If you’ve been reading this blog, by now you know that I sure do love FOOD! But not just any food. I crave food that not only tastes good but is good for me. And the foundation for good health is nutrition. For 2021, I made a New Year’s resolution to eat better, so I took it upon myself to do some research into the best diet and nutrition for dogs like me, your favorite Hipster Hound, Rex!
Hungry Like the Wolf
Diet is the single most important element of my healthcare, and the greatest diet consists of a variety of whole foods high in meat proteins, especially considering I am a carnivore by nature! Although I have evolved domestically from a wolf to a house pup, my digestive system has not and remains virtually the same as my wolf counterparts. Whoa! My intestinal tract is very short and allows the consumption and absorption of raw meat for optimal health. However, I still have not evolved digestively to where I can effectively process low-quality, cooked, dry kibble. So dive right into high-quality kibble, fresh raw foods, and supplements.
It seems that commercially cooked kibble has become the customary diet for most pets in human culture. But I found out that not all kibble is created equal! When researching a kibble that would be a good fit for your furry friends, it is important for humans to avoid ingredients such as corn, wheat, soy, and byproducts. Each of these ingredients not only provide zero nutritional benefit but have a great potential to cause allergies, itchy skin, dry skin, tear stains, and weight gain.
Byproducts are also something to avoid at all costs. A byproduct or byproduct meal is a secondary product derived from the production process of the original meat source. In other words, these are all of the “leftover” components of the animal being used that are no longer desirable or fit for human consumption. These can include feathers, beaks, feet, essentially the remainder of the meat once the muscle meat has been removed. Ew! Here at The Hipster Hound, we only carry brands of kibble that are free of corn, wheat, soy, and byproducts. By eating a premium kibble, I eat less, have less waste in the yard, as well as prolong my health and wellbeing.
Raw & Whole Foods
If you want to take nutrition a step further, let’s WOOF about raw and whole foods! A raw, whole food diet is the best thing for dogs and cats. Fresh food is full of life: from natural enzymes, probiotics, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals all in their natural states. Raw pet food is designed to be fed just as that: RAW. Cooking will deplete, diminish, and destroy all of those naturally occurring vitamins and minerals that we need to thrive. The fresher the food, the more bioavailable the nutrients will be, which means we are absorbing and using all of them.
Dry kibble is cooked and processed at very high temperatures, killing off those naturally occurring enzymes, vitamins, and minerals, resulting in those essential nutrients being added again from a synthetic source, not a natural one. This decreases bioavailability. The Hipster Hound stocks many different raw foods that are made specifically for us pets like Answers Pet Food and Primal Pet Foods.
Additionally, always remember that a little bit of raw is better than none! If you are eating a dry kibble, it would be of great benefit to add a little raw as a topper at meal-time or even a whole foods supplement, which leads me to my next point...
There are a variety of supplements that can benefit pets, especially if they are eating a dry kibble. Adding some whole foods such as raw goat milk and bone broth has taken my nutrition to the next level! Raw goat milk can be added to any meal and is packed with essential vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and enzymes as well as aids digestion. Bone broth is also an incredible addition to our diet. Containing collagen, bone broth helps to restore and protect the gut lining as well as fight against leaky gut and improve digestion.
Diet and nutrition are both critical parts of my optimal health and longevity. If you would like to chat with us about your dogs’ specific needs and taste, we would love to meet with you at The Hipster Hound! Our well trained staff can help you find the right fit for you and your pet. Whether that may be upgrading to an all natural kibble, adding some whole foods, or beginning to start feeding your pup raw, we would be honored for the opportunity to help make this transition easy, fun, and educational. Give us a call or stop by at any time during our regular business hours to start building a better bowl!
Rex, The Original Hipster Hound