What dogs eat is one of the most important factors that will determine their long-term health. Their immune systems, coat health, and energy levels can all benefit from a balanced, species-appropriate diet. Below you'll find three easy tips that you can implement to better your dog’s health today.
Keep Meat Raw
As the evolutionary descendants of wolves, modern-day dogs have nutritional requirements that are similar to their wild ancestors' needs. Dogs First says that a nutritionally balanced raw-meat diet can have a variety of benefits for your dog’s health. Some of the major ones are:
- Healthier skin
- Fewer allergies
- Shinier coat
- Higher energy levels
As with any diet, there are a few things to consider before serving your dog ground-up beef for dinner. It’s better to purchase whole meat pieces and either grind them up at home or cut them into small pieces before serving. Pre-ground meat can be high in bacteria that can be detrimental to your dog’s health. Bones and organs have important nutrients and minerals that dogs need to stay healthy. It’s important to incorporate those into your dog's raw diet as well.
Introduce Nutritional Fruits and Veggies
Fruits and veggies are great sources of vitamins and minerals for your dog. There are also a few greens that you should avoid giving your four-legged friend.
Apples are high in vitamins A and C, and bananas have lots of potassium, fiber, vitamins, and copper. Blueberries are rich in antioxidants, fiber, and phytochemicals, and carrots provide vitamin A to help keep your dog’s teeth healthy. You can try to use these foods as treats; their high sugar levels can have detrimental effects if eaten too often. According to ASEA, you can also add basil, lemon, or guava directly to your pet's food for a boost of vitamin B.
Some things to stay away from are avocados, grapes, cherries, and onions. These have chemicals that are toxic to dogs and can cause dangerous and even fatal reactions.
Don’t Rely on Kibble
Healthy Pets explains that dry food has many downsides and can even be dangerous for your pooch. Dry kibble only has a shelf life of about 12 to 24 months; the oils in the food can go rancid quickly. Good marketing has made people believe that this food provides a healthy, balanced diet, but it really doesn’t. Think about this: if it were possible to pack all the nutrition a body needs into a little pellet, companies would have already begun making human kibble, too.
It’s important for dog owners to choose what they feed their dogs with as much care as they choose what to feed themselves. Even just following one of these tips will have a noticeable effect on your dog’s health, so don’t delay in making small changes to their diet as soon as possible. Your pup will be much better off because of it.
Concerned about your dog’s health? Exercise is just as important for your dog as good nutrition. Pick up a Tether Tug today to get your dog moving.