It’s important to consider many different things when choosing the best protein for your dog. This includes allergies, sensitivities, weight issues, health problems and more. Different proteins function in your pet's body in different ways. When deciding on the best protein for dogs, it’s crucial to consider the benefits of each protein and how they can best serve your dog's needs. Protein is essential when it comes to your dog’s diet, as it contains essential amino acids, and without protein, your dog can run into a variety of health problems such as lack of energy, poor immune systems, and in many cases, their coats will lose their shine and become lifeless. With this in mind, let’s take a look at the different high-quality protein sources available and their benefits and contribution to a balanced diet and the overall health and well-being of your pup.
Protein Content in Dog Food
Many different pet food brands contain different sources of proteins and amounts of protein. However, what some don’t realize is the amount of protein within these commercial dog foods is quite sparse, or they accompany a variety of different additives and fillers that can be harmful to your pup. So while these dog food brands might insist their food contains the best protein sources for your dog, its important to take a deeper dive into the other ingredients listed and consider whether or not those foods are suitable for your pup (because, in many cases, they’re really not). This is why we encourage pet parents to try creating their own dog food plan that incorporates various meat sources with whole, high-quality, human-grade foods. In doing this, you can create a high-protein diet for your dog with the satisfaction of knowing exactly what is going into their body and how much.
Benefits of creating your own protein-rich dog food
There are many benefits that come with creating your own homemade dog food, and using your own knowledge to develop high-protein dog food that’s safe for your pup and meets all of their needs will benefit the health and wellness of your dog in the long run. In testing out which protein works best for your dog, you can ensure they will be meeting the nutrient and health needs that most dry dog food and kibble are missing. For example, in creating your own diet plan and choosing your own protein, you can cater to picky eaters or your dog’s food allergies, stomach sensitivities (such as gluten) and activity levels.
So what are the best proteins for dogs?
Some of the most common healthy protein sources for dogs are beef, turkey, chicken, lamb, duck, venison, rabbit and fish. Each of these proteins serves a different purpose in your dog’s life, some better than others, depending on your dog’s needs and wants.
So, let’s break some of these down.
Benefits of Lamb
Lamb is a great source of protein that contains the right amount of dietary fats your dog needs in their diet to support its growth and overall health. Lamb is also a great source of iron & Omega-3 fatty acids. Further, one of the main benefits of lamb is that it is a great source of animal protein for dogs with food allergies. Many dogs are allergic to protein sources such as beef or chicken, so mixing in a new protein source such as lamb proves to be beneficial as it is typically protein dogs are not as exposed to, making it less likely for them to be allergic to the protein. Moreover, dogs love the taste of lamb, making it a picky eater-approved protein as well!
Benefits of Beef
Beef is another great protein source that serves great benefits to dogs and specifically to active dogs. This is because beef is a high-quality source of protein that contains many essential fats that leave your pup feeling fuller and more energized for longer. Further, beef helps your dog build muscle mass and the vitamins and minerals within the protein help keep your pup’s coat and skin healthy.
Benefits of Turkey
Turkey is one of the most common meats found in dog food recipes and is one of the more lean and highly digestible proteins for dogs. Turkey is rich in protein but fairly low in fat and contains phosphorus which supports healthy kidney function in dogs and helps flush out any toxins through urine. Further, due to turkeys’ ease in digestibility and high protein-low fat contents, it can be one of the best protein sources for helping your dog shed some extra pounds.
Benefits of Chicken
Chicken, like turkey, is a lean, low-calorie protein packed with omega-6 fatty acids. Since protein is the main energy source for dogs, chicken provides dogs with a great energy source without a large calorie count. Plus, the omega-6 fatty acids found in chicken help sustain healthy skin and shiny coats in our furry friends.
So, even though dogs are omnivores, they rely heavily on protein sources to thrive in their daily lives, and choosing the right protein source for your pup is essential to creating a healthy, happy and sustainable life for your pup. However, as we know, dogs need more than just protein in their diets, and when first starting out, cooking for your pup can be challenging and daunting. Our dog child meal mixes are a great way to start cooking protein for your dog while still getting them all of the nutrients and supplements they need in their diets. Our meal mixes have been created to ease the worry of home cooking for your pup while also ensuring they are the healthiest they can be. Each meal mix can be combined with either chicken, beef, turkey or lamb to create the most balanced meal for your pup.
Head over to our shop tab and try out a meal mix today!