There are so many types of dog food; which one should you choose? There are many factors that you need to consider like your budget, any additional nutritional requirements and your dog’s preferences. Once you have decided on type, you then need to search for a suitable brand. When we first had Poppy she was five months old and eating a very cheap tinned food. I would not have carried on feeding that to her as I am sure there was very little nutritional value to it. Also, it made her stink. Room emptying stink. So that had to go. But what to choose? She prefers tinned food and I would like her to eat dry. After a period of mixing wet and dry she now eats dry. When she wants to.
Dry complete foods
This is probably the most common type of food and there is a huge range of dry complete dog foods on the market and the quality varies widely.
Choosing a food specially designed for your dog will ensure they get what they need from the food and also buy the best dog food you can afford. Premium dry foods have the highest quality ingredients and many are based on chicken and rice or corn. Although these foods appear more expensive to buy, especially when you see the huge bags, you do not need to feed large amounts as you would with a lower grade food. Many of them actually cost the same, if not less! The shop I use handily notes the price per meal which is a great way to cost the food.
Some dogs aren’t keen on complete dry foods but will normally grow to like them over time. If your dog does not seem to like dry food and you wish to use this then try soaking the food in a little warm water to soften it or mix in a little tinned food or even sardine, gradually reducing the quantity until he accepts dry completely.
Although dogs should always have access to fresh water, dry food has as you might imagine less water than moist food so your dog may drink more.
Semi-moist and tinned foods
Tinned foods and semi-moist foods seem to vary hugely in quality. Again choose a good quality dog food with an easily digestible recipe i.e. chicken and rice and choose a specialist food which does not require additional foods to be added. You can get this food in tins or pouches which are good for dogs with smaller appetites though work out more expensive. Be warned that even a good and nutritional brand may not suit your dog.
I have enough trouble cooking for 2 humans so can’t imagine myself rushing to cook for my dog. Plus, I wouldn’t have a clue about nutrition whereas pet food companies employ very clever people to work it all out. But you can buy frozen and dried home-made food – yes I know that doesn’t sound right! Fresh food for dogs is certainly far more widely available.[wp-stealth-ads rows=”1″]
Hmm treats. Dogs can’t eat chocolate (it is poisonous) so I really don’t understand why people feed them doggy chocolate. They don’t miss it as they have never had it. But treats are useful as a training aid, a treat (ah that’s why they’re called treats) and a bit of boredom relief. However, all treats should be given sparingly, never more than 15% of the total calorie intake.
Again there is a huge market for treats and the quality varies considerably. Poppy doesn’t eat a huge amount of treats as she would rather have a ball than a biscuit. She does have a chew, a rise and shine and sleep biscuit and a few other treats as a reward. A friend made her some treats for Christmas and she loved them so home-made treats are something I am investigating.
If you give your dog a fair amount of treats, reduce the amount of food you give your dog. Some chew treats help prevent dental disease, but again check the label.[wp-stealth-ads rows=”1″]