Dog Food – 8 Things You Need to Know For a Healthy Happy Dog

By | May 10, 2023

Dog food can affect a dogs behavior in several aspects.  It seems potentially a basic troubleshooting question by the vet, ‘What do you feed your dog?’.  Dog food can be a bit of a mystery for the uninformed and believe me, you want to be informed!1. Behavior – A poor dog food can cause your dog to be hyper-active.  If your having behavior problems related to hyper activity consider changing foods.2. Stool – Cheaper dog food contains more fillers, which will cause the dog to have bowel movements more often.3. Serving Size – Be cautious about serving sizes listed on dog foods, usually they are too high.  Do some research on your breed, his size and activity and determine the amount to feed him based on this information.  Discuss it with other owners of your breed and see what they do.4. Watch Those Claims – Just because a package says it “Complete” or “Balanced” or whatever, don’t assume it is.  Check the ingredients, know your pets requirements.5. Check The Ingredients – Avoid foods that contain artificial colors and flavors, animal by products, or preservatives.  Ingredients are listed in the order of their presence in the food.  Ideally you want the first few ingredient to be items like chicken, beef or fish.  Here is an excerpt from the ingredients list of a high quality dog food:Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Oatmeal, Ground Barley, Ground Brown Rice, Tomato Pomace, Rye Flour, Canola Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols, a natural source of Vitamin E), Tomatoes, Rice Bran, Deboned Whitefish, Natural Chicken Flavor, Carrots, Spinach, Sweet Potatoes, Apples, Blueberries, Ground Flaxseed, Ground Millet6. Investigate – Research the food you are planning to give.  Read the ingredients and check the website.7. Allergies – Some foods can increase or cause allergic reactions in dogs.  You may see increased scratching or other symptoms.8. Switching Foods – Never just take your dog off one food and switch over to a new one, except if there is an immediate need, such as a health issue.  It is best to mix the food and gradually increase the ratio of new food to old food, until the switch is complete.  Otherwise, your dog may experience digestive problems.Did you catch a recurring theme among these eight items?  The bottom line is do your homework, read ingredients and talk with other dog owners, particularly those with the same breed.  There are plenty of resources on the web as well.