Secrets to choosing the best dry dog food

Written by Jennifer Pitts

Buying the best dry dog food can be a mine field. Before recommending, we need to look at how to test what’s a good kibble and understand a few facts.  Firstly, dry dog food has been dehydrated, this means all the moisture has been removed. When dehydrated food enters the intestines, it eventually swells up to its original state.

You will notice when a dog has eaten his/her kibble, they drink huge amounts of water afterwards. This isn’t necessarily a negative fact, but be prepared for your dog to drink more than if he was eating raw. If feeding your dog raw is something of an interest check out ‘What’s all the fuss about raw food for dogs‘.

Testing for the best dry dog food

Follow the two steps below to check if your dogs kibble is the best dry dog food:

1. Put two to three dry grains in a cup of water, leave for two to three hours or more if you wish.
2. Drain the water, and put the grains on a plate, what do you see?

The grains should have swollen or doubled in size. For example, they should look similar to rehydrated tomatoes, but brown. If you touch the swollen food; it should fall apart a little, this is a good sign. The swollen grains should not be spongy, slimy or gummy.

The food shouldn’t contain yellow bits, this is usually maize/corn.

Maize and corn are the same, manufactures use both terms to confuse us. Today, all corn is genetically modified even in organic foods. I have rarely come a across foods that state corn is GMO free.

A few speckles of maize/corn are not too bad, so long as it’s stated on the bag and you know that’s what you’ve bought. Just to point out, maize/corn is not a good ingredient, it’s hard on a dogs health, even for us humans. If you’re happy for your dog to eat maize/corn, it should always be listed as the last ingredient not at the beginning.

Check to see if can you see anything else in your dogs kibble. White bits are more than likely fish-bones and should not be obvious to the naked eye. The Wellness brand contains fish bones in some of their ranges; this can be lethal to small dog breeds and puppies.

What to look out for in dry dog food

Without a doubt the best dry dog food should not contain anything that we wouldn’t eat, it should always be fit for human consumption.best dry dog food

All dog food should be the same color, no pink grains or blue.

One good experiment is to buy a small bag of cheap supermarket kibble and an expensive quality brand. Compare them both and perform the experiment above, if nothing has opened your eyes yet, then this will.

The brands listed below offer hypoallergenic and sensitive ranges, no preservatives, no unnatural food colorings and no artificial flavorings. They also offer: free of wheat and gluten, soya, beef, dairy, by-products, derivatives, menadione, growth hormones, salt, sugar and much more.

It’s appalling what some manufactures add to a dog’s kibble. Checkout ‘Dog Food Ingredients Debunked’This will expose everything you have always wanted to know about dog food and brands; and what should and shouldn’t be added in your dog’s food.

You are the only person who can decide which is the best dry dog foods. You also have to decide what is financially okay for your budget, but my recommendation would have to be firstly five-star brands and secondly four-star brands.

In particular, my favorite is Orijen, not only does this rave great reviews, but it is packed with huge amounts of meat, it’s grain-free and gluten-free. Blue Buffalo Wilderness is another good choice, but I’d avoid the salmon because of the possibility of mercury.

I know these best dry dog food brands don’t fit into most dog owners budget, this is why I’ve compiled a list of other high quality brands below.

Always introduce a new food gradually, sometimes the introduction can last weeks or even months. Quickly changing a dogs kibble could upset your dogs stomach. Some higher quality kibble can be too rich for a dog, especially if they’ve never eaten bountiful foods.

When you buy your dogs food, store it well once opened. Squeeze all the air out before sealing or buy an air tight dog food bin. It is best to keep dog food in its original bag just in case there may be some dreaded dog food recalls. Believe it or notcompanies always want their bags back, as a  result it’s better to put the bag and the contents straight into the dog food bin.

Dried food can be stored until the best before date, which is usually found on the bag.

The best dry dog food companies listed below offer high quality kibble.

Arden Grange AvoDerm Acana
Annamaet Amicus Applaws
Barkingheads Blue Buffalo Evo
Innova Instinct Life’s Abundance
Orijen Paw Naturaw Timberwolf
Nutro Ultra Holistic Newman’s Own Organics Wysong
Petcurean Go Natural Merrick Pet Care Wellness

About the author

Jennifer Pitts

I love pets and I love animals. I have 2 dogs and 3 cats and it's not enough for me.

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