What kind of food to choose for your dog?

dog food
You want to give your dog the most suitable food for it in order to provide it with a healthy diet? But you hear many different opinions, and you do not know what to choose: home or industrial, dry or wet, what quality food is all about and how to differentiate between different standards? Here, you will find quite a few handy advices what types of food are out there and which ones are seemingly the best.

The different types of food

There are several ways to feed your pet. Specifically, we classify the types of foods into three categories:

  • Crackers: industrial dry food, most currently used.
  • The mash or pellets in boxes: Industrial wet food, also very popular.
  • The “housewife ration“: a cooked every day at home eating.

The BARF” of feeding dogs raw meat and bones, without grain is one way some people surely prefer. Not recommended because it is so very difficult to meet the nutritional needs of the dog including minerals, micro-nutrients deficiency, vitamins and fatty acids and others.

In the case of a ready industrial food, such as boxes or croquettes, there are several levels of quality:

Very good food, so-called “health” or “premium” that will be tailored to each dog based on its breed, age, level of activity. You find these foods from your vet or in pet specialised shops.

Standard foods you find in the supermarket.

Household food or industrial food?
Domestic supply (ie homemade)

The domestic supply is interesting and most certainly beneficial if it is prepared in a balanced way. Its main advantage is the use of fresh ingredients. It must be made ​​of meats, cereals, vegetables plus oil, of the yeast and added vitamins and minerals. Dogs have been known to eat whatever meals humans do, for the most part anyway. Generally speaking, if it smells of meat then it must be tasty and the dog will be all over it.

homemade dog foodThe main drawback is the difficulty to prepare a healthy, balanced meals, and that every day. This requires knowledge of canine nutrition and dietetics fairly extensive. Must be thoroughly familiar with the details of your dog’s needs, which vary by race, age, activity level and then weigh each ingredient. That is to say if you absolutely are aiming towards crafting the super diet and want to make sure your pet gets positively the best of the best.

The domestic supply and thus generates significant constraints, first of all in terms of cost for a balanced diet contains expensive ingredients (fresh meat, vegetables). Then it takes time to prepare the ration, the shelf life is short (2 or 3 days in the refrigerator). Finally, dietary result is average, especially since the dog will tend to sort and eat only what he prefers accentuating the dietary imbalance. These are the kind of things you need to be mindful of while considering cooking dog food domestically. At the end of the day, dog will eat what it wants, may even resort to sort things out from what you give it, leaving out valuable nutritional components.

Regarding the croquettes mixture / boxes or croquettes / table scraps, the exact composition of the bowl can not be defined, this type of food is considered a household ration and is certainly unbalanced!

Recommendation of the veterinarian: Attention to the diet “old“, ie a soup made ​​with rice, pieces of meat animals (very oily) and table scraps! This type of diet is very unbalanced and leads to significant deficiencies, harmful to the health of the animal. Standards delivered by any commercial feed is preferable to the random nature and potential deadliness of the old habits of feeding dogs.

Industrial food

canned foodIndustrial dog food is easy to prepare and above all, it is always balanced. At the bare minimum you can expect that it covers most of the bases when it comes to nutrition and is a good all-rounder despite age, activity and other variants.  If you take a food “standard”, your dog will receive nutrients (proteins, carbohydrates and fats) in sufficient quantities, but no guarantee the origin and quality of these nutrients. Premium foods are themselves made ​​from premium ingredients with a nutritional level and higher digestibility. Processed foods are developed by experts in canine nutrition. These foods contain all nutrients in optimal proportions, it is not necessary to add vitamins, minerals or any other ingredient or supplements.

Recommendation of the veterinarian: It is advisable to give your dog croquettes at a young age. The food industry is positively abundant of these types of food so do not vary the meal by adding table scraps or homemade meal. To please and treat it from time to time, think of dog treats (biscuits, chewing bones) which will be given in-between meals, as a reward.

The choice of quality

Processed foods are available in two quality levels (“standard” or “premium“) and in two forms, dry food (kibble) or wet food (boxes).

‘Standard’ foods

These are the foods available in supermarkets. We’re now starting to find food for puppies to senior dogs, but overall, these foods are not segmented according to the needs of each dog.

The price difference between the different ranges can be explained by the difference in quality of the ingredients that make up each type of food. The are very different quality and origin of meat used, the standard foods are generally much fatter, so the dogs are sometimes more palatable. They are also much less digestible, the amount to be consumed to the same nutritional value is higher than a standard premium food food.

Their main advantage of these sorts of foods is that they are generally cheaper. But be careful because it does not compare the price of a bag of kibble but the daily cost. For a bag of premium dry food lasts longer than a standard bag of kibble that should give larger amounts to the dog. The difference in quality is immediately apparent on the feces of the animal and particularly puppies that tend to have diarrhea, it is very rare with a premium food.

‘Premium’ foods

These are the foods of “health” found in specialized circuits (pet shops, garden centers, veterinary clinics and others) that are of higher quality and above which are segmented according to the sizes of races, ages or physiological needs individuals. Depending on the needs of your dog, there is a food which is adapted. You can find food for puppy, adult dog with normal activity, increased or decreased activity, small, medium or large breed, and for older dogs or dogs with a tendency to be overweight.

There are healthy foods that are perfectly balanced. Check out a few:

  • Complete proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, fiber, minerals, trace elements.
  • Balanced: for a puppy growing rates of protein and fat should be higher than for adults, as well, calcium and phosphorus needed to build and reinforce the skeleton must be present, but not too much to avoid unrest growth.
  • Digestible is a food of good quality, it is more digestible, less amounts to be important to ingest the same nutritional value, and there is less residue thus stool.

A puppy eats large amounts of food relative to its weight, with food of a higher quality and more digestible, it will take less accustomed to stuff.

In adult dogs, the difference is found very quickly just by looking at the animal faeces. They are less frequent, molded, size and smell is much less with a premium food.

Boxes or croquettes, what to choose?

It is known that a puppy will easily get used to a kind of eating pattern and may even go as far as to refuse to change its particular diet even if required to. It is therefore necessary at the outset to make the right choice straight off the bat.

Mash canned

The mash is very palatable, it’s a real treat, so the puppy eats more and does so enjoying it heavily. However, it has a number of drawbacks.

The mash is often too greasy, it is more difficult to digest and spoils quickly in the air, it “turns” especially in summer. Be aware that the paste contains 70-80% water, with the same nutritional value, the puppy must ingest much higher amount than kibble. Resulting in the bad habit of gorging” more indigestion, flatulence and often larger, softer stool odor,.

Mash also has the disadvantage of promoting the emergence of tartar on the teeth. While the patties through a limited natural and mechanical action of friction on the teeth during chewing.

Finally, the supply of boxes costs much more than a diet as kibble.


Crackers offer many benefits:

  • They are cleaner, they do not look and feel softer
  • More digestible, they reduce the risk of diarrhea, flatulence and give “manageable” stool more
  • They are less expensive

Best for the oral health of your dog chewing kibble helps massage teeth and gums. In the long term, the deposit of tartar on the teeth is less important than a dog that eats only canned food.

Recommendation of the veterinarian: energy is a key factor for the health of your dog. We strongly advise you to give it a diet as croquettes, premium quality and responsive to their needs (age, breed size, activity level, specific state such as overweight).


Overall, we are hoping to have convinced you, it makes a lot of sense to keep dog’s specific requirements in mind when choosing its food. There are a number of reasonable considerations to weight up – price, quality, age and physical activity of the dog and wet or dry and of food. It is not always easy to determine the best course of action but if you hold your dog near and dear, you are expected to go that extra mile for its own sake.

How to choose the best dry food for your dog?

dog food
Feeding your dog is a vital duty of yours if you have chosen to have one these loyal friend pets.

To provide shelter, water and food are the three fundamental tasks of all owners (managers) of dogs and cats of course. A dog should be fed every day of his life (really every day?) For at least a decade.

Today, advances in food specialized in feeding pets (pet food) allow to adopt a dog without asking any technical question like “but how will I feed this animal?

Industrial give you the answer on a plate, even many trays! The supply of pet food is simply daunting. Dry food, wet food, “premium“, “ultra premium” for sterilized dogs or for dog sports, you can find everything in very good as very bad.

If the offer is currently very diverse and undeniably, it remains heavily towards dry food, croquettes.

These croquettes are the result of major technological advances in pet food (cooking - extrusion, coating, drying ), and they are truly the ones who have the monopole feed pets ..
Crackers: market leader in food

8 out of 10 owners use dry kibble to feed their dog. It is an indisputable fact, that is the source of a huge market of over 2.5 billion in France only!

The croquettes are practical, all garden centers offer, supermarkets, gas stations, offices and grooming the course veterinary clinics.

For the price, it’s like everything, there is the first prize especially in supermarkets and garden centers and high-end or “premium” in veterinary clinics. Each owner decides by himself, or through your veterinarian, who will serve the croquettes meals to its Medoro loved.

At the apparent cacophony of brands of kibble, only 3 large multinational share more than 70% market share. Mars Petcare, Nestlé Purina Petcare and Affinity have the most well-known brands such as Royal Canin, Friskies, Fido, and Affinity Advance Brekkies or Cesar Canigou and both owned by Mars Petcare.

Faced with stalls filled with packets of kibble, so do not be fooled, these international companies seek above all profit, even beyond the actual well-being of your animals.

That is why it should be as vigilant as possible in the selection of these croquettes. It is imperative for the health of your pet, to know all the tricks used by manufacturers of kibble, handling with great skill the texts of European and French legislation on the subject.

So I suggest you discover the 5 golden rules that you should always apply before buying any package of kibble. Even if your vet will recommend them, do not buy until you have passed the test of kibble 5 rules.

eating puppiesYou will discover later in this article what are the healthy alternative to crackers, and why it is necessary to have a healthy even against the advice of his veterinarian doubt.
5 golden rules for choosing the right croquettes

I remind you, do not buy your cakes before they pass this test. I guarantee you that you might fail a number of candidates, and direct you to other brands, other manufacturers.

The rules are not edited in ascending order of importance, they are all equal.
1st rule: “The more protein and minimal carbs”

9 times out of 10 you will never find the amount of carbohydrates (or sugars) contained in the kibble. Why? EU law simply does not require manufacturers to mention.

This is all the more interesting for manufacturers of pet food because dogs have so far been no need for carbohydrates. In other words, dogs can live very well without carbohydrate intake, but with intakes of protein and sufficient fat.

So there is no point for you, the owners, to know this amount is generally high in kibble.

Unfortunately for us, the manufacturers do not make life easier to discover the actual amounts of protein and carbohydrates contained in the kibble. That’s why I urge you to download this Excel sheet that you will instantly dry matter intake and calorie intake of carbohydrates, fats and proteins.

Download the Excel sheet

Just know the rate of protein and crude fat, moisture (if it is not mentioned, it is estimated at 10%) and ash (ashes or in English, and if they they are not mentioned are estimated at 8%).

At the protein level, caloric intake should be as close as possible to 56%, while carbohydrate calorie intake should approach 14%.

On your first calculations and comparisons of your first, you may be horrified by the amounts of carbohydrates, often around 45%. Please bear in mind that 25% of carbohydrates is an excellent score for kibble. Approaching closer to the figures.
2nd rule: A maximum of animal protein”

If you‘re not yet convinced, dogs are carnivores. Carnivores with great morphological, anatomical and physiological arsenal to devour and digest live prey.

Although domestic dogs now have incontrovertible evidence of adaptation to humans, and higher sugar diet, they should be getting mainly proteins from the animal kingdom.

This is why you must calculate the share of animal protein with those of vegetable protein to choose those that provide the most animal products.

To do this, you must beware of all vegetable protein intake including all gluten grains (corn, wheat mainly) that provide only proteins and serve to increase total protein intake.

Of course, the ingredients that you will take into account in these calculations must imperatively follow the rules.
3rd rule: Choose good quality animal protein, avoid the worst”

This rule complements the previous one. Beyond the amount of animal protein, which will be taken to find the nuggets with the maximum possible quality of protein is essential.

Rather old scientific studies have demonstrated the important role of quality animal protein quantity. In other words, it is better to have less animal protein in kibble, but better quality.

To find good quality animal protein, just read the label. Here is the ranking of animal protein premium to the worst:

Fresh chicken (or beef, poultry, pork), dehydrated poultry meat, dehydrated poultry proteins, poultry by-products.

An important note to this rule: some very clever manufacturers have clearly understood now that consumers read labels and seek those famous right ingredients. Therefore, some nuggets appear in first place ingredients fresh chicken”, which has the effect of relieving the consumer and phish, while following ingredients is absolutely not recommended. This trap is classic, so beware and read the entire label.
4th rule: “The animal and plant species used to appear

This rule again appeal to the current legislation. Manufacturers of kibble does not have the obligation to indicate the species (beef, poultry, pork) or vegetable (wheat, corn, barley, etc.) used.

From that moment, and if you read a list of ingredient ‘animal fat’ or or ‘grain flours “” dehydrated animal proteins, “I advise you to reset immediately and systematically croquettes in question.

Until proven otherwise, if the manufacturer does not want to know what species he uses, it’s either he simply does not know what there is in these croquettes, or that it wants you knowledge. In both cases, the risk of falling on the raw materials of inferior quality and very high.

Knowing this, beware of ingredients whose species is unknown.
5th Rule: Grain is to minimize

In canine nutrition, you should know that cereals are under heavy controversy. First, grains are first cheap manufacturers croquettes materials, on the other hand these grains provide lots of calories as carbohydrates (starches) in the diet, which greatly increases the energy value of kibble.

Unfortunately, grains have never been part of the diet of dogs, wild or tame (by today proportions). Only with the advent of modern croquettes that came heavily in grain feeding dogs.

Technically, the grain is very unattractive for the dog because they provide only carbohydrates (remember that the needs of the dog are equal to 0), very few nutrients and vitamins and greatly fatigued the dog’s digestive system, especially through the pancreas amylase synthesis.

It’s not for nothing that the fashionable alternatives croquettes are guaranteed without grains.

How to choose the kibble for his dog?
From theory to practice

In the light of these rules, you now understand why you have to compare them carefully croquettes. Go home and lay flat all the pros and cons of your candidates before you buy.

I admit that the task is not easy, especially at the start when we discover that face hidden nuggets with all that that implies.

That is why I propose a practical study of three croquettes (A, B and C) very different, which do exist on the market. These croquettes, there is a very bad lot, an intermediate and a final batch well above the others. It’s up to you to analyze and give your results by comment!

I do not want to influence anyone to a brand of kibble in particular, croquettes remain anonymous.

Lot A:

Cereals, meat and animal by-products (10%) *, vegetable protein extracts, oils and fats, derivatives of vegetable origin, sugars, minerals

Crude Protein: 22%; crude fat: 11%; Crude ash: 8%

Lot B:

Fresh Chicken (22.1%), dehydrated poultry meat and grease (14.7%), sweet potatoes, potatoes, fresh salmon (7.4%), dehydrated and defatted salmon (7.4%), fresh white fish (3.7%), small peas, powdered eggs (3%), chicken fat (3%), alfalfa, chicken sauce (2.6%), duck fat (0.8%), minerals, fiber peas, vitamins, yeast

Crude Protein: 31%; crude fat: 16%; Crude ash: 9%; Moisture: 8.5%

Lot C:

Chicken (20%), wheat, maize gluten, dehydrated poultry protein, rice (8%), animal fat, corn, autolysate, dried beet pulp, minerals, egg powder, fish oil, colostrum (0 , 1%)

Crude Protein: 30%; crude fat content: 19%; Crude ash: 7%; Moisture: 8.5%

It’s up to you. For more hesitant, I suggest you read an analysis I made on my blog.
Other nuggets?

It is important to point out that choosing wrong type of food can disturb your dog’s stomach substantially and as a result it may cause excessive diarrhea or even vomiting.  In case such scenario plays out, it would be best if you have trusted HeroCleaners at your side to help you manage this.

Of course, there are alternatives to traditional cakes. Alternating current offer of dog food in the most appropriate manner possible. The (very known as the BARF for Biologically Adapted Raw Food) diet based on raw frozen preparation or whole prey tries to recreate the diet of wild dogs, mainly meat meat, offal, bones and a very small proportion of vegetables (often pre-digested) and fruit (often spoiled).

Of course, these alternative diets are not in the good graces of the workplace, and are frequently demonized by veterinarians and faculty as I show in my survey of French veterinary schools.

Far be it from me to give you a demonstration of these modes of power, I just want to point out that there are other ways that the “whole cake” and that many owners have successfully tested these transitions you will find all necessary information on the web.

To be complete, you also have the option to direct you to a so-called domestic supply, which has those advantages and disadvantages, in which you cook (cook understand) feed your dog.
Who am I to talk about canine nutrition?

I am forced to write this paragraph because not a pipe, who am I to talk about canine nutrition and marketings pitfalls of agro-pet food?

I like me rarely self-flagellate, but I am nothing. Or a professional canine health or a veterinarian or a veterinarian, much less a student of a veterinary assistant school.

I am a young blogger passionate about human and animal nutrition which investigates below what is on our plates and in bowls of our dogs. I recently published a book on my personal blog, Hard to Swallow, in which I explain thoroughly all the conflicts of interest between veterinarians and pet food industry.

The evidence is public, and many can not awaken in you a healthy doubt, but systematically to the advice of your veterinarian in nutrition, and to all manufacturers of kibble, even if they are the best in the world.