Having a pet around the house can be very exciting, especially if it’s a new puppy. After all, you’ve got added company in the house. However, making sure that your dog is well fed can be an exhausting and overwhelming affair. Pet stores are stocked with an array of dog foods that can make your choice a bit difficult. Therefore, it’s important to learn how to choose the best dog food out there. With that in mind, we’ll take you through some of the top tips on how to choose the best dog food.
Consider Your Dog’s Age
This is arguably the most important factor to consider before choosing your dog’s food. There are 3 important dog stages beginning with puppy, adult and then senior. Age is important because your dog needs a specific amount of calories and proteins to grow properly.
To begin with, choose food rich in calories and proteins for your puppies because they need it for proper growth and immune function. Puppy pointers recommends these two dental treats greenies or dentastix. As your dog enters adulthood, you can reduce their calorie and protein intake because this could lead to overweight. Finally for senior dogs, choose foods low in calories, but high in proteins, fatty acids and fiber. This could help reduce metabolism problems as well as bowel inconsistencies.
Consider Breed Size
Breed size is also another important factor as most dog foods are classified according to breed-specific factors. For starters, small-breed dogs have a higher metabolism rate, therefore higher water and calorie intake. Also, their foods should be rich in minerals, vitamins, whole-grains and vegetables. Medium breed size dog – between 10-25 pounds should also have a healthy supply of fatty acids, vitamins, minerals and proteins.
Lastly, large-breed dogs which are most active should consume high-quality food rich in vitamins, carbs, fiber, proteins and minerals. However, they should be fed in moderation since they are prone to heart problems, diabetes and bloating.
Check the Ingredients
Generally, your dog should only take food that has balanced ingredients because this is vital to its development. Check if the label list has ingredients based on meats and weight. This is because dogs are mainly omnivorous and can only turn vegetarian in case of very bad allergies. With that in mind, make sure that the first ingredient is not tuber, vegetable or corn. Corns are relatively low in proteins, and manufacturers only prefer it due to its low price.
Always make sure that the company responsible for making your dog food has passed through Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) feeding trials. This makes sure that your dog food is free of any deficiencies since they have been fed to actual dogs prior to being sent to the pet stores. This association ensures that your dog food doesn’t have harmful nutrients that may hinder its development.
Contact Your Veterinarian
As much as most people ignore this factor, it’s actually very important. Always try to contact your veterinarian before choosing any dog food. Your veterinarian will run a couple of tests to reveal more about your dog’s health. Factors like infections, kidney problems and allergies are what he/she will be looking for. All in all, your dog’s current health condition can help you narrow down on the best dog food to buy.
All said and done, choosing the best dog food requires a lot of effort as well as professional help. Also, apart from consulting a veterinarian, you can also seek advice from breeders, trainers and pet groomers. This is because they have greater knowledge about canine nutrition that you can always benefit from.