Best Dog Food: How to Pick Healthy Dog Food Ingredients

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Even if yRead Ingredients Carefully- best dog foodou think you’ve carefully selected the best dog food for your dog you should think again and go back to the list of ingredients in your dog’s food and treats to review them and ensure that you aren’t giving your dog daily doses of toxic chemicals that are cleverly disguised as healthy food by the manufacturers of prepared dog food sold in your local pet supply stores where you shop.

What I’ve discovered is that dog parents need to thoroughly understand two things:

  1. How to read the list of ingredients in dog foods and
  2. The ingredients which are biologically appropriate for your breed and age of your dog.

Always check with your vet about what’s best for your dog’s diet.

The best dog food contains protein, veggies, fruit and fat in the correct balance with moisture included so your dog gets all the nutrients instead of getting filler and carbohydrates that can lead to weight gain and other undesirable health problems that will cost you much more money than the high quality food your dog needs to thrive and not just survive.  The rule of thumb is that your dog’s food should be 70% water which cannot occur with dry dog food.

I’ve written about the 11 harmful ingredients you should avoid in dog food, so here’s the most important facts about healthy ingredients in your dog’s diet.

How to Pick the Best Dog Food with the Healthiest Ingredients

  • The First Ingredient: Dog food labels must list the ingredients in order of weight.  This means that there’s more of the first ingredient in the bag or can of dog food than any other item on the label.  You want to see a protein like “deboned chicken” at the top of the list rather than “ground yellow corn.”  *Note: The word “meat” is not the same as “chicken”.  Look for the actual name of the protein and not a generic term.
  • List of Ingredients: 80% of the dry dog food formula is in the top 10 ingredients.  In your search for the best dog food you can do some comparison shopping and you will see the differences now that you know what to look for.  Often, the lower quality ingredients are at the bottom but if you group them together, they could outweigh the first ingredient.
  • Raw Foods: If you can find an upscale store that sells frozen raw foods that are nutritionally balanced with protein, veggies and fat made in the USA you have found a winner.
  • Canned Food: Water dense biologically appropriate protein, veggies, fruit and whole grains is a great choice of dog food if you don’t want to serve your dog raw foods.  To make sure you have the best dog food in a can, review and compare the ingredients carefully.
  • Dehydrated Raw Foods: This is an excellent way to go if you have a dog that is recovering from an illness because you can add water to help with gastrointestinal issues to help ease stomach upset.
  • Dry Foods: The first 6 ingredients must be whole foods which contain moisture. Dehydration in dogs can lead to health issues related to your dog’s kidneys, liver and metabolic disorders costing you more money for healthcare and creating a reduced quality of life for your dog.

Are You Feeding Your Dog the Best Dog Food? -best dog food

The guidelines I’ve given you above point out that protein and moisture are the most important ingredients in the best dog food for your dog’s health especially as your dog ages.  Take time to ask questions about the ingredients in your dog’s food and expect to get the best health strategies from Dog Health News™.

Hope you took some great value out of this post today! I’d love to hear your feedback, so make sure you leave a comment with your thoughts or questions. Also, you can click on the social media links below to share this article… Thank you!

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  1. Knowing the ingredients in the foods we feed our pets is one of the most important jobs in being a pet owner! I support a RAW diet, but more importantly, I support KNOWLEDGE.
    Quality Dog Food recently posted..raw dog food 101My Profile

    • Thank you to Quality Dog Food for making this valuable point about knowledge regarding the ingredients in your dog’s food. We want to be the number one provider of news and information let us know if we can help out in any other areas. Also want to wish you good luck with your new product and I wish I had been at the opening.

  2. Looking for the best commercialized dog food is a waste of time because whatever the label says about its contents, we cannot deny that these products are synthetic and are imbued with chemicals that can harm our pets. What I suggest is more effective – “cook your own dog food.” By cooking home made dog food, you will get more nutrients and vitamins than what commercialized dog food offers. All you need to do is to identify the ingredients that will offer the essential vitamins needed by your dog and include it into your recipe and you will create a good diet for your dog. That is free from fillers, chemicals and preservatives.
    Gary Alan recently posted..Hello world!My Profile

  3. Hi Roberta,

    This is my first visit to your site. It’s so great that you’re an evangelist for dog health and educating people.

    Sadly, people don’t know what’s in their dog’s food, not because they don’t care but because no one tells them. Especially not those secretive dog food manufacturers. And when you said that grouping the lower quality ingredients together they can outweigh the quality ones, I could not have explained it better myself! Spot on!

    I transitioned to raw about 3 years ago due to my GSD’s having terrible health issues. I’ve never looked back and neither have they. I’m pleased you included raw food in your article!

    Thanks for what you’re doing here, it’s fantastic.

    Rosemary recently posted..The Best Vacuum Cleaner for German Shepherd HairMy Profile

    • Hi Rosemary….
      Thank you so much for your comments related to dog food and healthy ingredients. As I further my research, I’m discovering that less is better for our dog’s health. Raw and homemade is the way to go and in the long run it will save you money and keep your dog out of your vet’s office because she’s healthier… that’s what saves you money and your dog suffers less. Stay tuned for a new book coming out soon to help you keep your dog healthy from Dog Health News. Much thanks for your kind words and support. Looks like you have ideas for German Shepherds too… love to hear more. I had a Golden Retriever and I do understand shedding… 24/7… Not sure where all that fur comes from. Take care, Roberta

  4. Chang nguyen says:

    My dog refuses to eat vegetables. How to add enough nutrients for it?

    • Dear Chang,
      It’s best to work with your vet to find the right nutrients for your dog. You may be able to shred a few vegetables and get them into your dog’s regular food. Thank you for taking time to ask your question. Dog Health News.

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