Does your dog suffer from :
- Itchy, flaky skin
- Loose or irregular stools
- Licking paws
- Bad breath
- Anal gland problems
- Excess moulting
- Bad odour
Overall health & wellbeing starts with quality nutrition.
Many of the common ailments that dogs suffer with can be traced back to ingredients in low quality foods and treats and indeed human food or meat on the side.
We have lots of advice to offer to keep your pet in top condition and healthier for longer.
COMPLETE DRY FOOD
WHAT TO AVOID IN A DRY FOOD - Dry complete food is the most convenient and economic way to feed your dog however the quality of dry foods vary immensely. Supermarket or cheap brands usually contain little nutritional value and most contain ingredients that you would avoid giving your canine friend.
The big brands may be popular or a cheap food may seem great value, but what are you actually paying for? 80% of the most popular pet foods in the UK only contain around 4% meat and over 75% low quality grains and cheap oils and fats. Some foods even contain additives and preservatives (some of which are banned from human foods) which can be detrimental to your dogs health.
Read the label - The ingredients list will tell you all you know about the quality of the food. Some companies used an 'open formula' which means as long as an ingredient is listed by it's type, the actual content can change i.e. 'Meat and animal derivatives of which 4% Chicken' on a bag it can actually contain the animal ingredients.
Listings to avoid and why :
Meat and Animal Derivatives - This is from human by-product meat or 'spent' animals such as ex dairy cows or non laying battery hens. A food can often contain lots of different proteins even if it is listed as one 'flavour'.
Cereals - Foods list cereals on the bag instead of a specific cereal so that the actual ingredient may change. Wheat or wheat by-product is used most commonly as it is the cheapest grain to use (we use a lot in human food production therefore there is usually a large amount of surplus). Wheat is a common causer of itchy skin, excess moulting, stomach upsets and loose stools.
Oils & Fats - Fats are very important to a dogs wellbeing as they not only provide energy but keep the skin and coat healthy. The listing on the ingredients in an open manner means that the fat can change all the time, and again it is usually a by-product of the human food industry. Bad fats = bad skin and low energy.
Derivatives of Vegetable Origin - Vegetable fibres or starches derived from by-products of the human food industry. The open formula means that although it may say 'of which 4% are peas', it only has to be a minimum of 4% of peas in the vegetables.
Sugars - We all know adding sugar to human food is bad, then why would sugar need to be added to dog food? Sugar makes human food more attractive to eat and can cause addiction, the same is true with dog food.
EC Permitted Additives and Preservatives - Permitted items by law should be ok for dogs shouldn't they? Not necessarily, they may be permitted to preserve foods, but what they do to a dogs body is not entirely known. Some foods contain additives like 'sunset yellow' which has been linked with child hyperactivity and 'potassium sorbate' which has been linked to cell damage.
REMEMBER THIS ALSO APPLIES TO TREATS
At The Big Pet Store we do not sell any foods or treats with an open formula, we can show you great quality foods and treats that actually cost less per day than supermarket or 'big' brands.
RECOMMENDED FOODS AVAILABLE -
GRAIN FREE - Grain free foods are becoming more and more popular due to the overuse of grains in pet food and the amount of dogs becoming intolerant to them. Grain rich diets may also contribute to bad oral hygiene in dogs and also issues with wind and stomach problems HOWEVER all grain based food are not bad, it is all about the quality of the grain used and actually some grain free foods popular to belief contain more carbohydrates and fat than a grain based food. We recommend :
Ratings from allaboutdogfood.com
GRAIN FREE FOODS
- Kanine Kitchen Grain Free - Great Value Grain Free, (Rated 4.5 out of 5)
- Canagan - Grain Free 60% Meat Based (Rated 4.6 out of 5)
- Orijen 85% Meat Based with Natural Ingredients - Potato Free (Rated 5 out of 5)
- Acana 60% Minimum Meat Ingredients - Potato Free (Rated 4.8 out of 5)
- Lily's Kitchen - Grain Free Recipes Made in the UK (Rated 4.0 out of 5)
- Carnilove - Grain & Potato Free Wild Recipes (Rated 4.9 out of 5)
- Edgard Cooper - Grain Free Puppy (Rated 4.7 out of 5)
- Fish 4 Dogs - Fish Only Dog Food (Rated 3.9 out of 5)
- Berrimans Natures Countryside - Grain Free Berrimans (NO RATING)