7 Ways to Improve Your Dog’s Kibble
Dry dog food is convenient and easy to use, but it has some drawbacks: lack of digestive enzymes and probiotics that are found in raw foods, too few essential fatty acids, lack of variety, and lots of carbohydrates that many dogs are ill-equipped to handle. The result is that pets often develop allergies, inflammation, skin issues, diabetes, or other health problems. How to compensate? Use the very best dry food kibble you can find**, and do some of the following:
1. Add a topper.
There are many commercially prepared products that are specifically made to be added to dry food. These toppers include enzymes, vitamins, probiotics and antioxidants to replace those that are lost from whole food during cooking and processing. Freeze-dried products are available that you just sprinkle over the food or there are frozen formulas that you put a dollop or two on top of the food. There are also liquid types that you just pour over the bowl.
2. Add raw or lightly steamed veggies.
This provides an antioxidant boost for all dogs, especially if they’re older or overweight. Raw veggies should be finely grated, ground in a blender or food processor, or juiced so the cellulose is broken down. Good choices include broccoli, carrots, beans and spinach.
3. Add raw or lightly cooked meat or eggs.
Dogs evolved eating a diet high in animal protein and low in carbohydrates. Adding extra high-quality meat or egg protein reduces the overall carbohydrate content, and is especially good for active dogs or dogs that are overweight. Eggs can be raw – including the shell - or lightly scrambled, but be sure to cook them plain without seasoning or butter. Chicken or turkey without the skin are good meat choices.
4. Add some oils for essential fatty acids.
Fish oil is great for all dogs, containing essential fatty acids to strengthen the immune system, improve inflammatory conditions such as allergies and arthritis, and improve the skin and coat. Coconut oil is another good choice. Be sure to purchase high-quality oil from a reputable company.
5. Add raw goat’s milk.
Many consider goat’s milk to be the ultimate complete, natural, food source, packed with probiotics along with vital nutrients, enzymes, vitamins, electrolytes and more. It’s important that the goat’s milk you use is raw – not pasteurized – and comes from goats that are organically raised.
6. Feed raw, meaty parts of chicken or turkey.
The bones of young turkey and chicken are soft and pliable enough to be eaten whole, including wings, necks and backs. Raw or freeze-dried bones provide calcium and other minerals in the proper ratios, as well as proteins, fats, and many other valuable nutrients. Be sure to only use bones that are designed for pets as bones found in the grocery store may not be safe.
7. Add Bone Broth
Bone broth is a “superfood” - packed with vitamins and minerals that provide some impressive health benefits for your dog or cat. Simmering beef or chicken bones for a long time breaks down the tendon, cartilage, meat and bone marrow and releases all of the nourishment into the liquid. Bone broth or stock for humans is different and is NOT safe for pets. You can make bone broth yourself or there are several types available specifically for pets.
** We recommend Nature’s Logic brand kibble as it is the only dog food line that does not use chemically-synthesized man-made ingredients. The natural vitamins, enzymes, probiotics and amino acids are not cooked out, so they don’t need to be synthetically added back in. The food is responsibly sourced and made from the highest quality human-grade ingredients.
Don’t be misled by beautiful packaging and engaging commercials. Know what’s really inside the bag of food you pour into your pet’s bowl every day and give it a boost of nutrition using some of the above suggestions.