Just like we care about maintaining our balanced diet, we want to ensure our pups are eating the food they need to live long, healthy lives. To do this, it’s important to understand what makes a great dog food. Our Freshpet veterinarian, Dr. Katy Nelson, shares her tips for choosing the best food for your dog.
Talk to your Veterinarian
The first thing you should do when choosing a food for your dog is talk to your veterinarian. Your vet will be knowledgeable about your pup’s target caloric intake and how it is affected by factors such as body condition, lifestyle, life stage, or medical issues that should be taken into consideration. This discussion with your vet will give you a full picture of your dog’s health and help you find the right food for their needs.
Look for “Complete and Balanced”
When looking at dog food packaging, check to make sure that phrase “complete and balanced” is present. This means that the food provides all of the necessary nutrients in the right amounts for the dog’s stage of life. This is also why it’s important to choose life-stage specific food – puppies, dogs, and seniors all have different nutritional requirements.
The use of chemical preservatives in food, even those labeled as “natural”, has a long and controversial history in the pet food industry. There have been numerous claims that high levels of preservatives may lead to a health issues in dogs, ranging from behavior issues and skin disorders to even cancer. The best way to avoid these potential side effects is to choose a fresh food that uses the refrigerator as a “preservative”.
Choose Real Animal Protein, Not Product Meal
Dog food should always be made with real animal protein, not product meal. High-protein, meat-based foods are rich in amino acids and other nutrients that help your dog build lean muscle, burn fat, and promote healthy organ function. Dog food made without these real proteins require supplementation due to poor quality ingredients.
Fortunately, all of our Freshpet recipes hit all of these points. Free from preservatives, complete and balanced recipe, and made only of the freshest ingredients are just some of the standards that we incorporate into our recipes to help your pup live a long and healthy life.