Dogs love food, right? It can sometimes feel as though our pups are happy to eat everything, whether it's their usual food, a snack they take from the table when nobody’s looking, or even something they pass on a walk.
But, there are some mistakes that many of us make when it comes to feeding our dogs. We might think they’ll be happy with what we give them – and a few of the best dog treats here and there – but that’s not necessarily the case. And dog trainer and behaviorist Louise Glazebrook has outlined the mistakes dog parents often make on in a new Instagram post. It’s a real eye-opener!
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1. Believing that your dog should not eat ‘human’ food: “Food is food,” says Glazebrook. “Our dogs desperately need fresh nutrients such as meat, fish, vegetables, fruit, and oils. These aren’t nice to have but a need.”
2. Thinking that dry food and kibble are the only options for sensitive stomachs and allergies: Glazebrook describes there being a “heap” of options aside from tins and bags of dry food.
There are other foods you may want to try for your pup, including lean chicken and fish like cod, salmon, and herring. Sweet potato and pumpkin can also be good, while you could also make some homemade dog food for sensitive stomachs, with plenty of lean meats and vegetables.
3. Cutting corners on what you feed your dog: Glazebrook says that while we all have varying budgets, it’s best to feed your dog the best food you can afford on yours.
“Do know, what you feed and put into your dog has a gigantic impact on their skin, ears, eyes, paws, stomach, behavior, their fur, the way they walk and so much more,” she explains. “So even if you can only afford to make one little change – [e.g.] add fresh items in – anything is better than nothing.”
4. Not understanding that ingredients like meat meal, maize, soya, wheat, animal and meat derivatives aren’t needed: Glazebrook explains that they’re fillers, and are added to dog food for this reason – not because they’re healthy. So, it’s a good idea to have a look at the ingredients in the food you feed your pup. Maybe you need a vet's guide to reading a dog food label, in which case you’re in luck!
5. Believing that dry kibble is always best: While we might often think – and are sometimes told – that dry kibble is best for dogs, when it comes to ourselves we often prioritize fresh, healthy foods. “It upsets me so much that this kind of information is still being given to dog parents in 2024,” says Glazebrook.
However, it's worth noting that there are fairly strict rules determining what can go in kibble, so if your furry friend does love it, it’s not actively unhealthy for them. And, of course, your pup can still have some of their favorite treats in moderation, too!
If you're at all concerned about your dog's diet, we recommend speaking with your vet or a trained doggy nutritionist, who will be able to offer you plenty of advice and guidance.
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Adam is a freelance journalist covering lifestyle, health, culture, and pets, and he has five years' experience in journalism. He's also spent the last few years studying towards undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in journalism. While a cat person at heart, he's often visiting his parents' Golden Retriever, and when he's not writing about everything pets he's probably drinking coffee, visiting a cat cafe, or listening to live music.