Written by Janet Roussos
There's lots of questions around which type of dog food you should get, how often to feed and what kind of dog treats are best? If we as humans watch the kind and quality of food we eat, why would that be any different for our rescue dogs? It absolutely should not.
Our rescue dogs may have come from a shelter or less than ideal location before they got to us. Some may even have been malnourished or underfed, and just as worse, fed that crappy mass produced store food with corn, fillers and chemically produced junk not meant for good canine health.
We had a Weimaraner for 11 years and learned as much as we could about the Weimaraner's digestive system. They, like other breeds, do have a sensitive digestive system and are prone to bloat. We wanted to make sure we fed him the right balance of nutrients. We asked our vet, family, friends and didn't seem to nail this down.
Finally, after some solid research we came up with the best dog food for our Weim - a grain free dry kibble, Six Fish by Orijen. Just take a look at the ingredientsI listed - at the very top of the list you have actually six types of fish actually in the dog food - wow what a concept! Further down the list you'll see other grain free actual foods like collard greens, whole butternut squash, kale, spinach apples and pumpkin seeds. This stuff is real food.
It can be pretty pricey, but we found our 73 pound Weimaraner would consume a 30 pound bag of food within a two month period of time. Orijen has loads of others in its line. This particular recommendation is for adult dogs, though there are plenty of others for puppies and seniors.
For more information on how to feed your dog or what to feed your dog, I wrote an article on how to feed your new rescue dog.
I recommend the Orijen because they offer a much wider variety of bag sizes: 12oz, 4.5 pound, 13 pound, and 25 pound bags are available. I opted for the 25 pound bag, but this largely depends on the size of your dog and his or her activity level of course.
I do have one other dog food recommendation which I have given to my dogs, and that is Blue Wilderness, which is also a grain-free dog food - here's a list of the Blue Wilderness with chicken
Blue Wilderness is a grain free dog food, and while they do not offer the same number of bag sizes Orijen does, they have a variety of types of dog food. For example, this particular type is with chicken, but they do also offer salmon, and duck just to add more variety.
The bag sizes are 4.5 pound, 11 pound and 24 pound bag sizes. The cost is $52.98 for a 24 pound bag - so a pretty good savings there.
You might want to buy a small bag of one, test it out on your dog, see how they like it. Not all dogs like all dog foods. Keep that in mind as you food shop for your doggies.
Just as important as the dog food you choose, are the dog treats you select. First, though, I want to make sure you avoid some pretty bad treats. Start by avoiding those awful pig's ears you might see in the supermarket. They are bad for a lot of reasons, but the most important reason is really one of safety. I've bought these - we all may have tried these in the past. But, I remember giving them to my Weimaraner, Cosmo, and he would get them caught in his throat and hack the thing up. It's a piece of cartilage - a really stupid "treat" and have since stopped ever buying those for any dog I know.
You might need some treats for training and those are different from what you might fill up your kong with. Here's a few good dog training treats you might like to try. Once again, try to steer clear of the processed filled treats like the Milk Bone Flavor dog treats - junk food for dogs.
Instead, try this recommendation.... Yep, Blue has some awesome and very healthy training treats.
You can find these for about $7.00 a bag - yes, not cheap if you're doing lots of training, but much healthier than your crappy cardboard box of Milk Bone Dog biscuits from the grocery store.
If you're more interested in a healthy make your own snack - there's loads of those. Here's a great list of 25 dog treats you can make at home - be creative, but make them safe and healthy!
I will make sure to keep you updated on what my top picks are for food or treats ongoing as we test new foods and treats.