There is a bewildering range of dog foods out there. It is so important that you choose the best for your dog. Here’s a quick run down.
Quality – it’s always best to check out the ingredients.
- Dogs are carnivores, so animal protein, like fish or meat should be the first ingredient on the pack.
- The second ingredient should be fibre. Rice or maize.
- Avoid foods containing artificial colouring, flavouring or preservatives. These can usually cheaper but can trigger allergies and bad behaviour in a dog, similar to feeding your child “E numbers”.
Value for money. High quality dry foods have detailed feeding instructions on the pack, indicating how much is required per day for the various sizes of dog. From this, you can work out how many meals per Kg your dog will need and therefore how many meals per pack. A 15Kg bag might seem expensive but it could last a dog for up to 2 months, providing it is stored in a cool place or an airtight bin.
Stick with one food. A good complete and balanced food contains all your dog needs. Other than a constant supply of clean water, there is nothing else to buy. Don’t add left-overs or chicken, fish or tripe to your dog’s meal. This can throw the balance of the food out and may encourage him to eat more food than is good for him. Switching foods can cause tummy upsets, so decide on a good food and stick with it, unless your vet indicates this is necessary for health reasons eg diabetes, allergies etc. For training treats, finely chopped cheese, garlic sausage or liver cake will get your dog’s attention.
Tinned food can contain up to 80% water or “moisture” and has to be used quickly once opened. High quality dried kibbles contain less than 10% water and keep well. They are highly digestible and convenient to use. I put my kibble in a plastic air tight box for easy storage. There is no mess, smell or contamination.
We use and recommend Burns, but James Wellbeloved and Eucanuba are also excellent well balanced foods.