Dog Food and Treats
You are what you eat... This statement is just as true for our dogs as it is for humans. Our dogs' diet is related to their immune health and also overall brain chemistry. We now understand that gut health is directly related to our bodies producing the correct amount of neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine, norepinephrine, and GABA. These neurotransmitters are responsible for maintaining normal behaviors.
What you feed your dog is more important than ever before. We want to provide you with some resources to help you choose a healthy food for your dogs.
Do you know what is in your dog's food? We recommend looking up your dogs food on the website dogfoodadvisor.com. This website reviews all the dog food brands and gives them a star rating from 1-5 stars. We recommend that you not feed your dog a food that is less than three stars. You should always consult with your veterinarian to make sure that any food you choose will not impact your dogs health.
Dry Dog Food (Kibble)
Dry dog food is the most commonly used type of food used by dog owners. It is convenient and can be easily used for training or put in interactive toys. However, dry dog food does not have the correct water content for dogs. Owners should make sure their dogs have access to water after they eat kibble so they do not become dehydrated. Alternatively owners could add water or bone broth to the dry food to increase the water content.
We love using kibble in some kind of interactive toy/puzzle. Dogs are natural scavengers and love to problem solve to get their meals. check out the full list of interactive toys we recommend here
Raw/Freeze Dried Dog Food
Feeding raw can be a very touchy and controversial topic for some people in the dog community. We believe that raw food can be a great option if you buy a pre-formulated raw dog food. Raw food is generally less processed and has fewer carcinogens than cooked dog food.
It is very important that the dogs receive the correct amounts of vitamins and nutrients for them to maintain their health. Unless you have extensive knowlage about creating your own raw diets, feeding raw can ultimately harm the dog. Feeding things like whole chickens or different body parts alone does not provide a complete balanced diet. Their is an every growing pool of great pre-formulated recipes that you can choose from that provide all the correct nutrition for you right out of the box. For those not comfortable feeding raw freeze dried or slightly cooked food is also a great option.
Our go to dog treat is freeze dried dog food. We love using freeze dried as treats because it is high value, low in calories, and easy to feed. There are lots of different options to choose from so you can alternate between different foods.
What ever treat you use we recommend that it is small and easy to swallow. Large dry and crunchy treats do not work well for training. Ideally the treats should not fill your dog up quickly during training, so small treats are always better. Just like with dog food the first few ingredients in the treat should be meat products. Avoid treats that contain high amounts of processed foods or chemicals. Have a variety of different treats to keep your dog interested. Variety is the spice of life!