Natural dog food: you won't find any harmful chemicals or artificial preservatives and processing is kept to an absolute minimum to keep its natural goodness. Discover the benefits of feeding your pet healthy dog food.
Natural pet food is a high quality human-grade food prepared specially for dogs and it can make such a big difference to the way your dog looks and behaves.
This is because it's prepared using the best possible ingredients, derived from plant or animal sources and with a minimum of processing so that your pet's food retains all its natural goodness.
'Natural', in this instance, doesn't automatically mean that its ingredients are organic, but it is sometimes referred to as organic dog food.
Natural or organic pet food doesn't contain artificial chemicals, by-products, added sugar, dairy products, artificial preservatives and colouring, or ingredients that have been genetically modified.
It's highly digestible because the ingredients are of such a good quality. It doesn't contain wheat or other cereals commonly associated with dog food allergies and food intolerance.
We want our Cockers to be healthy, happy Spaniels, but is it worth paying the extra for organic or natural food?
Let's take a look at some of the potential benefits of feeding your dog this type of high quality food:
It's not always easy pinning down the reason for an allergy and sometimes it's a case of trial and error; working through and eliminating each possibility as you go.
If your Cocker Spaniel suffers from allergies and you've tried every product on the market without success, you (and your dog) are probably at your wit's end by now, but don't despair, there is one more thing you might like to try.
Because there are no artificial colours, flavours, or preservatives in natural or organic dog foods, they're less likely to cause food allergies.
Be ready for a pleasant surprise. If you switch your Spaniel onto a natural diet you'll begin to notice a distinct improvement within a couple of weeks.
It's true what they say, 'You are what you eat' and it also applies to dogs too.
The high nutritional quality of unprocessed food
helps to promote a healthy skin, shining eyes and coat and strong bones and
Cheaper, less nutritious dog foods contain many 'fillers' (such as corn and wheat) to make your dog feel full.
Fillers aren't very nutritious and are very difficult for your pet to digest. They can cause constipation and many stomach problems.
The very nature of wholesome or organic food means your pet won't need to eat as much and his pooping will become predictable, more firm and it won't smell so bad either. (Yay!)
While we're on the subject of smells, it can also help to make bad breath a thing of the past too!
And the best part is, natural food is far tastier and much more satisfying.
know that wholesome and nutritious foods play a vital role in boosting
general health but it can also strengthen the immune system making it easier for your pet to fight off viruses, disease and illness.
Your Cocker will have renewed energy and vitality.
I'm sure I don't need to remind you that a fit dog is a healthy dog - both of which can help to maintain a healthy weight.
A dog fed on high quality food is likely to enjoy exercise more and more as his bones and muscles strengthen.
It will become easier for him to exercise (especially if he's been allowed to put on a few extra pounds) and you may also notice that he becomes more playful too.
Just make sure you can keep up with him!
Many dogs get stressed when they're taken to the vets so this is good news!
And who can blame them for feeling nervous? They're inspected, injected, pushed and prodded, and to add to their 'humiliation,' a thermometer is poked up their bottom!
The reason behind fewer trips to the vet is that natural dog food is much healthier for your dog (fewer allergies, fewer skin problems, fewer dental problems because their teeth and bones are strong, etc).
Feeding your pet natural dog food will help to give him a better quality of life and can help to extend his lifespan.
Well, yes and no!
Natural dog foods do cost more because they contain high quality, human grade ingredients, however we've seen that in the long run they can actually work out cheaper than other, less nutritious, dog foods.
Many Cocker owners are happy to fork out a little extra up front because of the associated benefits for their Spaniels...and they know they'll get it back with fewer trips to the vet!
The following may be classed as 'natural', healthy dog foods and perfectly suited to the Cocker Spaniel diet:
Natural dog food can be bought from good pet stores or if you prefer, you could prepare your own at home, however, because all dogs are different and have differing nutritional needs, it's important to check with your vet that you're meeting the nutritional needs of your pet.
Take a look at the ingredients label on the manufacturer's packaging. The ingredients may be listed by percentage but if they're not, you'll often find that the premium ingredients are listed first.
You want to see protein (lamb, beef, fish, or chicken) as the main ingredient. It must be labelled as meat and not meat meal. There is a big difference. Meat meal is not pure meat, it includes hooves, beaks, and other inedible animal parts.
You also want to see a high fruit and vegetable content; carrots, spinach, broccoli, sweet potato, peas, kale, apples, and blueberries.
There should also be omega oils, (preferably 3, 6 and 9 and not animal fats) antioxidants (although you'll also get those from some of the fruit and vegetables) and other vitamin and mineral supplements.
If the food is high in meat by-products, meat meal, corn, wheat or soy, give it a very wide berth. The same applies to artificial colours, preservatives, and flavours.
Understand what makes a nutritional diet and learn how to read pet food labels to be certain that your pet's diet is healthy.
Although natural dog food is usually a little more expensive than normal pet food, it can actually save you money and can often work out cheaper in the long run.
For a start your Spaniel won't eat as much because the food is more nutritional and will satisfy his hunger sooner, so you won't need to feed him so much.
And your dog's increased health and stronger immune system will mean he'll be ill much less often and won't need so many trips to the vet...which can mean drastically reduced medical bills!
Aside from fewer allergies and a healthier skin, a better quality of food will help to improve your Cocker's general appearance: well-defined muscle tone, clear shining eyes, healthy-looking coat, and strong teeth and bones.
A natural dog food diet can help to improve your Cocker's quality of life and can help to ward off degenerative diseases such as cancer and heart disease as well as helping to increase your Cocker's life expectancy.
Now that gets my vote, - don't you agree?
Photo Credits: Natural Dog Food
1. Robert and Pat Rodgers at https://flickr.com/photos/kasilof/8955110928