Today's dog foods have gotten a face lift. You can serve your dog a blend of beef, lamb, chicken, and nutritious vegetables and grains, and all of which play a major role in providing balanced nutrition for your dog through all stages of his life. Though dry food has often been thought to be the healthier option, wet dog food is just as healthy too–here's why.
1. Easier to Chew
Many pet parents shy away from offering canned dog food to their pets. They're worried they aren't giving their dogs adequate nutrition, or that wet food harms a dog's teeth. A good-quality wet food can offer your pet balanced nutrition to support and maintain his health throughout all stages of life, and veterinarians say that feeding your dog wet dog food won't harm his teeth or gums. In fact, for older dogs with tooth or gum issues, wet food may be easier to eat than dry.
2. Healthier for Growing Dogs
When might wet food be better than dry? During puppyhood, when young dogs need more protein to help grow up strong, and typically wet foods contain more protein than dry food. Dry dog food contains more grains, such as corn, oats or other whole grains, which helps older dogs with healthy digestion.
3. Keeps Well
Brands of wet food such as Hill's® Science Diet® contain plentiful meat and vegetables that offer the vitamins and minerals your dog needs to stay healthy. Real beef, lamb, chicken, and wholesome grains and vegetables offer your dog a rewarding mealtime through these nutrients. Also, wet dog food can be stored longer than dry food-depending on expiration date; cans don't need preservatives to maintain their freshness.
When to Serve Dry
One reason to serve dried food over canned is because it can be easier to feed and ration. Dogs who bolt through their food may slow down slightly with kibble. Dry food can be purchased in larger bag sizes too, which can be more convenient for some pet parents. And if your dog is a grazer, dry food is a better fit as wet food will spoil within four hours after being served if left out. Kibble is easy to use in food puzzle toys to enrich your dog's life and satisfy him without overfeeding. If you do decide to feed kibble and wet dog food to your dog, look for high-quality foods such as Hill's Science Diet or Hill's® Ideal Balance®, whose dry kibble provides a high concentration of the most beneficial nutrients in each serving.
Why Not Both?
If you're worried your dog's canned food won't provide all the nutrients he needs under certain deficiencies, consider blended feeding. Blended feeding mixes wet food and dry into your dog's daily routine so he gets some of both each time he visits his bowl. Some pet parents choose to feed dry kibble in the morning and offer their dog a can of wet food at night. This covers all your bases, and provides your dog with some variety as well as a tasty treat.
Jeanne Grunert is a freelance writer, blogger and novelist. She lives and works on a 17-acre farm in Virginia along with her German shepherd, Shadow, along with six cats.