The average grocery or pet store aisle offers dozens of brands and varieties of dog food for your pet. What is the difference between these many options? Do the promised nutritional benefits really make a difference? Just like food for humans, dog foods vary greatly in the nutritional advantages, taste, and value.
When caring for your pet, the first place to start is looking at the nutritional content of food. Check ingredient labels, nutritional facts, and other information on the product's packaging to find out the unique qualities of each variety. Before heading to the store, assess your dog's health condition and talk to your veterinarian about any specific nutritional needs they might have. A number of medical conditions, from diarrhea to excessive shedding can be alleviated with a proper diet. Did you know that pregnant or nursing dogs need significantly more protein? By learning more about your dog and their individual needs, you can take the first steps toward finding the perfect dog food.
When it comes to finding the best tasting dog food for your pet, it's a shame they can't just speak up and tell you what they prefer. If you paying attention to your dog's eating habits, however, you should be able to notice preferences toward certain brands, varieties, and flavors. Often, rotating the flavor of your dog's food regularly (for instance one week chicken, one week beef, one week lamb) can help create a balanced diet as well as keying you in to which flavors your dog prefers cat food flavor enhancers. It should be noted, however, that just like the food we eat, the best tasting food may not always be the healthiest choice. Many of these products can be loaded with sugars and artificial flavoring and lead to dangerous (although tasty) overeating problems. Be especially wary of semi-moist foods, which most often come in the form of steak or bacon shaped treats, as they are especially full of unhealthy ingredients.
Finally, it's smart to be skeptical about many of the promises and labels that dog food producers put on their packaging. Phrases like "all natural" and "table grade" are entirely subjective and do not correlate with the actual ingredients or nutritional qualities of your pet's food. "Human grade" is the only title endorsed by the FDA, so keep an eye out for it if you are looking for top-of-the-line premium dog food for your pet.
Getting educated about both your pet and the many dog food choices on the market can help you make the right decision when standing in the pet aisle. Make check-ups at your veterinarian a regular practice and you are sure to make your dog's meal time a healthy and tasty treat.