Dogs are not just pets. They are family. In fact, they are treated like babies in the family. And every member of the family most especially the baby ones deserves the best we could give, be it a comfy home, unconditional TLC, or even the best meals. So, what is the best dog food?
Gone are the days that dogs are just mere pet dogs. Nowadays, owners and companions alike have brought their closeness to new levels. They get medical and grooming attention on top of the “parenting” that they receive. Dog owners go through great lengths just to ensure that their beloved companions receive all the proper care. Adequate exercise, visits to the vet, clothes and accessories, and vitamin supplements are just some of things that they have to be provided with. Over and above these, they have to be well-fed with the finest dog food one can find.
Here come the countless dog food brands and types flooding the stores and overwhelming pet owners, all claiming to be the greatest dog food the world has ever produced. Dozens of kinds of them line up pet store and supermarket aisles. From dry food, canned food, to semi-moist food, and natural food, holistic food, super-premium food, to organic food, the choices are endless. Name it, you got it.
Since pet owners are bombarded with a lot of pet food choices, coming up with a decision as to which one is the top dog food can be quite a challenge. Things have also become more difficult with all the negative publicity that big commercial dog food companies have been getting. What are our options anyway?
Well, granting for the sake of argument that pet food companies do continuously create special formulas for all known dog conditions, special or otherwise, but we all shouldn’t be blind to the fact that most, if not all of these products do not actually meet the necessary requirements for your pet’s health. Research has it that your dog’s food can cause illnesses such as skin allergies, stomach problems, heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, even if it claims to be the best dog food in town.
Pet food companies all claim to have the best, Grade A dog food under their wing, but let it not be forgotten that they do exist in the interest of business first, thus completely or incompletely taking for granted the interests of those who consume their products – your beloved pet.
These best-of-the-best dog food brands that claim to be the bestest in all aspects are actually created and marketed with you, as owner, and not your pet dog in mind. That’s why they come in pretty shapes, varied colors, and exotic flavors. Mind you that these characteristics are people’s perception of food, not your pet’s. The only characteristic that your dog seeks in food is taste. It doesn’t really care if the morsels are attractive or not. So, while you as pet owner keep yourself busy with all the marketed promises of these dog foods in store shelves, you neglect the very essence of why you have to feed your pet: nutrition.
Much as you are made to believe that your dog feeds on a big slab of juicy, tender, delectable and nutritious meat whenever you buy these products that claim they are the finest dog food that is far from what’s real. In fact, the pet food industry uses ingredients that are unfit for human consumption. They make a profit from waste that would otherwise be worthless to them. They add ingredients that never in your wildest dreams did you consider feeding your pet with.
On the contrary, not all pet foods contain poor quality ingredients. But you have to be vigilant as a pet owner. Read and understand the labels in order for you to make an informed decision. But, unfortunately, pet food companies use difficult to understand terms to describe the ingredients that go into their products. They will continue to sell what barely passes as food. They just want to keep the money tree growing and bearing fruits to the expense of pets who will be suffering from liver damage, cancer, or any number of other illnesses. And, sadly, pet owners do this to them unknowingly, thinking that they give their pets the best dog food.
Here are a few key points on the three major categories of dog food that will throw some light as to the truth behind the claims of the greatest dog food products.
Commercial Dog Food
This includes the packaged foods you find at your local supermarket, pet store or veterinarian. Commercial dog food is available in dry, semi dry and wet (canned). Is the finest dog food included in this group? Not likely. This is the most popular choice amongst us dog owners by far. It is so convenient and reasonably priced. Unfortunately, there’s a catch. Most of these commercial dog food products are junk. Well, admittedly, not all commercial dog foods are killing our dogs – just most of them. Most, if not all, of them are deficient of the much needed nutrients of our dogs. You may even find stuff that did not pass the standards set for foods for human consumption present in these products. It’s a wise move to make more money out of human food rubbish.
This group is gaining more popularity. It includes the raw dog food and bones you prepare yourself or pre-packaged diets sold in the market. Raw foodies believe that feeding raw food to your pet dog giving it an “all natural” diet just like in the wild. Another benefit of feeding raw is healthy teeth and gums and well developed jaws, neck and shoulder muscles (from all the chewing). Is this the best dog food in town? Not really. On the contrary, those who disagree with this kind of diet point out the danger of food-borne illnesses through the threat of bacteria like salmonella and E. coli. Some also say that it is difficult to feed a nutritionally balanced meal the raw way.
Homemade Dog Food
All the odds and ends that you put together at home and serve as your beloved companion’s meal fall into this category. It has come to the fore with all the recent news about the dog food recall and associated concerns with commercial dog foods. This might be the one that you’re looking for.
The usual homemade dog meals include big meaty stews, healthy soups, pies, vegetables and maybe some raw bones every now and then.
So what are the pros and cons of feeding the best dog food in the form of home-cooked meals to your dog?
The benefits of preparing your pet dog’s meals from scratch are countless. For one, you have the complete control of all meals served to it, plus having the peace of mind knowing what exactly is being fed to your dog and how clean were the environs when the food was prepared. But it takes a really organized person to set up a homemade feeding plan and then prepare all of the daily meals. Also, the homemade dog food option comes with the added responsibility of formulating nutritionally balanced meals and meeting the calorie requirements for your dog. With proper knowledge, various good dog food recipes, and knack for cooking, you’ll get into the routine in not time.
The best thing about home-cooked dog food is that you get to feed your beloved pet real nutritious food minus additives, extenders and preservatives. Also, it really doesn’t cost much higher than the manufactured stuff. The benefits outweigh the costs in so many ways.
But wait! Feeding your dog with home-cooked meals is just like feeding a human being. There are foods that do not go well with its physiological make up too. Much as you yourself love to indulge in chocolate and dairy products, do not do the same to your dog. Also, do not include macadamia nuts, raisins and grapes to your dog food. And most of all do not incorporate alcohol. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out why.
The best thing to do before embarking on this endeavor is to consult a professional who can give you advice as to what foods in particular can and can’t you feed your dog. Your friendly vet is there to guide you.
Let’s cut the crap and look at a different way of providing nutrition to our pets. Many people nowadays have opted to cook rather than buy their dog food. Despite the inconvenience, a lot of pet owners have decided to prepare home-cooked meals for their dogs and they are one in saying that by doing so, pet dogs get to taste the real Grade A dog food ever.
It takes more than just looking good to ensure your pet dog’s health, and feeding it the best dog food in the market is not an assurance of achieving premium health. What is the best dog food?
The one cooked at home.