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We love our dogs and we want them to live long, happy lives. So we take great care to make sure we feed our dogs the best dog food available.
One of the best ways to keep your dog healthy is to feed them a holistic dog food.
However, there are so many brands of holistic dog foods now available it can be overwhelming to know which food is right for your dog. So we have put together a simple guide to help you make the best choice for your dog.
What Does Holistic Mean?
“Holistic” is a term you hear a lot in the alternative medicine world, so it can be a little confusing to understand how it applies to dog food. A holistic approach to health focuses on the overall health and well being of an individual. Unlike traditional medicine that targets specific ailments, holistic health is about cultivating a lifestyle that promotes the best health possible. This lifestyle includes things like cultivating happiness, getting plenty of exercise, and most importantly, eating a nutritious, balanced diet.
What Is Holistic Dog Food?
Holistic dog food follows the basic principles of holistic health, so it is made with the total health of your dog in mind. Thus, holistic dog food is made with only natural and organic products to ensure the highest quality. Holistic dog foods do not use byproducts or heavily processed foods that degrade the nutritional value of the food. Since the nutritional value is the primary focus, holistic dog food is also fortified with vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to optimize your dog’s health. Holistic dog food is also designed for the specific health needs of your dog depending on breed, lifestyle, and age.
What Is The DIfference Between “Holistic” And “Healthy”?
Holistic dog food is different from dog foods labeled healthy. Healthy dog foods are often organic or use only natural ingredients, and though those are good things for your dog, they do not offer the complete nutritional profile need for optimal health. Healthy dog foods can really range in the nutritional value they provide, so you can’t be sure that you are getting the best food for your dog. Holistic dog foods on the other hand provides nutrients for everything from heart health to clean teeth and a shiny coat in one package. Holistic dog food gives your dog everything it needs to live a healthy, happy life.
How To Choose A Holistic Dog Food
Now unlike organic dog foods, holistic dog foods are not regulated by anyone. So it is important to really understand what to look for when choosing a holistic dog food. The most important thing you can do is learn how to read a dog food label. Dog food labels are very different than the labels we use on our food. Dog food labels typically contain three sections. The first, the guaranteed analysis which contains the overall nutritional profile of the dog food. The second, the ingredient list is a list of ingredients in the food ordered by quantity. The third is the feeding instructions which are the guidelines for feeding based on the size of the dog. There are specific things to look for in each section that will help you pick the best holistic dog food.
In the guaranteed analysis, the protein, fat, fiber, and moisture will all be listed. You definitely want to look for a good balance of these things like you would on any other food. On holistic food labels you want to pay attention specifically to the nutritional content labeled underneath these. You want to make sure the food contains vitamins like A, C, and E. You also want to look for minerals like phosphorous, calcium, and taurine. Nutrients like these should always be present in holistic dog food.
In the ingredient list you want to look for meats like chicken, fish, or lamb. Make sure there are no by-products or natural meat flavors otherwise it is not a holistic dog food. Some holistic dog foods will be grain free, while others will only include whole grains like oats or brown rice. Holistic dog foods will also contain vegetables and fruits to increase the nutritional variety. The best thing to think about is what healthy foods would you consume to improve your health and then look for those on the ingredients list.
Finally, in the feeding instructions list, you want to make sure that there are instructions beyond just the weight of your dog. Holistic feeding instructions should include things like nursing dogs or puppies, and also how to transition your dog off their old food onto the new food.
A final thing to keep in mind when reading the nutritional guidelines is to know about what nutrients your dog needs depending on breed, lifestyle, and age. These are things your veterinarian can advise you on but you can also do a little online research as well. If you look for these things in the nutritional guidelines, you can pick the best holistic food for you dog.
Holistic Dog Food Is A Great Choice
Holistic dog foods are readily available at any pet store and are made by a variety of well known, trusted companies. So regardless of what brand you ultimately choose for your dog, a holistic dog food is a great choice for your pet. Holistic dog foods go beyond healthy, natural, and organic options, by providing a complete picture for your dog’s health.