Are Grains Bad For Dogs
Theres a lot of debate about whether or not grains should be in your dogs diet. Dogs have no dietary requirement for grains they dont need them in their diet. However, grains certainly wont hurt your dog.
Dogs are not strict carnivores their stomachs have evolved to process many of the foods we eat, like fruits, veggies, and yes- grains!
This actually has something to do with us. Wolves cant digest grains well, but domesticated dogs evolved to digest starches so that they could take advantage of our leftovers.
The problem of course is the amount of grain in your dogs diet. While dogs are not obligate carnivores like cats, most experts agree that a dogs diet should still primarily consist of meat protein.
The issue is not so much the grains themselves, but that grain-inclusive foods tend to have a higher carbohydrate composition with less protein and fat. Ideally, your dogs diet will be high protein, contain a moderate amount of fat, and be low in carbs.
Even grain-free diets are guilty of relying on a higher carbohydrate count than is ideal. Many companies just substitute grains for potatoes, peas, legumes, and tapioca. Dogs dont nutritionally require starch in their diet either, so switching out grains for starch wont necessarily result in a better diet for your dog.
Ultimately, you should be less concerned with grains vs starches decision and instead owners should simply be aiming for a diet that is high in protein and relatively low in carbohydrates.
Wag Wet Canned Dog Food 125/132 Oz
Wag Wet Canned Dog Food 12.5/13.2 oz
- REAL MEAT: Beef broth, beef & chicken are the first three ingredients
- MADE WITH: Carrots & peas with chunks of meat in gravy
- NO ADDED: No added grain No added corn, wheat, or soy No added artificial colors and flavors or chemical preservatives
- MADE IN THE USA: Made in the USA with globally sourced ingredients from trusted suppliers
- TRANSITION GUIDANCE: Gradual transitioning is important to help avoid dietary upsets. Please allow 7-10 days to ease the transition from your dogs current food
- Serve by itself or mixed in with kibble
- If you like Wellness Canned Dog Food, we invite you to try Wag Wet Dog Food
- Contains twelve 13.2oz cans of wet dog food with easy pull can tab Can labels may vary during packaging transition
- Satisfaction Guarantee: Were proud of our products. If you arent satisfied, well refund you for any reason within a year of purchase. 1-877-485-0385
- An Amazon brand
Hills Science Diet Adult 7+ Senior Vitality Chicken Dog Food
Best for Senior Dogs
Top Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Brewers Rice, 3. Yellow Peas, 4. Cracked Pearled Barley, 5. Whole Grain Oats
- Life Stage: Senior
- Suitable for: Small, Medium, Large Breeds
- Caloric content : 363 kcal
- Analysis: Protein 19% | Fat 11% | Fiber 3% | Moisture 10%
As dogs age, their digestive systems begin to become more sensitive.
But with Hills Science Diet Senior Vitality Formula, your senior dog can get its needed energy and fiber while retaining optimal digestive efficiency.
This recipe is made from premium chicken meat and features L-carnitine to promote a lean and muscular body.
The grains in this recipe are rice, barley, oats, and corn. All of them are loaded with fiber and supply tons of carbs to keep your dog active without excess calories. The formula includes Vitamin E and C for immune support, and omega fatty acids provide the healthy oils needed for coat and skin health.
Read Also: Wellness Core Digestive Health Dog Food
Wet Food Toppers And Treats
Our grain free dog food line also includes a number of wet recipes, treats, and toppers in a variety of flavors and textures that are sure to please your pup. Our grain free wet dog food recipes include classic like Grammys Pot Pie and Cowboy Cookout. Treats and toppers offer endless opportunities to give your dog some extra love and can spice up mealtime!
Wellness Complete Health Dry Dog Food
Wellness Complete Health Adult Deboned Chicken and Oatmeal is one of 13 dry recipes included in our review of the Wellness Complete Health product line.
- First 5 ingredients: Deboned chicken, chicken meal, oatmeal, ground barley, peas
- Type: Grain-inclusive
- Other recipes: Senior, puppy, large breed, small breed, whitefish and sweet potato, lamb and barley, turkey and oatmeal and more
- See all 13 available recipes
This Wellness Complete Health formula derives the bulk of its meat protein from chicken and chicken meal. Our dry matter label analysis reveals the product contains 27% protein, 13% fat and 52% estimated carbs creating a fat-to-protein ratio of about 50%.
One of the best grain-inclusive kibbles on the market. Highly recommended.
Sample buyer reviewI have three dogs, all different breeds and sizes. They all love this food it has caused absolutely no stomach issues After discussing this with our awesome Veterinarian she recommended Wellness and our Goldendoodle hasnt had any stomach issues in 5 years. The stomach issues brought us to Wellness, but the quality ingredients kept us loyal.
This Instinct example derives the majority of its animal protein from beef and chicken meal. Our dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 40% protein, 23% fat and 29% estimated carbs which creates a fat-to-protein ratio of about 57%.
With multiple flavor options, Instinct makes an ideal choice for feeding picky eaters. Highly recommended.
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Signs Your Dog Might Have A Food Allergy
Of course, any allergies should be diagnosed by a vet, but here are some signs that your canine companion could have a food allergy.
Rashes or other skin irritations can signify a food allergy.
Dogs with food allergies often suffer from diarrhea and/or vomiting.
Excessive flatulence can be a sign of a food allergy in dogs.
Since a canine food allergy can manifest itself in the form of itchy skin, look for licking, chewing, and self-biting behaviors.
Frequent ear infections can be caused by food allergies.
Even if your dog has a food allergy, it might not be an allergy to grains or gluten. For this reason, its important to have him properly diagnosed.
Beef and dairy are actually much more common allergens for dogs than grains are.
Switching To A New Wet Dog Food
Whether youre switching from dry kibble to wet food or from one wet food brand to another, it is important to make the transition slowly. Switching cold turkey wont give your dog time to adjust to the new food and can lead to digestive problems and an upset stomach.
Slowly transition to the new food over a period of about nine days. Youll want to start with just a small amount of the new food mixed with a greater portion of the old food. Use the following guidelines to help you make the switch:
- Day 1: 20% new food, 80% old food
- Day 2: 30% new food, 70% old food
- Day 3: 40% new food, 60% old food
- Day 4: 50% new food, 50% old food
- Day 5: 60% new food, 40% old food
- Day 6: 70% new food, 30% old food
- Day 7: 80% new food, 20% old food
- Day 8: 90% new food, 10% old food
- Day 9: 100% new food
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Natures Logic Dry Dog Food
Natures Logic Chicken Meal Feast is one of 9 dry recipes included in our review of the Natures Logic product line.
- First 5 ingredients: Chicken meal, millet, chicken fat, pumpkin seed, yeast culture
- Type: With grain
- Other recipes: Rabbit meal formula, beef meal recipe, duck and salmon meal, pork meal, and more flavors
- See all 9 available recipes
This Natures Logic formula derives the greatest share of its meat protein from chicken meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 40% protein, 17% fat and 36% estimated carbs resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 42%.
Natures Logic is one of only a handful of brands that meets AAFCO nutrient guidelines using actual feeding trials. Not only is it made with grain, but its also free of legume-heavy ingredients.
Sample buyer reviewWeve been feeding Natures Logic for about eight months now. The high protein content coupled with no legumes or potatoes won me over. After obsessive research following the DCM scare, I chose Natures Logic as the best kibble option for Carlo. Because its so nutrient-dense, he gets about 2/3 cup every meal. One bag lasts approximately 11-12 weeks, which works out to roughly $6 per week. You cant put a price on your dogs health but if you had to, how can you beat that?
Switching From Pitbull Puppy Food To Adult Food
Typically, pitbulls will reach their final height between 12 and 18 months and should be transitioned from puppy food to adult food during this time. Pitbulls will continue gaining weight until they are 2 or 3 years old, but do not keep them on puppy food that long.
Puppy food is higher in calories and keeping your pitbull on it too long puts him at risk of obesity. Transition your pitbull onto adult food slowly, over the course of several days. Mix the puppy food with it, gradually increasing the amount of adult food and phasing out puppy food.
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Merrick 35302 Pet Food
Merrick 35302 is a potato-free dog food, which is a nice touch, as potatoes are difficult for many dogs to digest. That also lowers the glycemic index of the food, which may be beneficial for overweight dogs.
Our favorite thing about this dog food is the fact that its filled with glucosamine and chondroitin. These are essential for joint health, and they can be helpful for issues like hip dysplasia or back problems.
The kibble is extremely tiny, and may serve as a choking hazard for dogs larger than 15 pounds or so. Its also not particularly appetizing, so you may need to mix it with water or some wet food to convince your pup to chow down.
The protein in Merrick 35302 isnt all that impressive, either. The first ingredient is a natural protein source either chicken or lamb but after that you encounter quite a bit of animal meal. It could be worse, of course, but it also could be a lot better, which is why we cant see fit to rank this dog food any higher than 8th on this list.
- Plenty of chondroitin and glucosamine for joint health
- Small kibble could be choking hazard for larger dogs
- May need to be mixed with water or wet food to get dogs to eat it
- Lots of animal meal on ingredients list
Healthiest Overall: Hills Science Diet Adult Large Breed Dog Dry Food Perfect Digestion
After careful evaluation of various brands, we recommend Hills Science Diet Adult, Large Breed Dog Dry Food Perfect Digestion as the overall healthiest choice. This company combines rigorous testing, research, and feedback from veterinarians to create high-quality dog food for all breeds. It all comes down to the ingredients.
Protein is essential in the diet of a dog. This dry dog food has protein in the form of chicken, barley, rice, and whole-grain oats. Protein builds and maintains strong muscles and healthy tissue.
Another reason why we recommend this particular food as the healthiest option is its prebiotics. These aid in a dogs digestion, so it enjoys all of the nutritious value in this food without stomach upset.
Vitamins C and E along with antioxidants help to make this the healthiest option for an adult, large breed dog. These nutrients support a dogs immune system so it can avoid illness or recover from common ailments more quickly.
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Dog Food Review Criteria
Each food in this list has been evaluated based on the ingredient quality and ingredient safety by DogFoodReviews.com. Its fine to look at how much protein and fat is in a food, but at the end of the day, the food needs to be safe for your dog to eat . So each foods score is an average of the ingredient quality and the ingredient safety.
Here are some of the criteria we look for:
Faqs About Dog Food With Grain
Q: Why should I feed my dog grain?
A: Grain is a great source of protein, vitamins, and minerals for your dog. It can also help nourish their coat and skin, as well as support their overall well-being.
Q: How do I know what type of grain is best for my dog?
A: Each type of grain has its own unique benefits for your dogs health. For example, quinoa is an excellent source of fiber that can promote healthy digestion. Brown rice contains beneficial vitamins and minerals that are important for proper organ function. And oatmeal provides essential antioxidants to keep your pups immune system strong. Ultimately, the best way to determine which grain is best for your dog is by taking their individual health and nutritional needs into account.
Q: Are there any risks associated with feeding my dog grain?
A: While most dogs tolerate grains well, its important to make sure they are eating a high-quality brand that has been specifically formulated for canine nutrition. Avoid giving your dog foods that contain artificial preservatives or added sugar. Additionally, if you notice any signs of GI upset or skin irritation after introducing a new grain into your pups diet, consult with your veterinarian immediately to explore other options. With the right care and attention, though, most dogs can enjoy all the benefits that come along with eating dog food with grain.
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What If My Pitbull Puppy Wont Eat
It is not common for pitbull puppies to refuse food without cause. Their appetites will increase and decrease through growth spurts, but it is concerning when their appetites stop altogether.
If your puppy has refused food in the last 24 hours and you have not recently changed foods on him, it is time to call the vet. There might be an underlying reason to why your puppy is not eating, so it should not be ignored. Call sooner than 24 hours if your puppy seems lethargic or otherwise unwell. Do not put it off.
The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain Chicken Recipe
Another very expensive recipe, this food offers something a little bit different. The ingredients in this recipe are dehydrated rather than cooked. This means that they dont lose any of their nutrients to the cooking process, so this recipe contains even more of the goodness that your dog needs.
This food starts with dehydrated food as its first and only animal-based protein. It is coupled with organic barley and oats, dehydrated potatoes, and peas as its source of carbohydrates. While the recipe then also utilizes a nutrient pack, it also contains a range of dehydrated fruits and vegetables, ensuring that your dog gets most of their vitamins and minerals delivered directly in the way that nature intended.
This recipe is one of the most nutritious things that you can feed your dog however, it is by far the most expensive food on this list. It is an investment in your dogs health. The food is also very high in calories, at around 4,300 calories per kilogram. But thats OK, the price-tag means that you will want to feed it to your dog in moderation.
- High in calories
If you are looking for the best and healthiest possible dry food to fill your dogs bowl, you cant beat this dehydrated recipe from The Honest Kitchen.
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Best Affordable Dry Dog Food: Purina One Smartblend True Instinct Natural With Real Turkey & Venison Adult Dry Dog Food
- Real turkey is the #1 ingredient
- Contains 30% protein content
- Affordable and easy to serve
Purina ONE Smartblend is a healthy option for those on a tighter budget, since it still focuses on having a high level of protein for your dog. The kibble comes in small pieces and contains omega 6 fatty acids for your dogs healthy coat and skin. The ingredients do include wheat, soy and gluten so it might not be the best choice for dogs with sensitivities or intolerances. If youre wanting a simple, healthy, affordable option for your dog, Purina ONE Smartblend might be a good fit.
This kibble also comes in Salmon & Tuna and a Grain-Free Formula with varying prices.
Price Point: $42 for a 36lb bag
5.0 out of 5 stars Turkey & Venison variety reduced sensitive stomach issues for our lab mix
We got a lab mix “pound puppy.” It turned out that she has a “sensitive stomach” a/k/a stinky gas! We were told by the vet to buy a better dog food, and we tried many of the higher priced ones that were 100% grain free, organic, etc. We found that she simply preferred Purina One. We tried all the varieties before finally settling on the Turkey and Venison. The others varieties still gave her gas, but since she has been eating the Turkey and Venison Purina One, she has been essentially gas-free. The kibble is small and thin enough that our old dachshund with bad teeth can eat it too. Highly recommend you give it a try!K. Gifford
Our Favorites Are Taste Of The Wild Dry Dog Food And Purina Beyond Wet Dog Food
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Dogs may develop allergies to any number of common pet food ingredients, including grains like corn and wheat. Grain-free dog food is only necessary if your pet has been diagnosed with an allergy or intolerance to grains via an elimination diet trial. This type of allergy is rare in dogs, says veterinarian Kristin Wuellner, an employee of Hills Pet Nutrition.
In some cases, a grain-free diet may in fact not be appropriate for your specific pet, particularly as the FDA continues to investigate a possible connection between grain-free diets and a heart condition called canine dilated cardiomyopathy. Its always a good idea to consult your veterinarian before making any changes to your dogs diet.
We researched and consulted Dr. Wuellner to find the best grain-free dog foods available.
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