Purrfect News - March 2018

PLEASE PASS THIS ON TO OTHERS WITH FURRY FRIENDS!

Let’s talk about dog food….

For an instant meal or to moisten the dog food, I use Progresso soup but you can use Chunky, Campbell or other healthy labeled soups as well. You want to watch for large quantity of potatoes, so low or no potatoes, no corn, no high salt and nothing with high carbs or sugars. Chicken and rice, Clam chowder, Steak and veggies, Savory beef barley, just to name a few. You want to watch the fat unless the dog is skinny and needs to put on weight. Since we lose moisture in commercial dog food, I add this over the dog food or you can just give them the soup. Or you can moisten it with broth…. Chicken broth, beef broth, vegetable broth.. (please make sure it is a good brand and doesn’t have sugars added). Heat the broth up a bit and pour over his food, mix well.

Every morning my dogs have scrambled eggs, so I scramble a couple eggs, almond milk, cheese with sometimes sausage or bacon. Do not overcook the eggs, keep them moist. Let it cool before giving it to the dog.

Meats can be added to dog food as well, fish, pasture-raised beef, pasture-raised pork or organic or free-range chicken. Do not buy any meat with hormones, antibiotics, etc. NO chicken nuggets, or processed meats! Lunch meat is loaded with sugars, so watch your labels!

Protein is good and should be the highest they get in their meals. Eggs are 100% protein. So how do you know if your dog is getting enough protein. Check their stools after a few days, it should turn white. Then bravo, you are doing great!! 😊

What should they eat in veggies. Salad…yes salad..best to buy the spring greens/spinach mix. Dandelion greens are great for dogs (they are in the spring mix), beneficial in many ways. Use cottage cheese or Fage’ yogurt (no sugar or flavors) to mix in the salad. Add chicken or meats to the salad. I buy the already made salads in the store, but make sure it has romaine or spring greens, not iceberg lettuce. The salads have bacon, chicken and cheese. I do not use the salad dressings but a small amount is okay, again watch for the sugars.

Now, what kind of dog food should I buy? Read the ingredients carefully! No potatoes, corn, pea starch, too many lentils, tapioca, carrageenan, brown rice (did you know brown rice is excellent health for humans but undigestible for dogs, white rice is better for dogs)

There are many similar ingredients listed on dog food bags, this is called ingredient-splitting:

Deboned chicken, chicken giblets (liver, heart, gizzard), chicken meal, whole green peas, red lentils, pinto beans, deboned turkey, catfish meal, chicken fat, chickpeas, green lentils, whole yellow peas, lentil fiber, chicken cartilage, whole egg, herring oil, natural chicken flavor, turkey cartilage, dried kelp, whole pumpkin, whole butternut squash, kale, spinach, mustard greens, collard greens, turnip greens, carrots, apples, pears, freeze-dried chicken liver, freeze-dried turkey liver, zinc proteinate, mixed tocopherols (preservative), chicory root, turmeric, sarsaparilla root, althea root, rose hips, juniper berries, dried lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried bifidobacterium animalis fermentation product, dried lactobacillus casei fermentation product.

Though this may look like a good dog food, it is not. If you see an instance like above and you put all these lentils and legumes as one ingredient, it would be the number one ingredient. Even though it has deboned chicken first, actually it is high in carbs and less meat because of the over number of lentils and legumes. Also watch for starches: potato starch, tapioca, pea flour and by products or meal. Most commercial dog foods mascaraed as premium dog food, don’t let top brands or veterinarian dog food fool you.

If you don’t see your dog food, I can tell you I checked over a 1000 dog food brands and it didn’t fall in the category for the best dog food. Yes, I researched all the top brands and they had just too much starch or they have china ingredients. The china ingredients are in most of the top brands and cause the most problems in our dogs. I also checked freeze dried and frozen dog food brands.

I always suggested Diamond Naturals to my clients and guess what, they came out to be one of the TOP DOG food again.

My suggestion to feed your dog

Taste of the Wild PREY

Comes in three flavors so rotate flavors every month. Price range $47.99+ for a 25 lb bag.

Merrick Limited Ingredient Chicken

22 lb, Price range $54-$60.00

Canine Caviar

(has a sugar alternative Fructooligosaccharide), 24 lb, Price $63.99-$69.99

Farmina Quinoa

(has sugar alternative Fructooligosaccharide), 26.5 lb, Price $65.00

Farmina Ancestral Grain

26.5 lb, Price $65.99

Recommend for puppy

Diamond Naturals Puppy

40 lb, Price $44.99+

Farmina Ancestral Grain

26.5 lb, Price $65.99 Comes in puppy, small, med and large breed

Can, Frozen, Freeze Dried

Also watch your Frozen or freeze dried raw foods, they are also full of carbs.

I have not found a canned food that is good enough or that is available in our area without PBA in the lining of the cans but did find canned meat in the store that works the best! You can mix this in with vegetables for a full meal. Walmart carries Keystone Canned Meat which is a full pound of meat and is cheaper than dog food.

Food Tip Summary

Nutritionally speaking, dogs are very close to us, and should also be fed a diet filled with fresh foods that are minimally processed.

"Vegetables, fruits, whole grains, herbs, nuts and seeds contain an abundance of phenolic compounds, terpenoids, sulfur compounds, pigments, and other natural antioxidants that have been associated with protection from and/or treatment of conditions such as cardiovascular disease and cancer."

1. Meat Portion

  1. All dogs should be fed, by volume of the total amount fed each meal, 25-50% meat
  2. The meat can include:
    • Beef
    • Pork
    • Chicken
    • Turkey
    • Fish
  3. The easiest way to start this program is to use ground meats. Take the portion to be fed, mix with water, and cook on the stovetop or in the microwave until the meat is cooked medium (pink) to medium-well. Take this meat portion, including the water, and add it to the rest of the ingredients

2. Commercial Dog Food Portion

  1. Although there are many good home-cooking recipes (which I can provide you), I feel that most owners have little time to routinely feed an entirely home-cooked diet for their dog. Good intentions fall by the wayside, and the diet plan is not followed as it should be. Instead, by feeding some meat, some commercial diet, as I mentioned above, the dog receives an excellent, well-balanced diet. Costs are kept at a minimum, and the time required to prepare the diet is so moderate that even the busiest person will be able to follow this feeding protocol.
  2. The commercial diet, whether dry food or canned, should be of as high a quality as you can afford, and should make up no more than 25-40% of the diet. Please use the suggested commercial dog foods above.

3. The Variety Component

  1. Since grains and other carbohydrates are not necessary, I recommend they be fed sparingly. Their biggest benefit is that they are inexpensive. The favorite grain to use is white rice. Many dogs have digestive problems, which improve when rice is fed.
  2. Vegetables should be routinely added. I recommend:
    • Carrots
    • Broccoli, Kale, Cabbage
    • Peas
    • Leafy greens (Spring greens)
  3. Sweet potatoes, pumpkin, yams, and squashes are all excellent additions to the diet. Sweet potato is especially good, inexpensive, easy to prepare, and readily accepted. Sweet potato should be cooked, and can then be used a portion at a time over a few days. They can be mashed and mixed so well into the diet that all animals will accept them. Carrots often need to be cooked lightly or shredded/chopped finely for digesting or can be fed raw if they actually chew it.
  4. Dairy products can be included sparingly. Our favorites are:
    • Yogurt (Fage’)
    • Cottage Cheese
  5. Eggs are great to feed. Cooked eggs can be fed a little more frequently. 10 eggs are a pound of meat.
  6. Leftovers can be fed as well, as long as they are good food and not excessively fatty or sweet.
  7. Feed with variety, one thing one day, and another thing another day or monthly changed. Don't get caught up in a routine where you are feeding the same things all the time. Variety is just as necessary for your dog as it is for yourself.
  8. In the cold, windy, wet weather and winter months, it is recommended to heat up the food to eat during these times. It is harder for the dog to digest cold food in cold months because it takes more energy for the dog to process cold food to warmth to digest it.

If you have any questions or about a dog food you use, ask, I will provide as much information why it didn’t pass the grade.