That was our top criteria for selecting the best canned dog food.
If you want to cut to the chase, the Cesar Multi-pack Wet Dog Food scored high marks in all categories we researched and is our top pick.
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What is a Canned Dog Food?
With the huge selection of canned dog food on the market, trying to decide on the right one for your dog can be a daunting task. We have provided a list of tips for the dog owner that will help you narrow the choices down and will allow you to make a choice that will benefit your dog in the best possible way.
- What to Look for in Your Dog Food – You want to look for canned dog food that cater to the multiple health needs that your dog has. Look for all around good nutrition and ingredients in the canned food you choose. Make sure that the choice you make is for the age dog you have. A puppy needs specific nutrients, as does a working dog or senior. Not all dog food works for all ages so be sure to find the right canned dog food for the specific needs of your dog at the age he is right now.
- It should not have Sub-Par Grains – Do not feed your dog canned food that is made up of mostly grains and false foods. This can cause stomach upset and allergic reactions as well. The best way to avoid this is to look for canned food that advertises on the can “Grain Free” If you do feed your dog grains, make sure they are wholesome, good grains. There are some out there; you just have to read the labels to make sure.
- Natural Preservatives – Preservatives such as BHT, Ethoxyquin, BHA alter the taste of foods. You want to look for canned dog food that contains ascorbate or tocopherol preservatives. These are safer for your dog. You want to find and purchase canned dog food with the least amount of preservatives possible.
- What is Your Dog’s Age? – Dogs age fairly quickly, but you still need to be very aware of your dog’s age which determines their nutritional needs as well.
- Puppy – look for a protein to fat ratio which helps your puppy grow up faster and be healthy too.
- Adult – This is usually from ages 1-6 years. Protein and fat increase in the food but dry can also be added to their food to help them get the needed amounts of nutrition and health benefits.
- Performance Dogs – If you have a dog that has a high level of work that he or she performs they will have a higher nutritional need as well. Performance level canned dog food has extra protein and added antioxidents as well. The low carbohydrates in performance dog food keep their body weight at a good level and respiration improves as well. They can also maintain their stamina for a longer bought of time.
- Senior – Food for the older dog addresses the needs that an older dog has. Dry dog foods are very helpful at this stage but they can still have canned food as well. Protein and fat levels are lower in senior dog food than the other age groups. They have more fiber in them as well. It will help them maintain the right weight for their age since their activity levels are usually down as well.
- Weight Management Food – The limited ingredients in weight management food are designed to help the overweight dog slim down without starving or losing nutrients. They have extra fiber in them and the fat and protein levels remain unchanged. The higher fiber reduces the dog’s weight and the portion sizes are smaller. Because the dog food has more fiber, the dog will feel fuller on the smaller portions.
- What are the Ingredients? – Reading the labels on your dog’s food is crucial to finding the right canned food for them. One bad ingredient in the mix can cause all kinds of problems for your dog’s digestion. Look for the canned dog food that has meat sources listed at the top of the ingredient list. The closer to the front of the list, the better it is. Look for at least two grain sources as well but make sure they are healthy grains. Grain free is ideal if you can get it. They may be a little more expensive but the differences in your dog’s health and well being make them worth it.
- Change Dog Food Carefully – Even if you are changing to a healthier dog food, you need to make the switch carefully and not all at once. The best way to do this is to do a half and half method, gradually increasing the amount of the new dog food until you are feeding them the new dog food completely.
- Pay Attention to Dog Food Recalls – Check for dog food recalls on pet sites. This will apply to wet and dry dog food. Many brands have had to have recalls and regrettably it does happen but if you pay attention you won’t have to worry. The best way to check for recalls is to look at the FDA website.
- What is the Climate You Live In? – Cold environments leads to a lot of body heat use to stay warm. Canned dog food with higher levels of protein and fat will help the dog that needs to maintain their body heat. Sometimes carbohydrates help this as well. Take the climate into consideration and make sure your dog has what they need.
- Pregnant Dogs have Different Needs – If your dog is pregnant or nursing puppies they will have their own set of nutritional requirements. She may need dog protein supplement foods and higher carbohydrates as well to support her need for more energy while she is feeding her puppies.
When it comes to feeding your dog the healthiest dog food you can, you want to find high quality foods that will improve the digestive system, skin and coat of your dog. The tips listed above will help you choose the perfect canned dog food for your dog regardless of age. You will know what to look for and how much protein, carbohydrates and other nutrients your dog will need each day.
Having the right information will enable you to sort through the multitude of canned dog food choices so you get the one that is best for your dog whether it is a puppy, a senior dog, pregnant or a working dog. Being able to make an informed decision will give you the confidence and peace of mind that you are choosing the dog food that is best for your dog and their health needs.
- CESAR – http://www.cesar.com/
- Pedigree – http://www.pedigree.com/
- Natural Balance – http://www.naturalbalanceinc.com/