Ten Dog Food Myths
Myth #1: Dry food is the best food for your.
Long considered the answer for canine nutrition, new information indicates dry foods may be a source of chronic health issues. Obesity, arthritis, early kidney disease, dental disease, skin disorders and even cancer are just a few of the problems now being associated with the highly processed and excessive levels of carbohydrates in dry food only diets. Consider including canned food and especially fresh foods as part of your pet’s diet, keeping the dry to less than 50% if at all
Myth #2: All diets are complete and balanced for every dog.
Not all foods are created equal. The ideal diet for your dog depends on your dog’s needs—not whether the food is the most expensive or the latest brand. Protein, fat and fiber levels vary widely, fatty acid ratios can be unbalanced, vitamins and minerals are added based on the “average” dog and often therapeutic ingredients, such as fish oils, are at levels too low to be of any benefit.
Myth #3: Dry food is beneficial to dental care.
A dog’s mouth is designed for tearing, shredding, and chewing. Because of the size and texture, most dry foods are swallowed whole. Plus, the chewing of high carbohydrate foods produces a starchy film that can adhere to teeth creating a rich environment for dental damaging bacteria.
Myth #4: Canned food is junk food.
Premium canned foods offer higher meat protein levels, less carbohydrates, proper moisture levels, and less highly-processed ingredients. New recipes of stews, pates and minced textures with novel ingredients are enough to make you drool!
Myth #5: A dog must be kept on the same food through out its lifetime.
In the wild your canine will hunt and scavenge. So, why do we presume that switching foods is detrimental? In fact, a well-planned variety may prevent over-supplementation, nutritional imbalances, and the development of food sensitivities. Slow introductions of a variety of foods—even limited options, will encourage better digestion and a healthier immune system.
Myth #6: Premium foods are just higher priced foods.
The old adage – you get what you pay for, is never truer than with pet foods. Nutrition is not only about whether your dogs likes the food, but how bio-available it is and how your dog can utilize it. Quality manufacturers go to great lengths to source better ingredients, cook at low temperature to preserve valuable nutrients, and use specially designed packaging to preserve the nutrients.
Myth #7: People food is harmful to dogs.
A well-balanced, home-prepared diet using fresh organic ingredients you source yourself are the best diets available—offering you control over recipes, supplementation, and processing. Talk with your veterinarian about recommended recipes and your dog’s nutritional requirements. Consider complementing your dog’s commercial foods with fresh, home-prepared foods to offer the best diets available within your budget concerns.
Myth #8: Diet and lite foods offer better weight management.
Empty calories from additional fiber and select ingredients are the main components added to make many of the lite foods. These ingredients, along with the already heavy burden of excessive carbohydrates, can actually contribute to weight gain, trigger skin and coat disorders, and create food intolerances. Quality meat proteins, balanced fats and minimal simple carbohydrates are key in helping your canine stay slim and trim.
Myth #9: Organic foods make superior diets.
While organic and free-range meats may be superior protein sources, they are often not the primary ingredients in organic pet foods. Because of costs, many dry and canned foods use higher levels of grains to meet nutritional requirements, increasing the carbohydrates in your dog’s diet. Understanding your dog’s nutritional needs AND how to read labels will help you select the best foods.
Myth #10: Raw foods have the highest risk of bacterial contamination.
As an opportunistic carnivore, your dog evolved with a digestive tract that is short, acidic, and hostile to bacteria—designed to process and eliminate food quickly, not allowing much time for bacteria to multiply. While caution should to be taken with dogs with weakened immune systems or in homes with humans with health challenges, precautions in place by leading manufacturers of raw diet pet foods offer safety and peace of mind.
© Terri Grow
Obesity, arthritis, early kidney disease, dental disease, skin disorders and even cancer are just a few of the problems now being associated with the highly processed and excessive levels of carbohydrates in dry food only diets.