Ever Wondered if you could give home food (vegetables and things humans eat) or is it compulsory to give processed dog food only? Well, I have the answer for you right here!
First, let's talk about Home Food
Homemade Dog Food-
Home food is not always healthy because many people don't know about the perfect recipe or what they should give and rather just give whatever they have at home (leftovers) to their dogs. One of the crucial part of dog food should be high quality source of protein in a dog's regular diet. This is a must and your dog's diet should contain a good portion of meat, fish, eggs, meat products, etc daily. Many dog owners fail to provide this to their dog leading to unhealthy diet be it for an adult dog, puppy, or senior.
No spicy food-
I knew people who would give everything they eat to their dog including really spicy stuff. Their dog used to enjoy it. But later on they got to know that their dog had kidney stones and other health issues, and it was because of all the spicy and unhealthy things they fed him.
Dogs can't eat all the things we eat. I only give pale things like roti (nothing to go with it), idli, dosa, or some raw vegetables. But it can also consist of chicken or any kind of meat, eggs, sweet potato, cabbage, carrots, cucumbers, green beans, rice and others. Sometimes picky eaters turn homemade food down. Angel is surely not that kind of dog. She will eat rotten tomatoes to $1000 meal. Like, she will eat anything and everything you give her.
Nowadays, raw meat and meat products are being promoted as best for dogs as it serves their natural diet and appetite. I am, however, not sure how far this helps in overall well being of the animal when compared to homemade cooked food recipe and/or kibble.
It depends on the dog. If your dog has any allergies, it is advised to visit the vet and know about all the things you can give and things which you can't.
One disadvantage is that it takes a lot of time to prepare food for your dog at home. People who don't have so much time, prefer kibble or ready-made dog food. Another disadvantage is that people don't have the knowledge of a healthy diet and some are vegetarians and don't like giving meat to their dog even though it is the primary diet for dogs.
Simple Homemade Dog Food Recipe-
Here's one recipe that I found on the internet:
1. 3 pounds chicken
2. 4 cups rice
3. 2 cups vegetables (no onions or garlic)
4. 6 cups water
1. Place chicken, vegetables, and rice into a large saucepan. Stir in water until the mixture is smooth. Place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.
2. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender and all of the liquid has been absorbed, about 25 minutes. Cool completely before serving; store covered in the refrigerator.
Dog Food (Kibble)-
Meat is necessary-
If you are a vegetarian, it is always better to give your dog ready-made processed dog food or kibble. If you check in google for homemade dog food recipes, we can see that almost all contain meat. This is because dogs used to actually live in the forests and used to hunt to survive. So they were carnivorous. But obviously now humans have domesticated them and now they are omnivorous. My point is that meat is supposed to be a part of their diet. Kibble does contain it. So, if you are a vegetarian, you can opt for kibble so that all the nutrients required by your dog are met by a good quality dog food.
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Also, don't give only one brand. Change them periodically. Fortunately, there are various brands available offline and online in India. This frequent change in pet food brands will compensate for any deficiency that any one brand or type may have. Sometimes when you change the food, dogs tend to fall ill. This does not mean the food is bad. The change should be done slowly, so when we buy a new brand of kibble, we first mix it with the old brand and slowly switch over to the new brand. A few brands are claimed to be grain free, meaning the dog food contains meat and other meat products but no added grains like rice, corn, etc. These are superior and more costly but provide high energy content.
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One disadvantage of kibble is that many dogs finish eating kibble extremely fast and are still hungry. Good quality brands of dog food have kibble that is generally extremely energy rich. This leads to overeating and causes weight gain. Some pet parents also say that they have to clean their dogs' teeth after eating kibble. Very few also tell that kibble is poisonous for dogs as it contains added chemicals to it which is harmful, but there is no proof for that. The quality and ingredients used themselves also is a question of debate. It is better to give only trusted good quality dog food brands and do some research on it before buying it. Some commonly known dog food brands available in India are Pedigree, Pedigree Pro, Royal Canin, Drools, Arden Grange, Hills Science Diet, etc.
Know more about the right dog food you should give your pooch here.
Hope I have helped you in deciding which food you should feed your dear pet and what you can choose to get the best for your pooch. Share this article with your friends who may find it useful too. Happy Feeding!