Choosing dog food for your dog can feel like getting lost in the jungle; not knowing which fruit to eat and which to stay away from, and there are many lessons to be learned in the process of finding the perfect product. It doesn’t become easier with so many different brands available and so many different dog foods to choose from, and to further complicate things – you need to decide on feeding wet or dry food to your favorite fur pup! But is wet dog food or dry dog food the better choice? And does it make a difference if your pup’s dinner comes in a bag or in a can? It is important to know the pros and cons of each option so that you can make an educated choice for your furry family members.
Dry Food Benefits
Dry food, also known as kibble, is a popular dog food type all over the planet. It contains about 6-10% moisture (measured by volume), compared to the 60-90% of canned dog food, and is sold in bags. There are hundreds of different kibble types; some you find in grocery stores (usually lower quality brands), others in pet shops and online, and there are different varieties available to suit different dogs and their variating needs. You can get a smaller sized dry food; where each piece is smaller than the average product, for small dogs and toy breeds and larger pieces for the family Saint Bernard. There are many cheap and affordable dog food brands, and also many that are a lot pricier.
One benefit of dry dog food is the positive effect it has on the dog’s teeth and oral health. Chewing on crunchy kibble can help clean the teeth by removing plaque and tartar, it gently massages the gums to keep them in shape. Thanks to these advantages, dogs that eats dry dog food tend to have better breath than a dog that eats nothing but canned food, and it is good to be aware of it since many dog breeds are prone to dental problems and mouth issues. This does not necessarily mean that kibble is better than canned food, but it is one of the reasons to why many veterinarians recommend that you feed your pup a dry or mixed diet, if possible, since oral problems can be difficult to reverse once they are present.
Kibble is also easier to store than wet food, since it does not need to be refrigerated, and it won’t leave a mess when your dog eats. You can store large bags of kibble basically anywhere in the house (assuming it is dry, and that it is in a place that does not get too hot), and it rarely expires as it is made with a process that keeps the ingredients fresh for a long time. This is great for owners of small dogs, for example, because it means you can buy a large bag (which is often cheaper) without having to worry about it going bad before your pup can finish it.
Those who travel or spend a lot of time out of the house with their dog also tend to favor kibble over canned food. This is because dry dog food is easier to transport, and it can be kept in your pocket and used as rewarding treats for outdoor play sessions and during training.
Benefits of Wet Food
Wet canned dog food is very popular especially among smaller dogs (since it can get a bit pricey to feed only wet food to a large dog), and many see it as a solution to a picky-eater problem. Wet food contains up to 90% water, which makes it blander and more meat-like in its consistency, and it tends to have a stronger and more prominent smell than dry dog food products. It is not so hard to understand why many dogs prefer it – taste wise – if they get to choose.
Something great about wet food is that it is ideal for dogs with few or no teeth (senior dogs being one example), those who struggle to chew or have very small mouths, and it saves you the trouble of having to soak the kibble in water before being able to serve it. As mentioned in the above section, kibble has the benefit of being great for a dog’s teeth, but not all dogs can chew without extreme effort or accompanied by discomfort and pain, and for these dogs, a wet and bland food option can greatly improve their quality of life.
As long as you stick to quality dog food brands, there isn’t much of a nutritional difference between dry dog food and canned dog food. Many of the most respected dog food brands make their best-selling products both as kibble and wet food so that you can have the choice of what you wish to feed. Always choose wisely, however, regardless of whether you are shopping for dry dog food or a canned delight.
How to Choose?
It is hard to say what is right and what is wrong when it comes to feeding a dog, and it is up to you to decide what you feel the most comfortable with, and what you think is right for your pup. Today, there is no difference between wet and dry dog food in terms of quality, considering you do your research and choose a good brand, and it is more a question of personal preference.
Wet dog food can also be used as a kibble topping, instead of choosing one over the other. For picky eaters, a spoon or two of wet food on top- or mixed in with the dry food might be enough to convince them to gulp it all down. This means that you don’t actually have to choose if you don’t want to, and it is one of those rare occasions where you can have both.
Many experts recommend that you feed dry dog food if your dog can and will eat it, mostly due to the benefits of improved oral health, but if you rather feed your pup something delicious from a can – go for it! You can always compensate by providing healthy chew treats, or by brushing the dog’s teeth a couple of extra times a week. Choose what feels right for you, and what feels right for your furry friend, and you can’t go wrong.
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