Best Limited Ingredient Dog Food For Your Pup’s Health: What Is Hypoallergenic?
Hypoallergenic means “free from all allergens.” Allergies are immune system reactions to substances that cause allergic symptoms such as hives, swelling, itching or difficulty breathing. These reactions may occur even if the person does not have any contact with those substances. They can be life threatening and require immediate medical attention.
The following list of ingredients is a partial list of allergen groups that are considered allergens. Other types of foods may contain other allergens, but these are the most common ones found in commercial dog foods. Some people do not react to all the ingredients listed here; however, they still might react to one or more of them. If your pet reacts badly to any of these ingredients, you should avoid feeding that particular type of dog food until you investigate further and try another brand.
Allergen Group Ingredients Can Cause Reactions Egg White Allergen (Shellfish) Fish Oil Peanut Allergy (Tree Nut) Soy Protein Sunflower Seed Oil Wheat Germ Allergy (Gluten) Whey Protein Animal Fat Chicken Meal Corn Gluten Milk Casein Peanuts Dried Eggs Egg Yolk Garlic Salt Lactose Milk Oatmeal Potato Starch Yeast Sugar Gelatin
What Are The Benefits Of Using A Hypoallergenic Dog Food?
Hypoallergenic dog food is specially formulated to reduce the chances of your pet having an allergic reaction to it. Since it uses only limited ingredients, there is a lower chance of your pet having an allergic reaction to it. It is very important to note that even if an individual ingredient is hypoallergenic, the combination of these ingredients can cause an allergic reaction.
What Are The Common Allergens In Dog Food?
The common allergens in dog food are: corn, wheat, soy, meat by-products, meat meals and artificial preservatives. Most of these ingredients are low quality fillers that are not necessary for your dog’s diet. Some of these ingredients have been found to be the cause of many allergic reactions in pets.
Are There Any Risks Involved In Using A Hypoallergenic Dog Food?
Although using a hypoallergenic dog food can reduce the chances of an allergic reaction, there is always a small risk involved. Some dogs can have an allergic reaction to any type of dog food. If your dog is one of the few that are affected in this way, it is best to consult your vet as soon as possible about how to proceed with treating the condition.
What Is BLUE Wilderness™ Dog Food?
BLUE Wilderness™ dog food is a species-appropriate raw recipe made with the finest natural ingredients, featuring a rich in meat protein and fat content, as well as eggs and wild gathered fruits and vegetables.
It comes in six delicious recipes that were each developed by the best chefs in the world using a holistic approach to care for your pet’s skin and coat, muscles and bones, heart and brain, kidney and liver health. This approach also ensures that each recipe is perfect for your dog in every way, from growth & development to the TMI moments.
What Are The Key Benefits Of BLUE Wilderness™ Dog Food?
Designed with a rich and natural meat content of 55% to promote a healthy and shiny coat and skin.
BLUE Wilderness™ dog food also includes added vitamins and minerals to keep your pet’s musculoskeletal, cardiovascular and nervous systems healthy.
BLUE Wilderness™ Dog Food Features:
Made with the finest natural ingredients.
The main source of protein comes from fresh and healthy meats such as lamb, chicken and fish.
Only contains pre and pro-biotic fibres to help maintain your dog’s digestive and immune system health.
Enhanced with natural vitamins and minerals to promote a healthy heart, brain and joints.
No artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.
A grain-free recipe that can also help reduce the buildup of tartar on your dog’s teeth.
Formulated to meet the changing needs of your dog as they grow older.
Meets the standards of the Animal Welfare Approved Program.
Available in 3, 6 or 12-pound bags.
Our product is guaranteed to be the best for your pet and comes with a 100% money back guarantee if you’re not completely satisfied.
This bag is an All Systems Go!™ approved product and contains no artificial ingredients or preservatives.
If you have any questions about BLUE Wilderness™ dog food , please give us a call at the Info Line (888) 770-3458.
Other Common Protein Sources In Dog Food
Dogs are carnivores which means meat is the best source of nutrients for them. It includes all parts of the animal, from muscle to fat. On the other hand, plants include both the fruit (high in sugar) and vegetables (high in fiber). Dogs can digest meat much more efficiently than plants since their digestive systems have evolved to process meat. While plants can still be a great source of nutrients, the truth is plants don’t contain all the nutrients your dog needs.
Fish is also a great source of meat and certain types of fish are healthier than others. Most dog foods today include fish in their recipes but some include more than others. You might be surprised to find that some of the meat ingredients in dog food are far from what you think of as meat. These can include “animal liver”, “poultry by-product”, “poultry stomach” and even “beef sinew”. These are all low quality ingredients but some are worse than others. While they might not be nutritious enough to serve to humans, they’re even less nutritious than the better ingredients so the dog food manufacturer puts in a lot of these low quality ingredients to bulk up the food. Some of them are easy to recognize while others sound more familiar and appealing.
While these ingredients are fine to serve to your pet in small amounts, they shouldn’t make up the main part of their diet. Meat, and the meat portion of meat by-products should always be the first ingredients in any dog food. The other named ingredients are better but shouldn’t take up more than a third of the total content. Look for dog foods that have meat as the first ingredient and also have a short, easy to recognize ingredient list.
Some dogs can develop allergies to certain foods, including meat-based ingredients. This is more common in some breeds than others but it’s still important to keep an eye on your dog’s skin and coat condition. Some ingredients such as fish, lamb, chicken, beef, eggs and milk are more likely to cause allergic reactions than others. For this reason, it’s a good idea to look for a dog food that uses alternative protein sources such as turkey or duck. You can also look for a food that uses potatoes or peas as their main carbohydrate source since these are less likely to cause allergic reactions than others such as wheat or corn.
Minerals and vitamins
Your dog also needs a range of minerals and vitamins for good health and these are usually included in any good quality dog food. They’re mostly included in pretty safe quantities but it’s still important to keep an eye on your dog’s reaction to each food. If you notice any changes in behavior, diarrhea or vomiting, it might be worth a trip to the vet to make sure there are no problems that aren’t caused by food.
By now you’re probably more confused than ever before!
How can you tell what’s good and what’s not when there are so many different opinions on the subject?
Here are a few tips to help you filter out the bad advice from the good:
· If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. This is especially true with weight loss plans and get rich quick schemes. There are no magical fixes when it comes to your dog’s diet so if a certain food or brand is supposed to “clean your dog’s teeth” or “stop your dog from getting fat” it’s very unlikely to be true.
The same goes for if it claims to be “all natural” or has cute cartoon animals on the packaging.
· If you see the AAFCO seal, put the food down. The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) is a group that sets guidelines on the pet food industry in the United States. While they do have some basic guidelines that must be met in order for a food to be classified as dog food, they aren’t exactly the most reliable source. Most of their recommendations are voluntary so companies can (and do) ignore them when it comes to processed dog foods. In fact, most of the foods that come with the AAFCO approval have been linked to health problems.
Instead look for the ingredients list. The shorter and more natural it is, the better. If you can’t find the ingredients anywhere, do some more research on the food either online or by talking with a vet.
Caring for your dog’s skin, hair and coat
Just like people, dogs can suffer from dry skin, hair and scalps. This can be caused by a variety of reasons such as allergies, oily skin, certain foods and even stress. This can lead to itching, hair loss and rashes, all of which can be prevented and treated by using the right shampoo.
Below are a few of the best shampoos for dogs that suffer from dry skin, hair loss or itchy scalps.
Earthbath Oatmeal & Aloe Dog Shampoo
Oatmeal has soothing properties which makes it great for treating dry skin and moisturizing the skin and fur. Aloe vera is also great for moisturizing the skin and is especially good for itchy, dry or irritated skin. If your dog suffers from itchiness, odor or oily skin, this is a great shampoo to try.
This shampoo lathers well, is easy to rinse and leaves your dog’s fur shiny and soft. Some users however have complained that their dogs developed irritation after using the shampoo.
Earthbath All Natural Dog Shampoo
This shampoo is slightly different than the one listed above as it does not contain any moisturizers. This means that it is good for treating oily skin but isn’t as suitable for dry skin.
The main ingredients in this shampoo are tea tree oil and pine oils. Tea tree oil is an effective fungicide and antimicrobial. It is also an effective insect repellent. This all natural shampoo makes a good deodorizer as well. If your dog has oily skin or smells bad, give this shampoo a try.
This shampoo lathers well, rinses easily and leaves fur smelling fresh and clean. Many users have reported that this shampoo worked wonders on their dogs’ skin conditions such as itchy, flaky skin and dry scalps.
Oliver & Mimi’s All Natural Deodorizing Dog Shampoo
This all natural shampoo is another great option for dogs with itchy or smelly skin. This shampoo is different than the others as it is heavily perfumed. Users report that this shampoo leaves their dog’s fur soft, shiny and smelling great.
Some users have complained however that this shampoo leaves behind a residue and can’t be fully rinsed out. It is also quite expensive compared to other shampoos.
The Best Grain Free Dog Food Brands
If you’ve done any research on what makes up a good diet for dogs, you’ve probably heard of the terms ‘grain free’ and ‘by-product’. These are important words to find in a dog food but there’s more to choosing a good food than that. You also need to make sure you’re getting everything your dog needs to stay healthy by looking at the ingredients list.
The first five or so ingredients are the main ingredients in a food. These are what makes up most of the food and should be high quality, meat protein or carbohydrate sources such as grains.
Grain free dog foods are great for dogs that may have allergies to grains but they’re no better than regular foods unless they have the right ingredients. Grains aren’t necessary a good source of carbohydrates anyway so grain free doesn’t always mean better.
Also, just because a food claims to be grain free, it doesn’t mean that all the ingredients are high quality. It’s still possible for there to be low quality fat and protein ingredients in these foods.
It’s always best to read the ingredients list as well as the guaranteed analysis to get a good idea of what you’re feeding your dog.
The Best Grain Free Dog Food Brands
Blue Buffalo is known for making high quality dog foods including many foods formulated for particular life stages, purposes and conditions such as skin and coat, weight management, large breed, young puppy, etc. Their Blue Natural Veterinary Diet Dog Food For Adult Skin And Stomach Health is grain free and has added glucosamine, chondroitin and antioxidants for healthy skin and a healthy digestive system. It contains mostly high quality proteins such as chicken and salmon as well as vegetables, oatmeal, flaxseed and cranberries.
Another food from the same company, also designed for healthy skin and a healthy digestive system, is the Blue Natural Veterinary Diet Dog Food Healthy Skin And Immune System Health. It has added vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and probiotics to enhance your dog’s skin as well as a healthy immune system. It also has high quality protein such as angus beef and lamb as well as vegetables, flaxseed, peas and apples.
Iams is a popular dog food brand that has foods suitable for all life stages including the Healthy Naturals line which is designed to mimic the natural diet of wolves. The formula contains lamb, chicken meal and whole grain barley to closely resemble the natural diet of wolves while excluding poultry by-products, corn, soy, wheat and artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.
The Iams also have foods with special additives to support your dog’s skin and coat health such as the Pro-Tech Veterinary Diets which have nutrients and oils to support healthy skin and a shiny coat. These diets also have antioxidants, vitamins and minerals to support your dog’s immune system. These diets come in several forms such as skin and coat, large breed, weight management and healthy puppy.
Nature’s Recipe also has several foods for different life stages and conditions. The Healthy Skin & Coat recipe uses lamb as the main protein along with peas, potatoes and natural antioxidants and vitamins to support your dog’s skin and coat. The Natural Whole Prey formula uses deboned chicken as the main protein source along with whole eggs for a highly nutritious food that resembles a natural prey diet. It also has fruits and vegetables for antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
Finally, the Nature’s Recipe Healthy Digestion formula uses a mixture of proteins including turkey, chicken and lamb as well as healthy fiber sources such as peas and barley to help your dog’s digestion. It also has natural probiotics and vitamins for a healthy digestive system.
The Worst Grain Based Dog Foods
I and my dog have found the following foods to cause stomach issues:
This food contains ingredients such as corn, wheat, and soy. Corn is a difficult to digest grain that causes a lot of gas. Wheat is also difficult to digest and often causes allergies and sinus issues. Soy is also a common allergen for dogs. Ingredients that are listed below are in order from most to least present in the food.
First 5 ingredients:
Corn gluten meal
Ingredients that can be problematic: Corn, Soy, Wheat
This is a low quality food with a first five ingredients that aren’t very appetizing and are of low quality. There are far better foods out there, without all the grains and fillers.
First 5 ingredients:
Chicken by-product meal
Whole grain corn
Whole grain wheat
Animal fat (uneatable)
Meat and bone meal (charcoal and other chemicals)
Ingredients that can be problematic: Whole Grains, Animal Fat, Meat & Bone Meal, Charcoal, Garlic Oil, Salt
This food is a mixture of low quality ingredients that are difficult for a dog to digest. There are better foods out there that are just as inexpensive if you shop around.
This is the worst of the Dog Chow varieties in my opinion. This food is very low quality and bad for your dog. It’s ingredients include: Ground Yellow Corn, Meat and Bone Meal, Soybean Hulls, Whole Wheat, Rice, Sugar, and Salt. There are more nutritious foods on the market so there is no reason to feed your dog this.
This is another very low quality food. It is made up of Ground Yellow Corn, Meat and Bone Meal, Whole Grain Wheat, Soybean Oil, and Salt. There are much better quality foods on the market now so there is no reason to buy this.
This food includes ingredients such as Ground Yellow Corn, Meat and Bone Meal, Whole Grain Wheat, Soybean Oil, and Salt. There are more nutritious foods out there so there is no reason to feed your dog this.
Sources & references used in this article:
- … You can find everything about Shih Tzu dogs. Best dog Food, Grooming tips and advice, Training and Health issues of Shih Tzu and other small breed dogs (A Conrad – shihtzuexpert.com)
- Paleo Dog: Give Your Best Friend a Long Life, Healthy Weight, and Freedom from Illness by Nurturing His Inner Wolf (H Jean, C Yarnall – 2014 – books.google.com)
- Best Dog Food Recipes: Natural & Healthy Homemade Recipes for Your Dog (M Rhetta – 2014 – books.google.com)
- Best Flea Collars For Dogs (M Story – thelabradorsite.com)
- Overview of the Scientific Evidence for Dog Probiotics (HYOB Friend – beneficialbacteria.net)
- The Beneficial Bacteria Site (HYOB Friend – beneficialbacteria.net)