Why Choose Grain-Free Dog Food
Feeding your dog a grain-free diet is not actually essential for their health, however many owners still find it preferable to normal dog food.
Their popularity is most likely down to owners trying to replicate their own diets on their dogs, by removing things that they think are bad or have an intolerance to.
Champions of the grain-free diet claim that dogs ancestors did not eat grains in their natural diets and so that they are not a necessary source of nutrition. However, pups have evolved since those dark, doggy days, and domestic hounds are more than capable of digesting such carbohydrates. There’s even evidence to suggest such grains can even aid in the process of digestion!
It is also commonly thought that they are the best choice for canines with food allergies, however, it’s fairly uncommon for a pup to be allergic to grains and it actually occurs in less than 1% of dogs.
Such allergies do exist though, and grain-free food’s focus on containing fewer additives and allergy-inducing ingredients means they are often still a brilliantly healthy option for dogs.
And although they don’t actually help a dog’s digestion by not containing grains, they are often packed with a bounty of other digestive aiding ingredients and healthy gut boosters.
It’s added ingredients, therefore, do have a lot of benefits in terms of helping gut health, joint health or coat repair, but ultimately switching your dog to a grain-free diet is not vital.
The decision to switch is down to you though, and you may find your pup even prefers these meals over any other option.
We do recommend consulting with your vet before switching to a grain-free diet though as your veterinarian will be able to tell you whether it’s the best dietary decision for your dog based on their age, health and other unique factors!
Features To Look Out For
High in Protein
The principal ingredient of almost any dog food is protein as it is easily digested and is obviously the best food group for muscle growth and repair!
You should also be aware that certain animal meats are actually the most common form of dietary allergies, and so it can often be a good idea to go for ‘novel’ rarely used meats which have the best chance of being hypoallergenic for you mutt
Although many owners don’t want to give their dog grains due to allergies or sensitive stomachs, these forms of carbohydrate actually provide plenty of health benefits and do aid in doggy digestion. It’s therefore recommended to choose a grain-free option with a suitable carb substitute, so your pup is still getting plenty of fibre!
Grains also tend to be a good source of fatty acids and so you will often see good-quality grain-free products containing fish oils and linseeds to ensure your dog is still getting their fill!
These encourage the growth of good bacteria in the gut, aiding digestion
Joint Care (Glucosamine & Chondroitin)
These ingredients help boost cartilage in the joints and strengthen bones
Vitamins & Minerals
Grains contain a lot of natural minerals such as iron, magnesium and selenium, so try and make sure your dog food contains vegetables which can do the same job.
Free of artificial ingredients
If you’re going to the trouble of making sure your dog’s food is free from grains, why would you pick a dog food full of artificial and unnatural ingredients?!
The price of dog food can be expensive and is usually the biggest annual cost when it comes to owning a canine. If you own a large dog, this can be a real problem, as your pup will eat a higher quantity at a faster rate! You, therefore, need to be aware of how much your willing to spend and how much your dog eats per day!