A nutritious and holistic dog food will include an optimal combination of proteins, carbohydrates and fats – plus extras like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and dietary fiber – which will help your pup maintain a healthy weight, improve skin and coat quality and boost its immune system.
For the easiest way to assess whether or not a dog food meets these criteria, read its label. The ingredients list should be clear and uncomplicated while being free from preservatives, fillers and common allergens like corn and wheat. A reliable dog food will have a guaranteed analysis that shows its proportion of protein, fat and carbohydrates in its formulation.
An essential factor when assessing whether a dog food is nutritious is its AAFCO nutritional adequacy statement, which will indicate whether or not its ingredients provide complete and balanced nutrition for each life stage of your pup. When selecting foods with this statement, always opt for those which meet it.
Poultry or fish meals offer an ideal alternative to beef for dogs with sensitive stomachs. Plus, fish-rich meals contain essential omega fatty acids which may reduce inflammation while supporting brain health.
Provide your dog with eggs as a tasty, economical source of protein. A single medium egg provides all of their recommended nutrition in one easy bite, and is easy to digest. But beware raw eggs which could contain salmonella bacteria; cooked ones should be perfectly safe to feed to your pup!
Cheese can also be an excellent source of protein for dogs. Cheese contains high amounts of calcium, making it a favorite treat! Just be sure to buy low-fat or reduced sodium varieties and refrain from feeding any to those that may be lactose intolerant.
Many pet owners try to change their dog’s diets to be grain-free because they believe grains are difficult for dogs to digest. While this may be true of uncooked grains, most prepared dog foods contain cooked complex carbohydrates like rice, oats, barley and quinoa which are much simpler for your pup to digest than simple carbohydrates found in vegetables and fruit.
Tractor Supply Co’s for health dog food brand is a private-label private label produced under their rural lifestyle retailer umbrella, featuring 1,600 stores in all but one state. Their for health line of dog foods comes in both grain-free and wholesome grain options that feature real meats and veggies; however, its inclusion of peas and legumes as a key component is cause for concern as these ingredients have been linked with heart disease in dogs.
For Health Dog Food brand goes above and beyond traditional offerings in terms of ingredients used, using natural preservatives, no fillers and no GMO ingredients. Furthermore, they use no ethoxyquin-containing fish meals sourced from sustainable wild-catch sources as well as health-promoting supplements like probiotics, chelated minerals omega fatty acids glucosamine and chondroitin to support joint health.