Food plays an important role in providing all the necessary nutrients affecting the maintenance of the body in excellent condition and health. In the process of choosing the food, it is recommended to pay special attention to the content and source of key nutrients, such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals.

Importance of essential nutrients

Protein constitutes a key nutrient. It is a fundamental building block of tissues in the bodies of dogs. It helps in the creation and repair of muscles, skin, hair, bones and other body structures. Meat, eggs and fish are examples of high-quality sources of animal protein, containing not only essential amino acids, but also other essential nutrients such as vitamins and minerals. Valuable protein in dog food should be carefully balanced and easily digestible. Insufficient protein levels can lead to nutritional deficiencies, while excess protein can put a strain on organs, especially kidneys.

Carbohydrates are the main source of energy for dogs. After digestion, they are converted into glucose, which provides the energy necessary for physical activity and the proper functioning of organs. Certain types of carbohydrates, especially fiber, play an important role in maintaining a healthy dog’s digestive system. Fiber has a positive effect on intestinal peristalsis, regulates the digestive process and supports the maintenance of proper bacterial flora in the intestines. Adjusting the amount of carbohydrates in a dog’s diet can affect weight control, and carbohydrate-rich diets with a low glycemic index can help dogs maintain a proper body weight.

Fats are essential for maintaining healthy skin and coat. The fatty acids they contain, especially omega-3 and omega-6, play an important role in improving skin condition, preventing psoriasis, as well as maintaining a shiny coat. They also help transport and absorb fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamins A, D, E, and K. These vitamins are essential for various body functions, including bone health, eyesight, immunity, and reproductive processes. It is important to provide fats in appropriate amounts and a balanced ratio of different types of fatty acids to support the dog’s different body functions.

Vitamins and minerals are essential for maintaining your dog’s overall health. They participate in many biological processes, affecting the functioning of the nervous system, the immune system, and enzymatic regulation. Vitamins D, K, and minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium are crucial for the proper development and maintenance of bones and teeth. Minerals, including potassium and magnesium, are important for the proper functioning of muscles and the nervous system. Vitamins A and E and minerals such as zinc are important for maintaining healthy skin and coat. B vitamins, such as thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin, are essential for regulating metabolism, including the conversion of nutrients into energy. Antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E, and some minerals help protect cells from the damaging effects of free radicals, which in turn can help prevent degenerative changes.

Functional additives

Functional additives in dog food play a variety of roles aimed at supporting the health and general condition of the animal. Necessary additives that should be present in the composition of good dog food:

Glucosamine and chondroitin are the basic building blocks of joint cartilage. They have a positive effect on the condition of joints, supporting their flexibility and functioning. Therefore, they are particularly important for older dogs, sports dogs or dogs prone to joint problems.

MOS and FOS are prebiotics that promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in the intestines. They improve the balance of bacterial microflora in the intestines, which supports the health of the dog’s digestive system.

Enterococcus faecium is a probiotic bacterium that supports the maintenance of healthy intestinal microflora in dogs. By increasing the presence of beneficial bacteria in the intestines, this probiotic promotes digestive processes. And improving digestion contributes to more effective absorption of nutrients from the food they eat.

Superfood Additives

Superfood additives in dog food play an important role in providing additional nutrients that can have a beneficial effect on the health of the animal.

Borage oil is rich in gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which affects skin and coat health. It also has a beneficial effect on fighting inflammation in the body, which may be particularly important in the case of skin problems or allergies in a dog.

African Marigold thanks to its immunostimulating properties supports the immune system.

Cranberry contains a natural substance that has an antibacterial effect, thanks to which it can support the urinary system.

Green Tea is a natural antioxidant that supports the process of fighting free radicals.

What to look for when choosing dog food?

  • COMPOSITION OF THE food – Check the composition of the food to make sure that it contains proper amounts of protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. Ingredients should be of high quality and the list of ingredients should be understandable and transparent.
  • ANALYTICAL COMPOSITION – Contains information on the percentage content of individual nutrients.
  • FUNCTIONAL ADDITIVES AND SUPERFOOD – Pay attention to what additives have been included in the composition of the food and what functions of the body they will support. The addition of some ingredients makes the food gain additional, health-promoting properties.
  • AGE AND SIZE OF DOG: Dogs of different ages and sizes have different nutritional needs. Choose a food adapted to the stage of the dog’s life and its size.
  • PHYSICAL ACTIVITY – The level of activity of a dog influences its caloric demand.

What to avoid in dog foods?

  • ARTIFICIAL COLOURS, FLAVOURS AND PRESERVATIVES –  Artificial additives can cause allergies in dogs and be unnecessary in their diet. foods with natural ingredients do not contain artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.
  • TOO MANY FILLERS – Some foods contain a lot of fillers, such as corn or wheat, which have low nutritional value and can cause food intolerance.
  • UNKNOWN INGREDIENTS OR ADDITIVES – Try to avoid foods whose composition is unclear and unknown substances are not precisely described. It is worth choosing foods with a clear list of ingredients.

Dog food should be complete and nutritionally balanced, which means that it must contain all the necessary nutrients in the right proportions. For this reason, it is crucial to adapt the quantity and quality of food to the individual needs and characteristics of the dog, such as age, body weight, physical activity and possible special health requirements. It is worth consulting a veterinarian in order to develop an optimal diet adapted to a particular animal.