Dog food is the matter of discussion for most of the Pet Parents. In this guest post, Ishmeetsingh Chandiok, Mumbai Based Canine Nutritionist has debunked some myths of dog food.
The patter of little feet, the fuzzy hairball, the razor sharp teeth and the droopy, loving eyes….. all the traits of a loving puppy…. running around the house…. full of joy and fun!
Along with the joy of having a new life running around the house, comes the tremendous burden of being responsible, caring and loving Pet Parent. There is nothing more that we wish for our four-legged children than a healthy and fun filled life. The most important thing we need to give our dogs is TLC – Tender Loving Care…. And that, if followed by a healthy, nutritious and well-balanced diet.
There have always been opposing theories about how one should feed their dog. Some swear by the easily available dry kibbles while others swear by home cooked food. This is a debate that will, in all probability, be far from being comprehensively resolved in the near future.
I, personally, have been an advocate for home cooked food. This conclusion has been reached through a few years of research, trials on my very own “Bombay Settler” – Harley; and endless picking of vets’ brains to get a clearer picture.
While most of the vets will advocate home-cooked food to be the way forward, we, pet parents, make simple mistakes which, unknown to us, cause slow and long-term problems for our babies.
Rice prepared for us is good for our dogs – WRONG
the rice we use, which is mainly some form of Basmati, has higher quantities of carbohydrates than brown rice. This difference makes the dog put on more weight, with reduced fibers than if they were on a brown rice diet. Besides this, we salt our rice and most of us add a spoonful of ghee or oil to the rice prior to cooking. Both salt and oil/ghee are harmful to dogs in the long run.
Un-tempered daals (lentils) are ok for our dogs – WRONG
the daals (lentils) prepared by us at home are boiled with basic ginger & garlic pastes along with salt. The quantities of ginger, garlic, and salt which is added to our normal food is too high for our dog’s digestive systems to digest.
Chicken removed from a curry and washed can be fed to our dogs – WRONG
the spices, salt, and oils used during the cooking process seep into the chicken pieces and are retained within the meat in high quantities. Thus, even superficially washing the chicken, does not extract all the harmful ingredients and they are eventually ingested by the dogs.
Then what is the right thing to do?
The use of brown rice (unpolished rice), vegetables such as carrots, beans, pumpkin, cabbage, etc and boneless chicken is the safest combination of ingredients to use for preparing meals for your doggies. A conservative use of chicken liver is also advisable. Try and avoid mutton liver as it has a higher concentration of fats.
Advantages of Home Cooked Dog Food
Our dogs will live longer
With the absence of chemicals and preservatives in homemade dog food, our dogs will be healthier, happier and free from diseases, thus resulting in a longer lifespan.
Our dogs will be slim and have a perfect weight structure
Commercial dog food is usually higher in fats and sugars leading to obesity. We can prevent obesity and take control of the caloric intake of our dogs by feeding them homemade food.
Our dogs’ systems will be cleaner and smell better
Providing homemade dog food will keep their systems free of infections, keep their teeth cleaner and their breath fresher.