Nutrition is so important because food is something dogs consume every single day, often multiple times a day. Food provides nutrients to the body, enzymes, energy and everything needed for the body to function properly. Without food, important body functions and processes cannot proceed and an animal cannot survive. Food, like water, is life. On that same note, it is important to understand that quality of food goes hand in hand with quality of life.
If one chooses to feed a very low quality, low protein, high grain diet where the food has been cooked to the point of being empty of nutrient (which results in manufactures having to add tons of vitamins and minerals), this will ultimately reflect in the dog. Cooking food kills living enzymes and nutrients, ultimately providing a dog with "dead" nutrition. Since the cooking process kills and destroys nutrients, vitamins and minerals must be added to the formula so that the dog can survive on the food. To put this in perspective, imagine feeding your dog a bowl of nutrient-less rice mixed with a multivitamin tablet every single meal. That type of diet does not promote health, vitality and well being.
When we provide our dogs with a living, species appropriate diet we can offer them a clean, pure source of food that will leave no toxic residue in the body. A pure, living diet will provide the body with energy and nutrition, nothing more and nothing less, to result in smaller stool and a stronger body. Smaller stool volume means that the food being consumed is being used by the body, and there is no useless junk going in and coming right out of the body. It is worth while to compare the stool of a (poor quality) kibble fed dog to that of a raw fed dog, the difference in volume and smell is quite extreme.
Determining which diet to feed isn't always easy with the wide variety of pet foods available on the market, but my hope is that my list of recommendations which are linked to articles describing those types of diets will help you make the right choice for your furry family members!
First and foremost, a RAW FOOD DIET for dogs is the most species-appropriate diet for our dogs. A raw food diet is as pure and clean as food can come, and is full of living enzymes and nutrients to promote health and longevity.
The next best thing is a raw homemade diet, which involves only lightly cooking the meat and using raw fruit and vegetables along with a raw food supplement to boost nutrition.
A homemade diet for dogs is the next best option, providing either all cooked or half cooked half raw food combined together with a whole food supplement. Fresh, whole food ingredients are used in this type of diet, and much of the nutrition is not killed. Interested in feeding a homemade diet? Check out this free sample recipe!
Last but not least, a whole food high quality grain-free kibble diet can be highly beneficial, especially when switching from a lower quality kibble that contains grains. Make sure you are familiar with bad ingredients found in popular dog foods, and how to select the best kibble for your dog!
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