When it comes to our dog’s food, we should be feeding them food that is both enjoyable and keeps them healthy. They deserve the best dog food, it really is that simple.
As your dog grows and gets older, their dietary needs change, and, more often than not, their taste buds and preferences do too. Changing your dog’s food is likely to happen several times in their lifetime if not more.
You could be changing your dog’s diet because they are reaching a new life stage, they’re not eating their current food, you’re wanting to improve their diet or try the mixed feeding method, or it might just be that their current food is out of stock.
Though, with many types, variations and so many great brands available, choosing dog food can be a challenge. To help you choose the right dog food for your pooch follow the four-step guide below.
Before we get into it, here are our top tips to keep in mind when you are thinking of changing your dog’s diet:
Only change your dog’s food if you have a good reason to and transition slowly. Changing your dog’s food can upset their stomach, cause stress, and it can take up to 30 days for their body to adjust to the new food. Make sure the dog food contains the five essential nutrients your dogs should be eating . Use the feeding guidelines and labels for each food product to maintain portion control. Different ingredients and concentrations mean the calories vary, and your dog can quickly become overweight. Look for the AAFCO logo. It was created to provide regulatory guidelines and it means that the ingredients and mix of ingredients will be exactly what is on the bag label.
Our 4 step guide for choosing the right dog food.
1. Consider premium dog food.
The first factor to consider when choosing your dog’s food is premium dog food. But, why choose premium dog food? I am sure you have heard the saying we are what we eat, this goes for pets as well.
A premium dog food refers to the products with formulas that target specific life stages, breed size, and/or health concerns, such as joint problems, sensitive stomachs, or have dental support or digestion.
A lot of research and development goes into premium food formulas to ensure you are providing your dog with the very best nutrition and a well-balanced diet which will help keep them happy and healthy for longer. These foods typically are made with higher quality ingredients and protein sources, no artificial dyes, and added antioxidants and vitamins, and are often formulated to exceed AAFCO standards.
Many dog owners think premium dog food is a lot more expensive, so we created this chart to help you understand the cost of buying premium dog food vs buying a ‘cheaper’ non-premium dog food brand. Often referred to as supermarket dog food. This chart is an example of two existing small breed dog food products (Purina Beneful Originals With Beef vs. Eukanuba Small Breed Adult ) and takes into consideration the bag size, price per kg, and overall cost per feed. Feel free to use the chart and swap out the examples for the dog food you are looking to buy.
The cost of buying premium dog food vs buying a ‘cheaper’ or ‘supermarket’ dog food.
Small Breed Dog (10kg) Supermarket Dog Food Premium Dog Food Bag Weight 2.86kg 7.5kg Price $27 $88.99 Price per kg $9.44/kg $11.87/kg Weight per feed per day 500g 130g Feeds per bag 5.72 56.82 Cost per feed $4.72 $1.57.
Plus, Pet.co.nz also offers up to 20% off on AutoShip , a service you can set up so a regular order automatically arrives on your doorstep when you need it .
2. What is your dog’s weight and age?
The next couple of factors to consider when choosing your dog’s food are your dog’s weight and age.
How much will your dog weigh when they are fully grown? How old is your dog?
Dogs have different needs depending on what age they are and what they weigh, so make sure you select the correct food appropriate for their life stage and size. This will help make sure their diet supplies your dog with all the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals they need to be happy and healthy.
If you don’t know the answer, take into consideration their breed/s. Often the breeder or rescue shelter would have indicated their age and how big they will weigh when fully grown such as small, medium, or large breed.
Then use this guide to understand the variation of dog food you should be feeding your dog.