Are Premium Dog Foods Better For Your Dog?

September 2, 2009

in Cat Health

Premium dog foods are most certainly better than an economy dog food. But it’s sometimes hard to figure out the difference between a premium dog food and the rest. Do you go by price alone? A lot of companies are betting on it. Does it say premium on the bag? What makes a premium dog food premium?

The main difference between premium and economy dog foods is the quality of the ingredients and the amount of actual nutrients digestible by your dog. Ignore any of the fancy wording or delicious looking pictures on the bag of food. Look, instead, at the dog food ingredients first.

Look at the first 2 ingredients to see if you are purchasing a premium dog food. Economy dog foods use a lot of low quality grains and meat by-products. Premium dog foods list an animal meat as the first ingredient.

Grains: Economy dog foods usually have a grain as the first ingredient, premium dog foods will not. Dogs are able to digest some grains well, like rice and oats, but have difficulty with corn and wheat.

Another problem with the type and quality of grains/carbs used by the economy dog foods is that they are common sources of food allergies for dogs. They are also usually the by-products of the grain, not the whole grain itself, and thus has virtually no nutritional value to your dog. The grains/carbs really turn out to be nothing more than a way to make your dog feel full.

Meat by-products are not a top 2 dog food ingredient in premium dog foods. Meat by-products are the slaughtered meat carcass parts that are left over after all the usable meat has been removed – like bones, necks, intestines, etc.

Meat by-products, like grain by-products, just do not have the quality and quantity of nutrients your dog needs. It is used as a cheap substitute for meat, with the dog food companies hoping pet owners don’t really inquire about what a by-product is.

Premium dog foods will have a meat meal or meat as the top ingredient, with a meat meal being the better choice. Many premium dog foods will have 2 or 3 meats/meat meals listed in the top ingredients, thereby giving your dog better protein and nutrients.

Is price an indicator of premium dog foods? You certainly won’t find any ‘cheap’ premium dog foods – quality ingredients cost more money. However, you will find some ‘expensive’ economy dog foods. These dog foods have high prices to make you think you are feeding a premium dog food, when in fact, all you are doing is increasing their profits. Always look at the ingredients list to see what you are paying for.

And now there are more types of dog food, like organic and all-natural. Learn more about the different types of foods available for your dog and how to carefully select the best premium dog foods for your beloved pet at the Healthy Dog Food blog.

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