Choosing what to feed your dog can seem a little overwhelming and it sometimes might come down to cooking his or her food yourself. At the very least, getting some serious education about the good and bad dog food brands, and what ingredients your dog’s food should and should not contain.
Most of us know that our dog’s main food ingredient should be fresh meat. But, since going hunting for our dog’s dinner is not practical, we have to rely on the super market or pet food manufacturers to produce high quality dog food that we can trust, and that our dogs will happily eat long into their ripe old age.
There are some basic guidelines about what to look for on the pet food labels, to find the best foods for your pooch. The first rule is that the first ingredient in the dog’s food should be meat or meat meal. Not just any meat, but meat specified by its name. Accepting dog food brands that do not specify what kind of meat they used for their dog food is letting them get away with a very bad practice of using the worst parts of animals, which do not contain any nutrients. “Meat and bone meal” are not food. The same goes for the ‘by-products.’
Some people are afraid of the term ‘lamb meal’ or ‘chicken meal.’ The term ‘meal’ simply means that the fresh meat has been dried and ground into a meal, but its original content is still meat, as long as the origin of the meal has been mentioned – lamb, beef, chicken, salmon etc.
The source of animal fat is also important. Avoid food brands that do not specify the origin of fat. Meat fat or vegetable oil is not good enough. Chicken fat, flax seed oil, or sunflower oil is fine.
Avoid food brands that list grains as the first item on the list of ingredients. Dogs are not vegetarians. Many bad foods contain bigger percentage of corn, wheat gluten or soy bean meal than meat of meat meals. Canine food brands that contain peanut hulls, soybean hulls, rice hulls are stealing your money. russian food store
These ingredients should not be used even as fillers, as they contain no nutrients.
In both canned and dry food, there are some preservatives that are dangerous to dogs. Some of them are: ethoxyquin, which has been banned in Europe, BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole), BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) and a whole range of artificial colors and flavors. Menadione, often listed as Vitamin K3 or dimethyl primidonol sulfate, has been banned by the FDA as highly toxic. In fact, the only permitted flavor should contain specific source, such as ‘meat broth.’
Sweeteners also have no place in decent dog food brands. Dogs like sweet foods, but they are as bad for them as they are for us, maybe even worse. If the dog food brand contains molasses, corn syrup, sugar, sorbitol, fructose, glucose, propylene glycol or similar, leave it on the shelf.
If you are sick and tired of all the horrid stuff manufacturers put in our dog’s food, you might want to keep up to date by checking the latest pet food ratings on the web, or even better, pet food recalls, to find out which premium food brands have been recalled.