Food & Nutrition

A healthier alternative for gravy train dog food

You watch your diet carefully and try to make healthy choices about the food that you eat. What about your four-legged friend? What kind of healthier alternatives to gravy train dog food can you get for him?

There are several directions you can take to let your dog eat a better diet, from carefully reviewing the ingredients in commercial dog food, getting specialty foods from other sources or making his meals yourself with fresh ingredients from the grocery store.

Nowadays, dog food companies understand the wishes of pet owners who want to healthy food for their friend, so they have brought to market a variety of diet foods that are considerably superior to the traditional gravy train dog food. You can now buy grain-free food or holistic food in several stores or in online pet stores.

The first thing to look for is a kibble that is made from real meat from antibiotics-free cows, chickens or lambs. Vegetables should optimally be organically grown. Check the label for any preservatives, artificial colors or flavors. Just as they are for humans, these chemical additives are a hazard to the health of your dog.

Healthier foods often cost more up front, but if they keep your dog healthier, you may save money on vet bills. Additionally, since this food contains substantially more valuable ingredients, your dog will in most cases need less of it.

Another choice when trying to give your dog a better diet is to make his meals yourself. This has several advantages, which include:

Balanced nutrition

You know exactly what is going into his dinner.You can control the balance between protein, grain and vitamins to meet your dog’s exact needs.

Before you decide to become your dog’s personal chef, check with your veterinarian so that you clearly understand your dog’s nutritional needs. Also realize that making home-made dog food is time consuming and may require special equipment like blenders and choppers.

Natural food & supplements

Dogs need protein, carbohydrates, fats and vitamins. You can use a variety of meats including chicken, beef, lamb or fish. Of course, you would want to make sure that you get your meat from a good source so you are not adding antibiotics to your own carefully prepared recipes.
Grains can come from rice and many different kind of vegetables are also appropriate for your dog’s food.
Some owners also add natural supplements like fish oil or bone meal, vitamin E and calcium.

Control over ingredients to avoid

There are some vegetables that are not good and sometimes even dangerous for dogs, such as:

  • Avocado can be toxic because of a substance called persin which causes vomiting and diarrhea
  • Grapes or raisins which can cause kidney failure
  • Onions or garlic, which in large amounts can lead to red blood cell damage
  • Milk or milk-based foods because dogs do not have the enzyme required to break down the lactose
  • Raw meat or eggs since they can contain salmonella or e.coli
  • Too much salt should also be avoided.

Whether you get out your chef’s hat and get ready to whip up some gourmet kibble or buy a good, solid natural dog food, you will notice that your dog has more energy and a shinier coat. And when your friend is healthier, you’ll both enjoy longer and happier quality time together!