Dog Nutrition Tips
By Editorial Staff
Contributed by Info Guru Paul Seaburn
Dog owners know that man’s best friend will eat just about everything, drink just about anything and use anything round for a dish.
That doesn’t mean that anything and everything is good for your pooch. Experts and veterinarians agree that good eating habits are essential to good dog health, especially when they see more and more overweight canines. These dog nutrition tips will keep your pet happy, healthy and fit.
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Keep plenty of fresh water in a bowl available for your dog to drink, especially if they’re the active type. Doggie water fountains designed to provide a continuous fresh supply of water are a great investment. Use a water filter if you’re worried about your water supply and give your pooch frequent trips outside if you’re worried about puddles on the floor. The benefits of water far outweigh a little cleanup.
9. Dog Food
There’s no consensus on best brands of commercial foods to feed your dog or whether to serve dry or canned. Vets recommend experimenting with a small bag or a few cans first to see if your dog likes the food. Follow serving guidelines on the package but cut back or consider switching if your dog gains weight. Feeding twice a day helps digestion.
8. Fruits and veggies
Experts recommend that one-third of a dog’s diet should be fruits and vegetables. Mix some in with normal food or serve separately if your dog is a fussy eater. Raw or cooked and cut up in bite-sized pieces is the best way to serve carrots, broccoli, beans, squash and other veggies to your dog. Wash fruit before cutting to get rd of pesticides. Veggies are great as treats too instead of dog cookies.
7. Dairy and Eggs
Dogs need protein and dairy and eggs are often an easier and more economical choice than meat. Cottage cheese is a good source of dairy protein that’s easy for dogs to digest. One raw egg added to food also adds protein. If you feed your dog dairy products or eggs, pick up its food and discard it as soon as it’s finished to avoid spoilage.
A tablespoon or two of vegetable or olive oil added to food is a great natural way to give luster to a dog’s coat. Cut back this amount if your dog needs to lose weight.
5. Foods to avoid
Onions, grapes, raisins and chocolate are good for humans but toxic to dogs, as are alcoholic beverages. Table scraps are not toxic but are a leading cause of obesity in dogs, not to mention a leading cause of begging at the table.
Treats are great for training and rewarding your dog, but many commercial treats are too large or too fat-laden to be healthy. If you use commercial treats, break them up into tiny pieces and opt for low-fat. Read the labels – if it sounds like junk food, it probably is. A good healthy alternative is fruits and vegetables in bite-sized pieces.
3. Cooked grains
Cooked grains are a good source of carbohydrates for dogs and can help if your pet has a sensitive stomach. Cooked oatmeal, brown rice and barley are good choices.
Many dog nutrition experts recommend adding Vitamin B in the form of brewer’s yeast to food to help a dog’s immune system. It comes in powdered or tablet form – check with your vet for the right amount for your dog. Vitamins C and E are also recommended by some experts, but check with your vet first.
1. Allergic Reactions
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If your dog has ear infections, gas, diarrhea or an itchy rear, it could be caused by food allergies. Watch carefully when you change any aspect of your dog’s diet – while all of the things listed above are healthy, a small percentage of dogs can still be allergic to them. The best cure for food allergies is to identify the cause and stop feeding it. A good way to pinpoint the problem is to cut back to a bland diet and add back different foods slowly.
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