Dog food is essentially food meant for ingestion by canines and other domesticated canines. Humans are considered omnivores which mean they are able to eat both meat and plant material. They do have some small, specific differences, more specifically with dogs. Dogs are actually considered to be carnivores with a primarily carnivorous lean. They also have longer, sharper teeth and longer intestinal tracts which are better suited for the absorption of meat as opposed to of plant material.
The first thing you should know about dog food is that it contains different kinds of calories. It is usually split into three categories: proteins, carbohydrates and fats. There are basically two types of nutrients in dog food, these are fat and carbohydrates. You may notice that there is an equal percentage of each in dog food. While this may seem to be a given, you must learn what each nutrient does for your dog and if these elements are good or not for your dog.
Carbohydrates dog food include such sources as corn, wheat, oats and rice. These foods do contain some energy and some vitamins. However, there are some carbohydrates that are converted into fat when they are ingested by the dog’s body. Therefore, if your dog has a tendency to gain weight, choose low-carb dog food.
Proteins dog food include egg white, fish, poultry and meat. These foods are great sources of protein and are also a rich source of vitamins. However, unlike carbohydrates, these elements are not easily converted into energy and are used instead for storing fat within the body of the dog.
Fat dog food on the other hand contain mainly triglycerides (fats) and is more commonly known as animal fat. While fat is an essential nutrient for the health of humans, it is dangerous to have too much of it in your dog’s diet. Excess fat accumulates in the blood stream, increases the risk of heart disease and can lead to diabetes.
Oxidants are found in many types of dog food and also in human food. This is important to note because oxidants are considered good for the health of the human body in small quantities. However, excessive amounts of oxidants can lead to free radical damage which can weaken the structure of the cells of the body, lead to cancer and even cause dog death. If you notice any changes in your dog’s skin, lungs, eyes, gums or teeth, or in the malaise of your dog, it is an indication that excess oxidants in the dog food are to blame.
Finally, carbohydrates dog food provides the energy the dog needs to roam, play and perform his everyday activities. However, they are not good for a dog’s health if the dog is constantly hungry. Carbohydrates should be introduced slowly to a dog’s diet so that the dog will be able to adjust his blood sugar level accordingly. Watch your dog’s food intake because too much carbohydrate intake can lead to the destruction of muscle tissue and to weakness. Again, this is not something that you want to see in your dog.
The best time to start feeding your dog to commercial dog food is when he is a puppy. From there, introduce him to a variety of dog foods that include quality brands. You’ll soon discover that the best food for your dog is one that suits his temperament, lifestyle and is nutritionally sound. If you don’t think you’ve got a clue as to what would be the best dog food for your pet, talk to the vet. They will be able to assist you in picking out the best food possible for your dog.