See the difference healthy dog food can make for your Cocker Spaniel; a shining coat, sparkling eyes and a cold wet nose! Learn how a good-quality diet can improve your pet's health and well-being and put
a zing back into his step!
Like children, many behavioral problems can often be explained by a poor diet.
If you have a Cocker Spaniel with behavioral problems, or he's hyperactive, improving his diet will not only help to grow strong bones and teeth, his coat shine and his eyes sparkle, but it could also improve his behavior.
That's what I call a 'win-win' situation, don't you agree? What have you got to lose?
Feeding your pet organic dog food, which is farmed in a responsible way and doesn't contain artificial chemicals or preservatives is an excellent example how we can improve our pet's diet.
The terms organic and natural are often misused interchangeably, but they're not quite the same thing - natural dog food isn't necessarily organic, but it's still the same high quality.
A healthy dog food diet can help to prevent food allergies or even eliminate them altogether.
It's best to check the manufacturer's ingredients labels to understand exactly what's in the food we give our pets.
Stay away from brands where the main ingredients are listed as 'fillers'
such as wheat or corn, as they may not contain enough quality nutrition for your
Cocker Spaniel's diet.
Instead look for packaging that lists meat or protein as the main ingredient.
The same thing applies if the food contains soy, gluten, added sugar or sweeteners, added salt, artificial colorings, additives or by-products - leave it on the supermarket shelf!
Not only can fillers and additives be difficult for your Cocker to digest and over the long-term be harmful, they're often the cause of food allergies in our pets.
If your dog is an allergy sufferer you can now buy many specially formulated hypo allergenic dog foods in supermarkets and pet stores.
If you prefer, you could feed your Cocker a diet of raw meats and vegetables (no cereals) to help avoid allergies.
Although a raw dog food diet can be a little more time-consuming to prepare than other diets, as well as being a little more expensive, the benefits will be quickly visible in your Cocker's improved appearance and he's less likely to suffer allergies.
Another benefit of a raw food diet is that your pet is less likely to become overweight eating a simple diet of raw meat and vegetables.
Why not treat your pet to a couple of raw dog food recipes and just watch that little tail wag!
If your Cocker Spaniel has health problems, your vet may suggest trying a specially prepared prescription diet to help cure a specific problem, and the good news is that they're now widely available (and cheaper) at most at good pet stores.
Although vegetables are very healthy, feeding your dog a vegetarian diet (no meat at all) is often controversial, and thought by some to cause ill health.
There are, however, many vegetarian owners who choose to feed their pets a vegetarian diet, and whose Cocker's appear to thrive on it - but take care, it's not suited to all dogs.
If you're considering changing your pet's diet over to vegetarian, I recommend you have a chat with your vet first.
The word 'holistic' in holistic dog food relates to taking care of the entire body as a whole and one of the ways we can do this is by feeding our Cockers good quality ingredients.
Holistic food is a healthy dog food that will 'feed'
the entire body, from the tip of his cold wet nose to the end of his
little waggy tail!
You may like the idea of feeding your Cocker Spaniel home made dog food and there are many owners that make all their pet's meals from scratch.
They can be made in batches of three or four meals and kept in the fridge until they're needed, but of course they could be frozen too.
And it needn't be time-consuming, especially when you're preparing batches of meals in advance, and it feels good to make your pet's meals.
I like to keep a watchful eye on my Cocker's diet and I often cook rice for Max (sometimes in a little chicken stock) and chop in any leftover vegetables and meat.
I try to keep the proportions to 25% meat and 50% vegetables and 25% rice, although I should probably drop the protein a little because he's been castrated and he's 7 years old this year.
I always make sure
his diet is varied to be certain he gets all the nutrition his little body needs, and I love watching him eat what I've cooked for him!
If you'd like to try a bit of home cooking for your Cocker Spaniel you'll find a few great home made recipes here!
While we're on the subject of healthy dog food, I thought I'd mention food aggression.
Puppies and dogs often develop a condition known as food aggression and become quite anxious and aggressive when anyone (or another dog) hangs around their food bowl while they're eating.
You certainly won't be able to stroke a dog while he's eating if he suffers from this as it can be quite dangerous!
It's not the end of the world though, especially if you know what signs to look for (no sudden surprises) and how to remedy food aggression, it just takes a little bit of patience and a few simple changes at dinner time.
Even if your pet isn't showing any signs of aggression or guarding his food, I recommend you read this article on how to prevent food aggression from happening in the first place.
There's not much more to be said other than feeding your Cocker Spaniel the best quality food you can afford will pay back dividends.
Feed him good quality healthy dog foods, such as lean raw meat, organic, natural or homemade, and it won't be long before you see the difference it can make to his appearance and his well-being!
The saying,'You are what you eat' applies to our pets too, so put the spring back into your dog's step!