Where do you turn to get information about feeding your pet? The breeder or shelter? Your veterinarian? Television ads?

I’m learning a lot from pet lovers, dog trainers and pet business owners. In addition, a friend recently sent me a copy of this book, The Ultimate Pet Food Guide by Liz Palika. The author is a veteran dog trainer and behaviorist, and has written more than 65 books about dogs and other pets, including The Ultimate Dog Treat Cookbook.

6 Things I Learned From This Book:

1. Dogs have taste buds on their tongues like humans, and can get addicted to the taste of sugar just as people can. If we feed our dogs lots of sweets, not only is it fattening and unhealthy, but the dog may reject healthier food. Hey, I’d prefer to eat chocolate sundaes all day if given the chance!

2. Lots of diets today focus on the Glycemic Index. This is not just for people–it’s important for our pets too. Food with a low GI (apple, barley, kidney beans, oatmeal) help provide more balanced sugar levels and help keep behavior stable too. If your pet has a behavior problem, it’s important to review their diet, in addition to other factors.

3. If you choose to go for the convenience of commercial dog food, it’s really, really important to choose a premium quality food, made with superior ingredients in the best processing conditions possible. This still may not be satisfactory for some people, but for others it is an acceptable choice.

4. Another option is to add quality home prepared foods to quality commercial food. Decrease the amount of commercial food and add some fresh turkey, carrots, pumpkin or cottage cheese.

5. When considering raw diet, the author raised some concerns but also praised Dr. Billinghursts BARF Combo fresh frozen patties as an excellent option in this area.

6. Make any changes to your dog’s diet gradually. Watch for signs of upset stomach. Keep a food journal with the date, your dog’s weight, health, skin and coat condition, and mental condition.

What are your thoughts? What do you feed your dog?

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*Join us Monday for more Dog Food Month and a look at canine obesity.