Please note that the following is for informational purposes only, and should not replace veterinary care.
This information was obtained from e-mail contact with nutritionist Melanie Sippel of Nutram Pet Products.
By: Petcurean Pet Products – Read more at www.petcurean.com
Although many foods on the market today are all life stage, you may need to choose a food that is designed to meet specific requirements. As an example, an overweight dog may need a food with fewer calories, particularly if lessening the existing food is not an option. In this case, you may feed the same volume, but your dog will be getting less calories.
Lamb. Chicken, Fish, which one do you choose???? Although lamb has gained popularity as a hypoallergenic diet, dogs acquire allergies based on exposure. In choosing a food that is suitable for allergies, choose a protein source that the dog has not eaten before. If you are not sure, go with something obscure, such as salmon. Any protein source for the non allergic dog is suitable, provided it is a meat-based protein source, such as chicken. Below we discuss the quality of proteins based on their biological value.
Goverment certified ingredients are essential for a healthy food. Some economy brands of dog food are made from inexpensive ingredients that are not easily digested. They do not provide the best nutrition. While they may technically meet the legal specifications for percentages of protein, fat, carbohydrates, etc., these foods have lower energy values and lower-grade proteins. Because of this, many health-building nutrients may pass right through your dog’s system without being absorbed. It also means that you have to feed larger amounts of that lower quality food to provide your pet with the same nutrition as a smaller amount of premium food. When you compare the cost of these foods on a per-serving basis, and realize how quickly you go through a bag, economy foods may actually cost more in the long run.
When you are looking for a healthy food for your dog, reviewing the list of ingredients on the back of the bag is a good place to start. By law, pet food labels must list their ingredients by weight. Look for a species specific meat or meal as the first ingredient, ie turkey, duck, chicken meal, salmon meal. Species specific meats or meals all have a high biological value, which means they have a high percentage of protein in the form of digestible, usable amino acids.
Always choose a food that has a balanced Omega 3/6 ratio. Look under the guaranteed analysis for this information, or on the packaging. Some examples of great Omega 3 sources are Salmon Oil, Flax Oil, and Canola Oil.
There are many ways to preserve a food naturally. Look for a natural preservative such as Vitamin E.