Nutrition – The Cornerstone of Your Dogs Well-being2019-04-17
Keeping your dog happy and healthy is a full time, daily task. It’s a lot of work, but that’s a huge
part of what makes owning a dog so rewarding. There might not be anything more important
that you do for your dog’s health than what you feed him every day. Of course, when it comes
to nutrition, there are so many opinions that it can be hard to know if you’re doing the right
thing. Throw in a few late-night internet searches and you could find yourself completely at a
loss as to what to put in your friend’s bowl.
So what makes good dog food? Of course, the answer isn’t always that simple. Every dog has
specific needs, depending on the breed and individual. That being said, there are certain facts
that you should know as a start.
First, domestic dogs actually get nutrition from things other than meat. We tend to think of
anything other than pure meat as simply “filler,” but according to the American Kennel Club,
grains, fruits, and vegetables all contain important things that dogs need. Of course, as with any
food, it’s all about quality. Yes, grains, fruits and vegetables are important to dogs. But that
doesn’t mean that simply because a dog food brand has these things, it’s necessarily the best
choice. You still want to do research, ask questions, and go with a brand that you feel has the
right quality of product. Nonetheless, unless your dog has a specific allergy to grains, you
shouldn’t write off dry kibble with grain right away.
It may sound obvious to say that simply reading the label should give you all the information
you need. Of course, we all know that labels can be purposefully misleading and many of us
have become cynical to advertising. One thing you can count on is the “Complete and
Balanced” label on dog food brands. This isn’t just clever advertising – it’s actually a highly
regulated term implemented by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
You can trust that any brand with this organization’s blessing has at least the minimum amount
of protein, fat, and vitamins that your little friend needs to stay healthy. It might not be
everything you need to know, but it’s certainly a good start.
This is another reason why having a trusted veterinarian is so important. A good vet doesn’t just
check your dog parasites and administer vaccinations, he/she considers every aspect of your
dog’s life and treats them as the individual that they are. Nutrition is a huge part of your dog’s
health and it’s a decision that should be discussed with a professional. If you aren’t sure what’s
brand is best for your dog, or if certain life events should necessitate a change in diet, your vet
is the first person you should talk to.
Remember, good nutrition is the foundation of keeping your dog happy and healthy. It’s
important to do you research and ask the right questions, and equally important to distinguish
between expert advice and people’s online opinions.
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