In this article, a selection of twelve dog food brands will be discussed. Their ingredients will be listed along with other facts and information that will be of benefit for the owner and the dog.
These twelve brands are considered some of the best dog foods on the market today.
Despite the 2007 disaster, commercial dog foods are often the ones to provide the best nutrients and balance that your dog requires and are still widely trusted when it comes to maintaining your dogs health.
Commercial dog foods are formulated with your pet in mind and the manufacturers must follow the AAFCO standards as well as other government standards placed upon them.
However, for the sake of variety, there are other brands aside from those you might be familiar with that are listed.
This is to display the many varieties and kinds of dog food available and to give owners an insight into what else is available if they choose to go with something other than the leading brands.
It is important to note that commercial dog food brands, especially those of high quality, much like the commercial brands listed below, meet the dietary requirements of dogs and often times exceed them.
High quality commercial brands use the best ingredients available and take pride in providing their customers and customer’s pets with the best options in dog food.
It is important to remember that dogs come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and that this affects their dietary needs. While the brands listed here are among the best, owners must be cautious about feeding their dogs new food and must always take all the variables into consideration.
Compare these dog foods to one another and then to what your dog’s needs are.
A veterinarian will be able to assist you when it comes to changing foods as they can tell you what your dog needs in the way of nutrients.
There is no average dog to compare all other dogs to, and only you and your veterinarian can know for sure if a diet is working.
Choosing the right high quality food along with proper exercise, portions, and meeting all the dogs medical needs, will increase your dogs lifespan and improve their mood and attitude.
But the responsibility falls onto the dogs owners, so being diligent about reading labels and choosing the right dog food seems to be only wise course of action.
In an effort to help you, the pet owner, and your dog, who would probably really like some better food, here are the top 12 brands of dog food that you should look into purchasing.
How can you, as a loving dog owner, decide if a new dog food is worth your attention By knowing not only what nutrients (protein, fats, and carbohydrates) your dog needs, but knowing what their sources should be.
You should also keep in mind that the main ingredients of your dog’s food will be listed before the first source of fat. Knowing that will give you a better idea of where most of the nutrition in the food is coming from.
So we chose our top twelve dog foods by taking a look at their ingredients, and seeing how closely they matched the following standards:
The protein in any dog food should come from high quality meat sources, because protein is the single most important nutrient in the canine diet.
Your dog is primarily a carnivore, with a digestive tract which has evolved to break down and metabolize proteins and fats.
But high quality meat-based proteins are also the single costliest ingredients in dog foods, and one of the ways in which pet food manufacturers preserve their profits is by skimping on the amount, or quality, or both, of the protein they use.
You should pass on any dog food which does not list either a named meat meal, or a named meat type followed by a named meat meal, as the first ingredient on its label. Walk away from any food which identifies its protein as animal meal, meat meal, fish meal, or poultry meal.
You should look for the words beef, lamb, chicken, duck, turkey, venison, any other specific meat or fish, or eggs.
You can bet that any dog food which does not mention where its protein came from does not have much of it, and what it does have did not come from the most desirable parts of the animal or bird.
BYE-BYE TO BY-PRODUCTS?
You will not have to make that decision if you are feeding a premium dog food, but if mid-priced foods are the best you can afford, the look for those which do not list by-products as their main ingredient, and make sure that the by-products they do list are specifically identified as beef, chicken, lamb, or some other barnyard animal.
CAN MEAL MAKE A MEAL?
Dont be afraid to go with a dog food which lists a specific kind of meat meal as its primary ingredient, because these meals are in no way the nutritional inferiors of fresh whole meat.
They include both meat and skin, and sometimes ground bone (all of which your dog would consume in the wild) but are free of the hooves, feathers, and fur which make their way into by- products.
Meat meal is simply quality meat from which much about 80%) of the water has been removed. It’s also formulated to have the correct calcium/phosphorus ratio.
Almost all dog foods, regardless of how much they cost, contain some kind of carbohydrates. We mentioned earlier that carbohydrates come in both digestible and indigestible forms, and each is necessary for your dog’s health.
Dry dog foods usually contain between thirty and seventy percent carbohydrate content, which is far more than a dog would consume in the wild.
Dogs can convert the protein they eat in to energy when necessary, but they can also convert carbohydrates, especially those which the dog food manufactures have processed for higher digestibility.
Because of this, pet food makers can get away with putting just enough protein in their foods to meet your pet’s need for amino acids and enzymatic function, and can supply their energy needs with much cheaper carbohydrates.
The best dog foods will, therefore, be those which have protein as their main source of energy, with their carbohydrate content coming from vitamin and mineral-rich vegetables and fruits.
WHOLE GRAINS, FRUITS, AND VEGGIES
If your budget requires that you feed a dog food which uses grains as a source of energy, try to keep its grain content as low as you can and make sure that they are whole grains, like brown rice, whole wheat, oats, or barley, because they are loaded with fiber but also those B vitamins we mentioned earlier.
Try to find a food which contains not only whole grains, but fruits and veggies, because they will keep your dog supplied with more vitamins, especially antioxidant vitamins which can prevent a host of health problems, and those essential minerals.
Vegetables and fruits will maintain your pet’s immune system function, while promoting healthy cell production.
Just like people, dogs can gain weight from consuming too many carbohydrates unless they are active enough to burn off the calories in the carbs.
Your dog’s system will convert carbs into energy more quickly than it does protein, raising his or her blood sugar levels and creating glucose which, if not burned off, will be stored as fat.
Another precaution you should take concerning the carbohydrates in your dog’s food is to watch for any signs of an allergic reaction.
Different breeds of dogs are allergic to different grains, with corn, wheat, and soy being the most likely to cause problems.
A food allergy will probably surface with symptoms which you will mistake for a flea allergy, and if you suspect the carbs in the food are the cause, switch to a food with a different carbohydrate base and watch for improvement.
Look for a dog food which has both Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids to maintain your dog’s skin and coat; sunflower oil, cold water fish oils; and ground flax seed are all excellent sources for these fatty acids.
But the best dog foods will also contain natural animal fat (chicken fat is often used) both because it makes them much more palatable and because it is a ready source of energy.
Finally, what’s not in your dog food is just as important as what is in it. Stay away, if at all possible, from any foods which use artificial preservatives, colours or other ingredients (and those by-products!).
Those colours are there strictly to please you, and your dog could not care less. There are vitamins and herbs which can function as preservatives, so try to find foods which use them.
Now it’s time for our own recommendations. In the next chapter, in no particular order, are our choices for the Top Twelve Dog Foods, which all got high scores for their high-quality protein, low grain content, and wide variety of fruits, vegetables, and nutritional supplements.