Angela T. Roberts!
Angela explains the importance of canine nutrition...
I consider “Nutrition” to be the most important chapter in my book, Raising Dogs With Common Sense. First, I encourage you to follow the advice and instruction of your trusted veterinarian. Some dogs require specific diets due to certain illnesses or peculiarities associated with their breed. While I am a bully-breed fan, I love all dog breeds, and I have done much research into the ingredients that seem to work best for most breeds.
Nutrition Rule: READ THE INGREDIENT LIST of anything you intend to feed your dog (dry kibble, can food and even treats). If you find corn, wheat or glutens of any type in the ingredient list, please search for a better product. Dogs are unable to digest corn and corn glutens; therefore, corn = filler = more poop in the yard. Wheat and wheat glutens convert to sugar in the body, and cause yeast to form on the dog’s skin. Yeast can also cause stinky ears and “eye boogers.” The wrong ingredients have potential to irritate skin and coat. Gluten is a sticky protein that can build up in the body and blood stream, causing allergies and other health problems. I believe in prevention, so I do not allow “bad” ingredients in my dogs’ nutrition. In my 20+ years of raising dogs and experimenting with various canine formulas (I even cooked for my dogs at one point!), I discovered that I saved money by spending more on the best foods. My dogs actually eat less because I provide them with grain-free, meat-&-sweet- potato-based dry kibble. Please see my website for preferred brands, etc. Remember, in the wild, dogs are carnivores (predominantly meat eaters).
Sure, I supplement my dogs’ diet now and then with meat and dark greens from our meals. I also throw a handful of fish oil gel caps into the yard each morning, as fish oil is excellent for humans AND dogs (more info on supplements in my book). The ONLY “treat” I purchase is meat jerky – 100% meat, no fillers. I break the strips into tiny pieces to make them go further, for training purposes.
I own five dogs that enjoy running our fenced-in farm. None of them are over-eaters even though they have an automatic feeder containing 100% digestible, grain-free food. My senior dog (“Cindy,” age 8) has a few health problems and she might be a tad overweight; but she still has loads of energy once she gets going in the mornings. Her skin and coat are beautiful, and she has clear eyes. My other four range from ages 7 to 18 months, and they fall into the criteria of what I feel a young, healthy dog should possess: excellent muscle tone, plenty of energy, beautiful coats, healthy skin, great temperaments, wagging tails, clear eyes, and clean teeth!
We’ll talk more on NUTRITION in my next article.
Angela Thompson Roberts, Author
RAISING DOGS WITH COMMON SENSE