The best doggy diets are the ones that contain a good mix of nutrients.
Yes, a dog does need carbohydrates as part of a balanced diet. Proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals all contribute to well-rounded diets that put plenty of wag in our furry friends’ tails.
Carbs provide our pets with the energy they need for up and active lifestyles.
Their bodies break down the macronutrient into glucose which is then used to fuel daily adventures.
Carbs also go hand-in-hand with fiber. In fact, fiber is a type of carb.
Fiber is vital for taking care of our dogs’ tummies; promoting regular toilet trips, and even helping relieve constipation or diarrhea.
Healthy fiber-rich foods include pumpkin, carrots, apples and brown rice.
It’s not really possible for dogs to have a zero carbohydrate diet because the nutrient can actually be found in high-protein meat.
We do need to be careful where our pets get their carbs from though, with some sources a lot healthier than others.
What is a safe amount of carbs for dogs?
Balance is key when it comes to dogs and their diet.
Every dog is different, with differing tastes and varying levels of activity.
This makes it extremely difficult when recommending an exact amount of nutrients.
According to the National Research Council’s ‘Nutrient Requirements of Dogs and Cats’ study, carbs are not even considered an essential nutrient for dogs.
Another study – ‘Macronutrient intake of dogs, self-selecting diets varying in composition offered ad libitum’ – goes on to state that dogs actually prefer diets that are low in carbs, and high in fat and protein.
Although dogs may not need carbs to survive, and possibly even favor recipes loaded with other nutrients, this does not mean they are without benefit.
Emphasis though needs to be on quality over quantity.
Eating too many carbs can fire up our furry friends a little too much.
This is because high carb numbers can sometimes lead to a spike in blood sugar levels driving energy levels through the roof.
Not ideal if you already have a pooch who rarely sits still.
Risk of obesity is another factor that needs to be taken into account when having a carb conversation. Surges in blood sugar make it more difficult for dogs to maintain healthy levels of weight and/or body fat.
That being said, a high-fiber doggy diet should leave your four-legged friend feeling fuller for longer, making it a great tool for supporting weight loss.
This goes to show just how delicate the balancing act is. And highlights the importance of monitoring your pooch’s daily food intake, as well as their response to it.
What to be aware of when combining foods
A high-quality diet is essential if we want our pets to thrive.
At Applaws, we recommend feeding dogs a mix of dry and wet foods.
This is a fantastic way of keeping your four-legged friends interested in mealtime, combining different tastes and textures as well as introducing them to a wider range of nutrients.
Our exciting Taste Toppers range takes this thinking even further.
Taste Toppers were designed to complement your dog’s favorite dry food by adding the highest quality ingredients, along with the richest flavors, to their dinner menu.
Each recipe offers different protein, fruits, vegetables and pulses in a variety of meal choices.
Always take your time when adding new ingredients to a dog’s bowl.
On the back of each Taste Toppers pack you will see our recommended portion size. Remember to reduce the amount of dry food accordingly, too, in order to balance their calorie intake.
If you have any concerns about your dog’s nutrition, contact your vet who will be able to provide advice.