Dog Food Demystified
Updated: Sep 2
What kind of food should I feed my dog?
This is a question that I get asked on a daily basis. When I go into the super market or pet store, there are so many choices! When I was a kid, we gave our pets burgers, milk bones, and kibble from the super market. Our dogs lived a long time and seemed to enjoy their over processed and artificial space-age food. Things have changed immeasurably with food awareness in the past 35 or so years. We don’t want chemicals and processed food for us, or our animals. Some of us want holistic and organic food for our pets - human food quality. Unfortunately, that also means human food prices. We now also have to beware of pet food made with sub-par or potentially toxic ingredients. Being that most of us aren’t dog food nutritionists, reading the ingredients on the labels doesn’t really help much.
To ensure that your pets get the healthiest and purest diet there is a movement to make your own food. Most folks don’t have the time for this—but there are services out there that will make you holistic/organic dog food, and deliver it. For example, PURE Dog Food delivers in LA. Some folks go with raw food which is becoming much more accessible nowadays. You buy it in frozen patties from the pet store, keeping it frozen and defrosting it before use. A newer and more convenient option is to get the freeze-dried raw dog food which keeps well, and has very few fillers. This is a bit expensive, but very easy. One good option is Stella and Chewy's Raw Natural Pet Food.
There are many high-quality brands of dry kibble available on the market as well. Here is a great list of the top 10 rated dog foods with healthy well balanced ingredients. They don’t include some other smaller brands of dehydrated raw food and raw foods—but if you don’t have time to make your own food or go raw–you can’t go wrong with this list:
1. Orijen 2. ACANA 3. Eagle Pack 4. Fromm 5. Nature’s Logic 6. Stella & Chewy’s 7. Wysong 8. Pinnacle 9. Primal 10. Hi-Tek Naturals
Another good thing to try are raw veggies instead of high calorie treats for your pup. Organic broccolini, green beans, lettuce, celery, carrots, cucumbers, and apples are all great choices. I recommend trying a small piece at first to make sure that your pet can digest them. If your dog has a sensitive digestive tract, then it can upset their tummy. Carrots are a good one to start with. Cut your veggies or fruit into thin pieces. It is recommended to steam cruciferous veggies first. Veggies are especially good for dogs who have weight problems, but are always hungry.
Not all veggies and fruits are good for dogs. Do not give them grapes, raisins, onions, garlic, persimmons, or citrus. Here is a great online list of some veggies and fruits for dogs.
Hope this knowledge helps you to get through the pet store, and helps ensure a healthy diet for your little buddy.