Daily, well-intentioned users of various Facebook forums will ask other well-intentioned users what they ought to feed their puppy. Then, members who are not veterinarians, breeders, or who have even read the contents of their own dog's food will advise prospective dog owners on what food to buy, typically based on what their dog "likes." Inevitably, more people will join in to express their disapproval of the decision to feed kibble in the first place, and by the time the discussion is over, I expect many group members will regret asking the question because they received more than 50 unhelpful responses.
Please keep in mind that we are NOT veterinarians; however, we are very careful about what we feed our dogs. We converse with other breeders. We examine labels. We talk with our vets. We research dog food. We also don't judge other people's feeding choices as long as they do all they can to provide for their dogs. Every dog, every owner, and every breed is unique.
Owners are advised to look into each of the following possibilities when deciding what to feed their new pet:
1. RAW FEEDING - Raw feeding is a divisive subject. Those who support raw feeding feel anything less is unacceptable. While we recognize the advantages of raw feeding, we also acknowledge that it may not be a feasible option for every pet owner.
If seriously interested in raw feeding, we advise you to contact Dr. Judy Morgan to learn more, particularly for breeds related to Cavaliers. Here you can check her recipe for puppy loaf, a delicious introduction to feeding raw. The local specialized pet stores also offer raw options including brands we trust such as Answers, Primal Raw, and Instincts Raw, All of these are balanced and convenient raw options we have used to feed our dogs. These raw options are highly recommended and most dogs find them palatable and easy to digest.
2. HOME COOKED - Many new pet owners are unclear about the distinction betweenraw and "home-cooked," This term simply defines those who make their dog's food at home using items such as lean meats, veggies, and carbs, and "raw feeding," which is based on foods that are not prepared. It's simple to get this wrong. For instance, the puppy loaf that we discussed earlier, which can be eaten raw or cooked, would fit into both categories. However, preparing meals at home can be labor-intensive, expensive, and difficult (to make sure your dog gets all the nutrients needed). Having said that, our dogs adore home-cooked foods, which are particularly excellent for canines with certain dietary requirements or severe allergies. Dogs today also have the fantastic option of receiving "home-cooked" meals that have already been thawed and delivered to you. Our dogs are currently fond of Ollie, which we will cover in more detail in an upcoming post.
3. Kibble - Going back to the initial topic, people frequently wonder what kind of kibble they should give their dogs and it is by far the most popular option. Due to misleading packaging, recalls & low-quality ingredients, kibble has received a terrible reputation in recent years. Having said that, kibble has its place. For instance, we prefer to feed our dogs home-cooked meals & raw meals whenever possible, but we occasionally utilize kibble for training, stuffing Kongs, supplemental feeding during pregnancy, traveling, and handing over puppies to new homes. Here is how we suggest you choose a kibble for your puppy:
2. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Puppy
3. Orijen Puppy
4. Victor Purpose Nutra Pro (Suitable for dogs & puppies)
5. NuLo Freestyle Puppy & Adult Small Breed (Grain Free)
6. Diamond Naturals Small Breed
4. Visit your neighborhood specialty pet store. Yes, they can occasionally be more expensive, but they also offer excellent advice (speak with the owner or a knowledgeable employee) and frequently have free samples of the food available for your dog to taste before committing to a large bag. In order to compete with Amazon, Chewy, and other online retailers, they also offer rewards and loyalty programs that frequently lower the price of their food.
Dog food is ultimately a personal decision dependent on your dog, your schedule, and your money. Don't leave that decision in the hands of strangers who have little or no understanding of any of those things.
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