You are in charge of your dogs health and well being. You can decide to feed your dog a raw diet. You can also incorporate some organic foods into your dogs diet while still feeding him their kibble meal. Just make sure their kibble contains essential ingredients that are necessary to keep your dog strong and healthy.
1. Research the label & avoid big brands
You can do this by typing each ingredient into Google followed by “bad for dogs” or “good for dogs”
Example: “is choline chloride bad for dogs“.
Commercial dog foods contain many preservatives that can lead to pancreatic cancer and arthritis when fed too often.
Avoid these ingredients at all costs:
- Meat by products
- soy flour
- ground yellow corn
- corn gluten meal
- meat and bone meal
- animal digest
- artificial colors and flavors
- artificial preservatives
Top 10 Worst Dog Foods
- Purina Alpo
- Grreat Choice
- Purina Dog Chow
- Purina Beneful
- Royal Canin
- Science Diet
- Kibbles and Bits
- Ol’ Roy
See #15 for healthiest kibble brands
2. Feed fresh whole foods
Your dogs can easily absorb the nutrients found in whole foods. You can either puree the whole food or feed raw. First, research what vegetables and fruits your dog can safely eat. Fresh vegetables and fruits are full of live enzymes that can improve your dog’s health. They also contain fiber that can help your dog’s digestive system by improving stools and constipation.
Pro Tip: Broccoli stems contain more nutrients than the head.
3. Feed foods high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatories
Feeding whole foods that are high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatories reduce inflammation in your dog and improve health. Inflammation in dogs is serious as it can cause premature aging. You can minimize this by adding whole foods to your dogs diet.
4. Feed Raw Meats
Cooking meat loses its nutritional value. Cooking meat at high temperatures releases carcinogenic chemicals called heterocyclic amines.
Heterocyclic Amines increase the risk of:
- breast cancer
- colon cancer
- lung cancer
- pancreatic cancer
- prostrate cancer
If you are not comfortable feeding your dog raw meat then you can just slightly sear the meat.
5. Feed organic fruits and vegetables
There are a lot of fruits and vegetables that are genetically modified. Be sure to feed organic fruits and vegetables. Genetically modified foods disrupt the DNA by turning genes on and off and changing their levels of expression. GMOs can create unpredicted allergies, toxins, carcinogens, nutrients problems, etc.
Wash non-organic foods in apple cider vinegar if you are on a budget.
Plants produce a chemical called allelochemicals. These chemicals protect it from pesticides penetrating the plant. You can scrub the pesticides off of non-organic foods with apple cider vinegar. Soak the non-organic foods in one part apple cider vinegar and four parts of water.
6. Avoid Gluten
Many commercial pet foods contain gluten in order to preserve shelf life. Gluten is added to pet food to prevent inferior and unstable fats from becoming rancid. Gluten can strain your dogs liver and kidneys. Small corn gluten quantities can be harmful to your dogs organs.
7. Feed organic green lentils
Do not feed your dog any grains. They do not eat them in the wild and some dogs are allergic to it. Green lentils are rich in protein, fiber, iron, magnesium, and lysin.
8. Add organic coconut oil to your dogs diet
Organic coconut oil regulates your dogs weight and it goes straight to the liver to convert into energy. The more energy your dog has, the happier your dog is.
Pro Tip: Give your dog foods rich with omega 3: chia seeds, flaxseeds, hemp-seeds, sardines without oil.
9. Balance the portion size
Feed your dog according to his weight. If your dog needs to lose weight, then feed during the day so that your dog can burn more calories. If your dog needs to gain weight, then feed him closer to bedtime so that your dog doesn’t burn too many calories.
Read our dog feeding guide: How much should you feed your dog?
10. Avoid commercial treats
It’s healthier for you dog if he eats fresh organic treats like carrots, instead of commercial treats that contain harmful ingredients which can make your dog overweight.
11. Use organic foods or bones to clean teeth
Commercial products that clean and freshen your dogs breath contain unhealthy ingredients that pose problems to your dogs health.
- Gnawing and chewing on raw bones can keep your dogs teeth white.
- Give your dog carrots and zucchini to clean and freshen breath.
- Remove plaque by adding melted organic coconut oil to vegetables and place them in the freezer for five minutes.
- Have your dog lick the coconut oil off a bowl for 20 seconds after every meal to remove bad breath.
12. Give your dog purified water
Tap water contains harmful chemicals that can cause problems to your dog’s health and well being.
13. Wash your dogs bowls daily
Keep water bowls clean at all times. Bacteria can grow on water bowls which can disrupt your dog’s health. If your dog is allergic to commercial cleaning products, wash the bowls with vinegar to disinfect.
14. Take control
You are the pack leader and the person that knows your dog the best. Adjust your dog’s diet and exercise to maintain an optimized health and well being.
15. Healthiest kibble for your dog
- Acana Regionals
- Earthborn Holistic
- Nature’s Variety
- Taste of the Wild
- Wellness Core
- Merrick Backcountry