What Can I Add To My Dog’s Food To Boost Their Health
A weakened immune system in your fur baby can open up chances of infections and diseases affecting your dog. That is why keeping your dog’s immune system strong and balanced is a must to help your dog ward off these diseases. You might ask yourself, What can I add to my dogs food to help keep them healthy?
Supplement Dog Kibble With Omega
Most kibble diets dont contain healthful fats. Even if theyre on the ingredient list theyre lost with heating and processing. In fact, processing can produce hydrogenated or trans fats, which can be very dangerous.
Most plant-derived fats provide omega-6 and 9 fatty acids, which are pro-inflammatory. But omega-3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory. And there arent enough omega-3s in kibble. Kibble-fed dogs need to eat more omega-3s to provide a healthy anti-inflammatory balance.
Not surprisingly . fish oil is what most people think of to give omega-3 fatty acids. But fish oil isnt an ideal choice.
What Kind Of Human Foods Can Dogs Eat
We all feed our dogs a little human food from time to time. After all, its hard to resist when those puppy dog eyes are looking up at you at the table or while youre cooking. However, even though we have the best intentions, human food isnt always good for dogs. Human food contains a lot of additives and other ingredients that simply arent good for dogs, so table scraps dont make good treats. Overeating certain human foods can also lead to obesity in dogs.
On the other hand, a lot of owners have taken to feeding their furry companions homemade dog food. There are a number of reasons this can be a good, healthy option for your pet. If youre considering turning human food into healthy homemade food for dogs, its important to understand what dogs can eat and what the best kind of human food is for your dog.
Consider The Form The Food Takes
Next, you should consider the form your dogâs food takes. Are you only serving kibble? While thereâs nothing inherently wrong with dry food , sometimes the nutritional aspects can be lost or diminished in the manufacturing process. And worse, some companies will promote health benefits from their products â like probiotics â that donât really exist.
And while fresh or raw food alternatives are great ways to improve your dogâs overall health and nutrition, the reality is that there are many hurdles to changing our dogsâ diet â from refrigerator space to budget.
Can You Feed Your Dog Too Many Vegetables
Yes, while dogs are omnivores like we are, too many vegetables in the diet could cause gas, bloat and lead to hunger. There are also seeds to consider such as those found in squash and cucumbers which could irritate your dogs GI tract if eaten in excess.
The best approach to take when trying to incorporate healthy snacks is to have a variety of vegetables with and without seeds and of different colors. That way, your veggie treats will be more naturally balanced.
After awhile, your dogs bathroom business will tell you exactly which vegetables they cant digest properly. Simply adjust these vegetables as you learn how your dog handles each vegetable.
Also Check: Is Primal Raw Dog Food Safe
Improving Your Dog’s Health With A Homemade Diet
Balancing the diet is the most important factor. If the meal plan is not balanced, it can ultimately lead to many deficiencies. If there is an imbalance of vitamins or minerals in the diet, dogs can run into health problems quite quickly. Especially in puppies, it can happen in just a few months. This is the main reason that vets are opposed to homemade meals, they are the ones who witness all the deficiencies firsthand.
Fruits Fresh Frozen Canned Or Freeze
Apples should be washed well, but leave the skin on its an antioxidant. Apples have oodles of vitamins A and C. They are an excellent source of fiber, and they crunch. Smear some peanut butter on the slices for added protein. Do not feed your dog the apple seeds because they contain arsenic.
Bananas contain vitamins A and C. They also have phosphorous and potassium, and manganese.
Berries, including blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries, are healthy for dogs. Blueberries are a known antioxidant. Berries contain vitamin A, potassium, and phosphorous.
Melons are an excellent source of fiber. They also contain vitamin A, potassium, and phosphorous.
Pineapple is a tasty frozen or fresh treat. Pineapples contain vitamin A, fiber, potassium, phosphorous, iron, and manganese.
Read Also: Best Food For Dog Allergy
Sardines Or Other Oily Fish
Oily fish like sardines or herring can be a great way to give your dog some extra omega-3 fats. And canned fish are fine for this purpose. Buy skin-on, bone-in fish, packed in water, not oil and preferably without added salt.
DNM RECOMMENDS: Four Leaf Rovers Safe-Sea is a safe, sustainable omega-3 supplement containing green lipped mussel oil and ahiflower oil, plus astaxanthin for a powerful antioxidant boost. Buy Safe-Sea now.
Top With A Boost Of Freeze
Meal toppers are growing in popularity for good reasons. Theyre convenient, minimally processed, and can increase the amount of biologically-appropriated protein. Plus, dogs love them!
Freeze-dried raw foods are an excellent way to add the power of raw to your diet. They often come in chunks that you can pour onto your pups meal. They are high in premium quality animal proteins. Theyre so delectable that many people use them as training treats as well.
Kiwi Kitchens Superfood Boosters are easy to sprinkle on your dogs kibble, and theyre made from pristine New Zealand ingredients, including green-lipped mussels, a nutritional powerhouse.
Also Check: Is Table Food Bad For Dogs
Add Supplements To Your Dogs Diet
Another alternative to helping to provide a happy, healthy life for your pup is building their bowl by adding supplements to their mealtime. Supplements provide essential but often elusive ingredients that donât always make it through the dog food manufacturing process, like probiotics. Or, if they do, the level of those ingredients may not be high enough to be impactful, like glucosamine. These missing ingredients can be key to many core bodily needs, like digestion, nutrient production/absorption, ligament and joint functions, and organ functionality.
Supplements, which come in many forms , have a role in dogsâ nutrition throughout their lives, even though theyâre often considered as only being for senior or illness-prone dogs. Dogs who can also benefit include:
Young dogs building their immune system
Dogs carrying a few extra pounds
Dogs who need a boost to their skin and coat
Active or working dogs
Antioxidants and more
When choosing a supplement, make sure there are high-quality ingredients with as few fillers, additives, and preservatives as possible. We like DIG Labs because they help make providing personalized care and boosted nutrition for our dogs easy with their Pup Sup. You can take a 5-minute health assessment and they will customize a unique super nutrient formula.
Can You Add Warm Water To Dry Dog Food
I would not recommend adding water to the dry dog food because it can soften the food and encourage dental plaque. Hot water will kill the probiotics on the food and should never be used. Also, if you add water and your pet does not eat it all right away, the food can spoil and cause gastrointestinal issues.
Also Check: Purina One Puppy Food Review
Add Fresh Vegetables For Enzymes
One thing you can do is add some fresh veggies to your dogs food. But dont just toss some raw carrots in his bowl. Heres why
Herbivores have a digestive enzyme called cellulase. Cellulase allows a plant-eater to break down cellulose a component of plant cell walls. This helps release other nutrients from the plant material. But carnivores like dogs dont have cellulase. This explains why a chunk of raw carrot usually passes right through your dog in one piece!
Adding fresh vegetables to kibble is a great way to provide your dog with some live enzymes. But first, make them digestible by lightly steaming or mulching/puréeing them.
Or, you can make it even easier. Boost your dogs kibble by adding a digestive enzyme supplement to his bowl. You can add powdered digestive enzymes to processed kibble. Sprinkle the powder onto the food before serving.
Homemade Dog Food Sources
- Meats: chicken, turkey, beef, bison, pork, lamb, venison
- Vegetables: broccoli, cauliflower, carrot, zucchini, summer squash, spinach, kale, collard greens, chard, thawed frozen peas
- Complex carbohydrates: brown rice, wild rice, quinoa, lentils, oatmeal, sweet potatoes, winter squash
Recommended Serving Amounts
- 2 pounds of food per day for a 100-pound dog
- 1 to 1 1/2 pounds of food per day for a 50-pound dog
- 1/2 to 3/4 pound of food per day for a 25-pound dog
- 5 to 6 1/2 ounces of food per day for a 10-pound dog
This information is not intended to replace professional medical advice. Every dog’s dietary needs are different. Please consult with your veterinarian and use personal judgment when applying this information to your own dog’s diet.
Feed Raw Meaty Parts Of Poultry
The bones of young turkey and chicken are soft and pliable enough to be eaten whole, including wings, necks, and backs. Raw bones provide calcium and other minerals in the proper ratios, as well as proteins, fats, and many other valuable nutrients.
Puppies especially benefit from both the added nutrition and the healthy chewing outlet. A chewing puppy is a happy puppy! Start by trying our ROAR ground chicken backs and legs, whole and ground turkey necks.
Give Your Dog The Proper Nutrition
Dont wait until your dog starts developing joint problems to get them on the right track. Make sure their primary diet always covers their nutritional profile needs. Then, you can offer extra beneficial goodies at meal and snack time. Since different dogs vary in size and energy levels, there is no one-size-fits-all menu, so vary your portions according to your dogs size.
You should select a high-quality dry kibble or wet food with all the good stuffand without harmful fillers or artificial preservatives. Dont be afraid to do your research or ask your vet for recommendations on diet options. Each breed might require certain commercial foods over others.
Also Check: Where To Buy Pedigree Dog Food
Five Things To Add To Dog Food For Dry Skin
So, lets get to the heart of the matter and give you five ingredients that you can add to your dogs food.
All of these add ons are easy to get hold of, reasonably priced and easy and quick to use.
The most common of these is olive oil. Olive oil is high in antioxidants, especially vitamin E, and can simply be added to your pets daily meal. Add about a teaspoon for a dog of around 30 to 40 pounds, and a tablespoon for dogs in the 90 pound range.
Coconut oil is yet another favorite additive to enhance skin condition, but should be used with more caution. Start with a small amount, gradually building up to the amount recommended by your vet.
Apple Cider Vinegar
This can be used, both internally and topically, to treat your pets dry skin. Taken as a dietary supplement, apple cider vinegar acts as a natural acidifier and may increase blood flow to the skin.
Used in the skin, it can help stunt the growth of harmful organisms which may contribute to the condition.
Yoghurt is also a moisturizer which, taken orally, can help good bacteria colonize the skin, overcoming the effects of other organisms which may cause dryness and inflammation.
Use a teaspoon a day for a small dog, up to a tablespoon for larger pets.
Liquid Fish Oil
You could also try adding liquid fish oil to your dogs food, as this is rich in omega-3 fatty acids so important to health.
And there you have it.
Five quick fixes to add to food that should help fix dry skin.
How Do I Read A Dog Food Label
There are a few things one has to keep in mind before reading a food label:
- Protein Source. It is best to figure out if the protein in your dogs food comes from a known source. If the first ingredient in your dogs food is either chicken, lamb, beef as a whole, then the brand can be trusted. Be wary of ingredients that mention meat by-products as they could lead to health problems in some dogs.
- Additional Ingredients. These include vegetables, fruits, and grains. While these ingredients are crucial to balance your dogs meal, sometimes there can be allergic reactions that might cause health complications.
- Preservative. Your dogs food should not contain any artificial preservative that could cause health problems in some dogs. These are usually added to increase the shelf life of the product. If you see dog food with an unusually long shelf life, you might want to look up the preservative the brand is using.
Also Check: Low Fat Dog Food Pancreatitis
Changing Puppy Food Brands First
Make sure you know exactly what the breeder fed your Pitbull puppy when you bring her home.
Continue to give your dog the same item for at least two weeks.
This will give your puppy time to adjust to her new surroundings.
Then, when its time to switch to your new puppy chow, take it slowly.
On the first day, combine 10% of the new food with 90% of the old food.
Then, over the period of at least a week, gradually increase the new food.
Your dogs stomach will not be upset as a result of the gradual meal adjustment.
You can also help your Pitbull puppys digestion by introducing probiotics to his food once a day.
Request a recommendation from your veterinarian.
When People Find Out We Make Our Own Dog Food At Home They Always Ask Us What About A Raw Diet So Lets Get That Out Of The Way First
There are LOTS of thoughts and theories on feeding your dog a raw diet especially a dog that is living with kidney disease. Our vet however, was personally opposed to feeding a raw diet due to the fact that dogs, just like us, are very susceptible to food poisoning. Besides that, a raw diet can be tricky to get just right! You run the risk of giving your dog a horrible belly ache by mixing a raw diet with cooked treats, so if you decided to go raw it is important to have both raw meals and raw treats planned for your pup at all times. NO MIXING the two! Since raw and cooked foods digest at different rates any combination of the two can wreak serious havoc on your pups gut which can lead to some pretty unpleasant situations for you if you get my drift.
Also Check: Best Puppy Food For Corgis
Why Add A Topper
There are two reasons to add a topper to dry dog food, and knowing why youre adding a topper can help you select an appropriate topping. The first reason is your dogs health, and the second is his preferences.
Almost all dog food toppers serve both these functions to different extents, but the fact remains that different toppings are appropriate for making dry dog food more nutritious and appealing.
Lets suppose your dog is bored of kibble. You can add dog treats as the primary topper, enticing him to eat his food. However, dog treats arent exactly a healthy addition unless, of course, you choose organic treats. But these can be pretty expensive.
On the other hand, your vet might recommend adding a liquid supplement cocktail as a topper, such as salmon oil and/or a paste probiotic. It might not be as appealing as a bunch of treats, but it would be pretty healthy.
Both nutritional and delicious additives can be used as toppers. Knowing what to mix with dry dog food will help you pick the right topper.
Healthiest Human Foods For Dogs
We all know the old saying, The way to your dogs heart is through her stomach. Well maybe the old saying doesnt exactly go like this, but we sometimes undoubtedly love sharing snacks with our four-legged friends. While we love making our pups happy by showering them with treats, do remember that some foods are safe for humans to eat but may be toxic and potentially deadly for dogs. On the other hand, many human foods are perfectly safe and even healthy for dogs to eat as an occasional treat.
Check out 12 of the healthiest human foods you can enjoy with your dog!
Recommended Reading: Hills K D Dog Food
What Else Can You Mix With Dry Dog Food
If you have no idea of what to mix with dry dog food, then here you have some excellent examples
In addition, avoid mixing dog food brands, because you can create deficiencies and excesses of certain nutrients and disrupt the mineral composition and balance of the food. Being that, stick to only one brand and one kind of dry food.
How To Supplement Dog Food To Help Digestion
Have you ever put pineapple juice or marinade on meat and noticed the bubbling? The principle behind marinating is that certain foods can digest other fresh foods. Those are digestive enzymes at work. The enzymes in fresh foods can ease the digestive process and help your dog absorb more nutrients.
Some kibble may have added enzymes. You can usually recognize an enzyme by words that end in ase on the ingredient panel. Lipase breaks down lipids or fats. Amylase breaks down starches. Protease breaks down proteins into smaller amino acids. These are only a few of many enzymes. But these enzymes may not survive high-heat processing. So its best to add enzymes in a different way.
Also Check: Who Makes Wellness Dog Food