The vast majority of dogs are fed dry food. It’s easy, fast and probably sufficient for your pet. However there is an emerging trend of feeding dogs a raw diet. The name of the diet is BARF (which stands for Biologically Appropriate Raw Food). The idea behind BARF is quite simple. The dog’s ancestor, the wolf ate only raw food. Supporters of BARF therefore assume that a raw diet is better suited to your dog’s digestive system, thereby resulting in better absorption of nutrients and on the whole a healthier dog. Part of the idea is that modern processed dog food is missing important nutrients and minerals that dogs need. Supporters of BARF also believes that sources of protein from meat is much easier to digest for your dog than the protein, that is typically
included in todays dry dog food that comes from corn.
What to look for in dry food
The vast majority of dogs are fed mass produced dry food. There are many recommendations for exactly how much protein and fat your dog should get to stay healthy. Fat is an important source of energy and protein that builds tissue and muscles. In addition, your dog needs to be fed linoleic acid and several amino acids through its dry food. Content and quantity of phosphorus and calcium in the dry food is important for your dog’s bones and well-being. There must be enough of the two minerals and the relative quantity between them must be correct in a dogs diet otherwise it can cause bone diseases and impaired growth.
Virtually all types of dry food on the market today contains sufficient quantities of fat, protein, linoleic acid, amino acids and phosphorus and calcium in an approximately correct ratio. Therefore the most significant thing to look for when choosing dog food can be a comparison of the content of omega-3 fatty acids in the different brands of dry dog food. There are no recommendations that dog food must contain omega-3, but fish oil can have a preventive effect against skin allergies and have a positive influence on your dog’s joints. It is therefore a good idea to check if your dog food contains omega-3 fatty acids, as it typically is the only parameter where there is significant difference between different brands of dry food.
Standard dry food or luxury dog food?
Some brands of dog food are up to four times as expensive as many of the other cheaper alternatives. The price is not always justified, as an adult and healthy dog can live a long and well nourished life perfectly fine on cheap dry food. You can combinde dry food with left overs from the table, raw vegetables and other small treats from time to time. Whatever dog food you choose the most important thing is to keep an eye on
the health of your dog and that it always thrives on the dog food that it gets, and that it does not become overweight. It is estimated that around 60 per cent of all dogs in western countries are overweight. So it is not only the human race that modern life has introduced to lifestyle diseases.
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