As human, protein is very essential for your dogs. The Difference is, dogs require more protein than humans.
Interestingly enough, protein hasn’t always been the focus of dog food. Wikipedia has several examples from the 1800s that show a dog food focus on cheese, milk, buttermilk, oats, barley-meal, potatoes, and animal fat. Dog food has come a significantly long way. Now, dog food companies are concerned with dog food protein and the many different ingredients are needed to come up with a pet food product that matches the amino acids that a dog requires.
These can all be synergized by using various different food combinations. Some experts feel that because dogs are direct descendants of wolves, that their protein requirement is one hundred percent meat-based. There is one more argument that dogs are natural scavengers and will eat basically anything, whether it is a protein or not. Still, some others feel that with the domestication of dogs, and the fact that they have been living with humans for thousands of years, that they have evolved into incomplete carnivores. And there are more opinions beyond those as well.
Dogs are built to take in more than just meat, the meats that go into regular commercial dog food are something that should be thoroughly comprehended. This subject is extremely broad, and here I am trying to do my best to touch on the major points. There is an incredible wealth of information on this topic and some of it is rather frightening.
Some of the dog foods available in the market, tend to be comprised of one meat product and several other items that are generally carbs or meat by-products. The first five ingredients listed on the side of a bag of dog food tend to be a basic summary of 95% of its contents. This is ok, but the issue is when pet food companies embellish the value of the product within the basket. Any of the dog owner should pay close attention to these items, and the way the items are placed and worded on the package.
Some people have felt that serving their dogs “human grade” food is a proper solution to all of their dog food needs. With meat in general, the first 50% of a slaughtered animal that can be used is considered to be “human grade.” A lot of pet food companies use the words “human-grade” as a catch-all phrase to make some of their food sound better than it really is. While the idea of a “human grade” food is a great one, but it isn’t absolute.
It is misleading to say that a food is human-grade. This term means that, the food is good enough to be consumed by humans. This has little to do with the processing of the product. The term “made with human-grade ingredients” doesn’t mean that the end product is human grade. In short, the processing of human-grade meat could in fact be something that wouldn’t be healthy for human consumption at all. The AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials) doesn’t even have a definition of “human grade” ingredients.
Some key items that are found in the online market pet food are animal leftovers that cannot be sold at the local grocery store. These items of the animal are usually the brains, bones, eyeballs, blood, intestines, lungs, spleens, livers, ligaments, membranes, and fat trimmings. These leftovers are called “by-products” and tend to get used in pet foods. A good thing to know about animal by products is that hair, horns, hooves, beaks, and feathers aren’t a part of the equation. As a general rule of thumb, higher-end pet foods don’t even use meat by-products.
When someone search for the animal by-product list in the AAFCO website, the results could be considered encouraging. An example of this would be 4D meat (dead, diseased, dying, or disabled) is considered “adulterated” and shouldn’t be included in pet food unless it has been treated to a point where all dangerous microorganisms have been removed. Obviously, dog food with meat by-products as the main ingredient is inferior to one that has specific meat and then a by-product listed afterward.
In the pet food, various meat meals are having extremely common ingredients. The reason the word “meal” is used is that the food is not necessarily fresh. It is also meat that has been rendered. Rendering means that the meat has been pulled apart in such a way that oil and fat are separated from the flesh through a serious boiling in a cauldron or vat. 4D foods are used much more readily with meals. Once again, they are cooked in such a way that all dangerous microorganisms are killed or removed.
The next important point is the fact that the dog food is broken into single and multiple protein products. What it means? It means that a single protein is form of meat. Multiple proteins (such as beef and turkey) would be considered to be two or more meats. Some feel that there is no sensible reason to give an animal a single-protein food. With multiple protein sources, the dog gets several different amino acids from each meat product. By running two proteins in tandem in dog food, the right amino acid mix is easier to make. Furthermore, multiple proteins mean that fewer fillers are required, fewer fillers mean less bulk on your animal and an easier product to digest.
One of the major debating point among the experts for grain within the dog food is that a dog’s requirement of amino acids can be achieved through various mixes and matches of meat and grain products. The argument is usually about the quality of the meat and grain products used. One shouldn’t forget that there is a slight protein ranking within grains such as corn, soy, and oats.
Allergies is the main key factor to choose dog food. There is a high percentage of dogs that have food allergies. Corn is such a common additive, that some feel its constant inclusion with dog food has made it a regular culprit for dog food allergies. Soy is another culprit. Some feel that the number of dogs with food allergies may be as high as twenty percent, others ground the figure somewhere well below ten percent.
Same like grains, dogs can have allergy of some meats. Some standard meat allergies that dogs have are chicken and beef, which are two of the main meats in most dog foods. There are solutions available though. Lamb, duck, venison, and turkey are other relatively safe alternatives. Lamb used to be the hypoallergenic cure-all, but dogs of late have been showing up with allergies towards this meat product as well. Bringing in these new ingredients might be what your dog needs and chances are that if the newer food has venison or lamb in it, your dog will be just fine with it.
Dog food protein should be a key element in your dog food shopping process. No matter how you feel about a dog’s ancestry, it is good to know the definitions of the proteins and multiple proteins that are in your pet’s food. There are countless different opinions, facts, and figures out there on the internet that will help you to be the well-informed pet-owner that your dog will appreciate.
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