (https://www.allaboutdogfood.co.uk/dog-feeding-guide.php) has general guidance on the different types of food. Choice depends on such things as cost, convenience and what suits the dog.
Picky dogs such as your Bichon often do better on wet food because it is more palatable and it tends to have better aroma - appetite is stimulated by this. Wet food has the advantage that it is usually processed at much lower temperatures than extruded kibble so retains more of the nutrients. A large percentage of it is water so the dog does not become dehydrated after eating a meal. Another big advantage of wet food is that some manufacturers (usually of the better quality products) have several flavours in their range so the dog gets to have variety in it's diet. The downside of wet food is that it tends to be more expensive.
Extruded kibble makes up the bulk of the dog food market, is convenient and usually cheaper. It is processed using high temperatures and some of the nutrients are lost so have to be added back. Some dogs find it unpalatable, particularly picky ones.
We now have dehydrated food that is reconstituted with water. There is also cold pressed products which are dry (therefore convenient to serve) but are different to kibble because they are processed at much lower temperatures, thereby retaining more of the nutrients.
It is a matter of choice and no one product is right for every dog.
Great question Marg67! I actually just wrote an article on all of the different types of food currently available and their various pros and cons here: https://www.allaboutdogfood.co.uk/articles/types-of-dog-food-so-much-more-than-tins-and-biscuits (https://www.allaboutdogfood.co.uk/articles/types-of-dog-food-so-much-more-than-tins-and-biscuits)
Hope that helps
Thank you David. I missed that fact sheet, probably because it is a new one. :-[ It is very useful so I will make this thread a sticky for easy reference.