Published at Monday, May 20th 2019. by Floretta Frey in Dog Food.
The multinational pet food companies have increased bulk-purchasing power; those that make human food products have a captive market in which to capitalize on their waste products, and pet food divisions have a more reliable capital base and, in many cases, a convenient source of ingredients. The ingredients listed on the label are very much less as to what is actually present in the food – they are tiny; and the items themselves are usually scraps and rejects from processors of human foods-certainly not the whole, fresh ingredients they want you to picture. The labeling of dog food is a confusing discussion to say the least and very much a tell half-truth scenario. Many label rules exist such as; the ”Flavour” Rule that states that a food may be labelled as ”Beef Flavoured Dog Food” even if it does not contain any beef, as long as the flavour is ”sufficiently detectable. When a label reads ”With Real Turkey,” a consumer may assume that he is purchasing quality turkey dog food for his pet. If the label reads ”Beef and Liver for Dogs,” the food must contain a combined amount of beef and liver to total 95%, and again there must be more beef since it is listed first. However, as I outlined above the amounts in there are based on tiny morsels and weight – weight is inclusive of water content too.
How to find out whether your dog's food may be giving him allergies. If you suspect your dog's food may be giving him allergies, you can try feeding him a special diet to determine what is giving him trouble. The diet is composed of food that is scientifically created with very low-molecular-weight proteins. Proteins below a certain molecular weight are thought to be incapable of causing food allergies. You can find this food, in wet and dry formulas, online and at many veterinarians' offices. If after six weeks of feeding this special diet, you find that your dog's allergy symptoms are alleviated, it's safe to assume that his food is the cause of these symptoms. To determine which ingredient is the culprit (usually by-products from meat and poultry sources), reinforce each one into the diet to see if your dog's symptoms recur. Check the ingredients list on your regular dog food label, and add each item-chicken, turkey, corn, bulgur wheat, potato or rice, for example into the special diet one at a time, every three weeks. At each meal, add ten percent of the test food to the bowl, and reduce the special diet by ten percent. Obviously, you won't be testing the chemicals but you can eliminate quite a few ingredients once you have determined which ones caused the allergy. If your dog has no reaction to the added ingredients, the culprit is likely a chemical or by-product- which you will want to eliminate along with corn, wheat, sugar and salt from your dog's diet, indefinitely. Don't be surprised, however, if you find several ingredients cause a reaction. Once you have discovered the allergens, search out high-quality dog foods that do not contain these ingredients. Your dog may find an allergy-free or vet-recommended diet to be bland but a bland diet is better than a miserable dog! As long as he is drinking plenty of water, don't be alarmed of he doesn't take to it right away. When he gets hungry enough, he will venture into the new food for a nibble. Eventually, he will adjust to his new diet especially if you compensate with some yummy, allergy-free treats!
Dogs, being scavengers, also thrive on eggs, berries, fruit and the food that they might find in the preys stomach, such as grains and vegetable matter. But, in saying this, dog's bodies are unable to process whole vegetables. So with pet food companies ads showing plump chickens and whole vegetables it makes you wonder if they really know that much about a dogs nutritional needs and digestive system. Manufacturers are masters at getting a dog to eat something it would normally turn up its nose too. Do you know how they do this? Fat is sprayed directly on the morsels of food, and that is what you and your dog smell and think would taste wonderful – It's just an illusion. And those wonderfully shaped and coloured treats and morsels are not for your dogs benefit, they are for yours. Don't be fooled by pretty shapes and rainbow colours and smiling dogs on the packets – Its emotional marketing at its best. All your dog cares about is the way the food smells, tastes and all you should care about is that it is getting its nutritional needs.
Can your dog be allergic to his food? The most common causes of canine food allergies are caused by these ingredients which include meat-by-products, corn, yeast, sale, sugar, and chemical preservatives. They are often responsible for allergic reactions. Dogs who suffer from food allergies will experience reactions such as itchy skins, weepy eyes, ear infections, flatulence, irritated anal glands (running bottom over carpet), rashes, hot spots, and excessive bodily licking, especially around the feet and belly. Repeated exposure to large quantities of allergens in food can cause long-term chronic illnesses, infections, and behavior problems.
Dogs don't get to choose their own diet we do that for them. Our choice of food for our dog depends on our own education of what is best for our dogs, with our information predominantly gathered from TV commercials by pet food companies and vets who recommend certain products because of product alliance. These TV commercials on dog food fill your screen with plump chickens; fresh vegetables and a selection of grains and all show a happy, healthy dog on the advertisements. They are generally beautiful ads, emotional marketed to YOU. Dog food commercials are not for your dog, they are produced and marketed for you. Dogs are colour blind, so pet food manufacturers only change the colour and texture of dog food to make it look better to YOU, not your dog. I hope that in this article you discover some interesting pieces of information that you can put into play in the way you select the food for your dog and enlighten you as to how the pet food companies cater to you, alone, and not your dog.
Contrary to belief, carbohydrates are not essential for a healthy dog diet. Nor is fiber a required nutrient for dogs. Dogs do not need corn, wheat, barley, oats, brown rice, millet, potatoes, or sweet potatoes. Carbohydrates and fiber are poor substitutes for meat protein and fat. Dogs are carnivores; meat eaters. The best digestible protein sources for a dog are meat, eggs, poultry, and fish; and are far better choices for meat eaters. Carbohydrates from grains, on the other hand, provide energy in the form of sugars. So keep your dog away from grains as much as humanly possible; unless your dog has medical issues that require a lower protein diet. It is always a good idea to consult with your vet about your dog's dietary needs and to get a clean bill of health.
Dog foods containing natural preservative alternative such as Vitamin E does not hold up long. That is why all-natural pet food manufacturers produce smaller quantities so that their products are more likely to stay fresh till sold. Dog food preserved with mixed tocopherols (Vitamin E) generally has a shelf life of about six months, so use this kind of dog food right away. If you are looking for a new food for your dog, visit a pet food store and ask the employee to recommend a food devoid of the ingredients discussed in this article.
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