There are thousands of diets for humans... and dogs too! Here are five dog food diet options for the pooch in your life.
Raw dog food
Looking to go really natural with Fido? Put him on a raw food diet. Like grain-free, the philosophy behind a raw food diet is to put your dog back on his ancestral diet. That means raw meat, bones and organs — the whole animal. While the benefits for your pooch are lengthy (including better skin, bones, and coat), there are a few negative side effects. Although dogs are not as prone to them as humans, they can still contract food-borne illnesses — a consideration to be weary of when opting for a raw food diet.
Grain-free dog food
Giving your dog a grain-free diet is similar to putting yourself on the Paleo diet. And for good reason, owners choose grain-free dog food because the chow is made entirely of a dog's ancestral diet. (Just like the Paleo philosophy for humans.) Like humans, grains can be difficult for a dog to digest due to the location of the enzyme used to break them down; only dogs' enzymes are lower than humans! Because of this, grains can be a leading cause of doggie allergies.
Put your pooch on this diet if you want him to follow the same clean eating routine as his owner or if you see problems with your regular food choice.
Low protein dog food
Many pet owners believe that as their dog ages, they should look into changing their dog's diet to low protein. While you should look into changing your elderly dog's diet as he ages, a low protein diet may not be the answer. Now available by prescription, low-protein food should be given to dogs with only certain medical conditions.
Consult your vet if you believe this is the right diet for your pup before feeding him low protein.
Low-fat dog food
Think your dog should shed a few pounds? Low-fat dog food may not be the right answer. Created for dogs dealing with medical conditions including obesity, some low-fat dog food brands have less protein and more carbs. Sounds like a recipe for weight gain rather than weight loss. When looking to shed pounds on your pup, take him for a walk and ensure that the fat content in your low-fat dog food purchase is actually less than his regular brand.
Hypoallergenic dog food
Like humans, not all dogs are created equal; some are born with food intolerance and some are not. For the dogs that are, look to feed him a hypoallergenic brand of dog food. Made with limited ingredients, hypoallergenic dog foods are made to leave out the key ingredients that most dogs are intolerant to. On the flip side, dogs may become allergic to ingredients in their food over time. For this reason, pet food makers also created brands with only novel ingredients, as it is likely the dog hasn't had an overexposure to what they put inside the kibble.
More on doggie diets