6 Biggest (And Best) New Trends In Healthy Dog Food
Numerous studies have demonstrated the benefits of antioxidants in humans, particularly in slowing down the aging process—in fact, if you're not eating enough raw fruits and veggies, you probably aren't getting enough antioxidants. And while there are no prominent studies on the benefits of antioxidants for dogs, making sure he gets enough in his diet can't hurt, experts say.
With the popularity of gluten-free options for humans, it's no surprise that the trend is creeping into the dog food aisle. Theoretically, there is no reason dogs couldn't be gluten intolerant. And "wheat is not an essential food for dogs," says Nestle, so there's no harm in trying a gluten-free diet if your dog has allergies, skin problems, digestive issues, or other health ailments. That said, there's no research suggesting your average, healthy dog would benefit from the change.
These essential oils are great for a dog's skin and coat—and already found in most commercial dog foods. Even though omega fats have lately gained prominence on labels, you don't necessarily need to seek out the label. That said, if you prepare your dog's chow yourself, it's not a bad idea to drop a teaspoon or two of an omega pet food supplement into his food every day.
Long known to be an essential amino acid for cats (getting too little can cause kitties to go blind), taurine is now being added to dog food. The amino acid is considered conditionally essential to dogs, and veterinarian research has suggested that dogs low in the protein can develop health problems. The evidence isn't overwhelming, but if you're looking for the best chow for your pup, taurine is probably not a bad idea.
Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are essential for a healthy human digestive system. Whether or not the same holds true for dogs, we don't know yet, but the same advice holds true: It probably can't hurt and may even help Fido if he shows digestive problems. But if your dog has bad intestinal symptoms, says Nestle, don't go for dog food, but give him a bit of "the least processed, unsweetened, plain yogurt you can find." The same goes for you.
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