Healthiest Kibble Dog Food
Are you one of the many pet owners that has difficulty in deciding the best dry dog food to buy for your dog? Most pet parents truly want to provide their pets with the most nutritious dog food that is best for their health and struggle with this decision. One of the biggest concerns that pet parents have is the cost of the food as many are on a limited budget. Dry or kibble, as it’s known in the industry, is the least expensive verses wet, canned or raw.
Your budget will determine which is best. However, not all dog food is the same and knowing what to look for in kibble dog food is very important.
Some of the basic differences between the dry and wet dog food is mentioned below. You must decide from the start how you want to approach the feeding of your dog. The decision you make will ultimately determine your dog’s health as they grow into adult and senior phases of life.
Commercial Dog Food
Commercial dog food that’s being produced on the market today is the cheapest, but sometimes not the most nutritious. The reason is it may contain some ingredients that may not be the most healthful for your pet. So, it’s very important to know which of these ingredients that need to be avoided in the dog food being manufactured today. There are plenty of dog food manufacturers and some produce dog food that is a lot better than others.
Your dog’s health is totally dependent upon you providing them with the most nutritious dog food. They cannot speak back to you, but they can show you signs of what they are eating is not beneficial to them.
Probably the best type of kibble to buy for your dog is grain-free, organic, complete and balanced, and premium dog food. You will need to look for these terms on the packaging. By providing this type of good quality food for your dog has shown to add at least two years of life for them. Stated in another way, feeding your dog the poorest grade of dog food can lower their age expectancy by two years.
Here’s a tip that you can use when shopping for dog food is to look at the ingredients label on the package to be sure that the meat mentioned on it is the first ingredient listed. If not, it’s a sign of cheap dog food that may be full of fillers and by-products and bad ingredients that lack vitamin and minerals for a dog’s healthy diet. The fillers and by-products are not as nutritious and lack some vital vitamin and mineral value when compared with other manufactured dog food.
Benefits of Dry (Kibble) Dog Food
- Lower Cost
- No Refrigeration Required
- Extended In Bow Feeding Time
Not all dry pet food is the same. Be sure to look for the following:
- Protein, Fat and Carbohydrates
- Vitamins & Minerals
- Protein Quality Indicators
- Other Ingredients
Some dry pet food is better than others. Mainly, choose organic, grain free, complete and balanced dog food. These products are healthier for your pet verses the regular commercial dog food brands. Generally, the organic and grain free brands are more costly verses the normal commercial brands. If your budget allows for it, it’s highly recommended that you buy only the best organic and grain free dog food.
Kibble is not the best as canned or wet dog food is better.
Foods To Avoid In Dog Food
- Xylitol (Artificial Sweetener)
If you want to learn more about this subject, here is a link to my article for ingredients to avoid in dog food.
You will need to avoid any unidentified meat ingredients such as meat meals, meat by-products etc. These are totally non-nutritious for your pet. You are looking for chicken meal or salmon meal etc.
Advantages & Disadvantages of Dry or Wet Dog Food
As with any dog food, there are some advantages and disadvantages between the dry and wet dog food. The consumer must be aware of these differences and ensure their pets are eating the most healthful and nutritious food which will provide for their overall health.
Dry Dog Food
- Ease of storage & feeding
- Easily rationed
- More energy dense
- Does not require refrigeration
- Lower cost
- Possible dental benefits
- Measuring food is easier
- Longer shelf life
- Encourages healthy jaws, in puppies
- Encourages dogs to eat slowly
- No spoilage when left out in bowl
- Lower Palatability
- Often contain more grains
- Lower fat content
- High carbohydrate content
- Limited moisture
- More likely to contain preservatives
- Hard food can be difficult for small dogs to eat with jaw problems
- Unhealthy ingredients
- High in gluten
Canned Dog Food
- Increased palatability
- Often contains more protein and fat which is beneficial for some dogs
- Easier to eat
- Added water, helps to keep your dog hydrated
- Balanced diet with minerals and vitamins
- More enticing smell for dogs with limited appetite
- Long shelf life when stored unopened
- Tendency to contribute to weight gain
- Spoilage if left out longer than 4 hours
- Limited shelf life after opening (3 days)
- Unused portion must be stored in refrigerator
- Higher cost
As you can see, there are differences between the dog food types. Your budget will probably dictate which type of food you will be serving your dog. Remember, serving your dog the healthiest dog food is best, but will cost you more.
Fat To Protein Ratio Tip
Some commercial dry dog foods may contain excessive fat which is a sign of inferior ingredients. The fat to protein ratio content of dog food should be between 50 to 70%. The lower this number the better. To determine the fat to protein ratio in dog food, just divide the fat percent by the protein percent and you get the fat to protein ratio number. For example; if the fat is 17% and protein is 29%, the fat to ratio number is 58.6% 17 divided by 29 = 58.6. If this number should be greater than 70%, do not buy that brand of dog food.
Serve Both Dry and Wet
Another method is to serve dry food over canned as it is easier to feed and ration. Dogs who bolt through their food may slow down slightly with kibble. Dry food can be purchased in larger bag sizes too, which can be more convenient for some pet owners. And if your dog is a grazer, dry food is a better fit as wet food will spoil within four hours after being served if left out. Kibble is easy to use in food puzzle toys to enrich your dog’s life and satisfy him without overfeeding. Healthful dog treats can accomplish the same thing.
If you’re worried that your dog’s canned food won’t provide all the nutrients he needs under certain deficiencies, consider blended feeding. Blended feeding mixes wet food and dry into your dog’s daily routine so he gets some of both each time he visits his bowl. Some pet owners choose to feed dry kibble in the morning and offer their dog a can of wet food at night. This covers all your bases, and provides your dog with some variety as well as a tasty treat.
Whether you serve dry or wet it will primarily be determined by your pet. Each pet is different and each have different tastes as to wet or dry dog food. Breed types will also play a role in choosing which dog food is best for your dog.
One decision you can easily make is to ensure that whatever you buy, it has wholesome and nutritious ingredients that will keep your dog healthy. Statistics show that a healthier dog has less visits to the vet as they grow older. It also can reduce the diseases that they may incur as they age.
A major decision a pet owner can do whether using wet or dry is to buy dog food that contain the words “Complete & Balanced” on the packaging.
Below are some benefits of using “complete & balanced” dog food:
- No meat or fish meals listed in the ingredients (chicken meal, salmon meal etc. are OK)
- Does not contain excessive fat
- Few to no fillers or animal-by-products in the ingredients list
- All-natural and/or organic
- No preservatives or artificial additives
- Usually only a few ingredients which is good for dogs with digestive problems and dogs with food allergies
- Tends to be high in Omega-3 which is good for your dog’s coat
- Made in small quantities at small factories which means it is easier to insure health standards
- Made with the whole dog in mind
All dogs regardless of their breed require certain amounts of water each day. A rule of thumb you can use is to ensure your dog drinks from 1/2 to 1 ounce of water for every pound of body weight per day. If your pet should be eating dry kibble you will need to increase the amount of water needed. However, if using canned food, you can reduce the amount of water they need per day as the food contains moisture which makes up for drinking additional water.
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As pet parents, be sure your pet receives sufficient amounts of liquid in the form of food (canned or raw) or actual drinking water. Also, change the water bowl throughout the day with fresh drinking water. You may want to consider using a pet Drinkwell Pet Fountain as they provide fresh water continually throughout the day especially when you are away at work. These fountains are great as they provide fresh water all throughout the day for your pet.
You can shop for the best rated dry dog food by dogfoodadvisor.com. These brands below are rated with 5 out of 5 stars for natural and wholesome ingredients providing your dog with a healthy diet without all those fillers and by-products.
Just select or click on the brand image and you will be taken to the Amazon ordering page where you can place your order.
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