When Destin joined the Wag Tantrum team we were all so excited! But our joy couldn’t match his when he realized his days of abuse and neglect were behind him. A warm, dry comfy bed, tons of hugs and kisses from his new family and a steady, healthy diet worked wonders on the special-needs guy (Destin was born deaf).
As animal lovers, we all understand how important it is to provide a safe home for our furry friends. And, by nature we are happy to shower them with love.
But diet is another story. We all want to feed the right food, but its so confusing to know just what that is. Slick advertising by large pet food companies make all kinds of claims. So what is really true?
Animal nutritionists have long suspected that better food for our pets would result in healthier lives. And now the science is backing that up. A 2005 Purdue University study showed that a diet of fresh, leafy green vegetables slowed the development of cancer (bladder) in Scottish Terriers by 90 percent! And dogs that consumed yellow-orange vegetables reduced their cancer risk by 70 percent! (Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association)
A 2019 study by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign found that “dog foods formulated with human-grade ingredients are highly digestible.” This is SUPER important because it means that your precious pooch is getting a high proportion of nutrients with every bite of her special diet. According to the study, “foods that use these premium ingredients may improve coat quality or stool volume above and beyond the basic requirements.” Good news all around!
What to feed? First, read those labels before you buy new food for your pooch. But, read carefully. The very first ingredient should be a protein. Protein is the most important nutrient to your dog excluding water. Do not be fooled by protein meal. (chicken meal , beef meal, pork meal) These are not high quality proteins. In 2015, the Enforcement Issues Committee under the Association of Animal Control Feed Officials (AAFCO) found that nearly 50 percent of pet foods on the market are mislabeled. Dry dog food seems to be the worst offender.
Then carefully consider what your dog’s nutritional needs are. There’s a big difference between the 60-pound hunting dog who is bred to run all day and a five-pound poodle who is content to hang around the apartment for hours at a time.
We HIGHLY recommend you then find a fresh food option for your pup. Even if your budget doesn’t allow for you to use it all the time, consider supplementing the kibble with the fresh. Research shows that every little bit counts.
Today, Destin is a happy-go-lucky guy who loves long walks, helping in the Wag Tantrum test kitchen and hanging out with the rest of the Wag Tantrum team. And with his nutritious diet, we’re confident we’ll have him around for a long time to come!