We’re all becoming more aware of ‘super foods’ that are packed with nutrients, vitamins and minerals and so are great for our health. And the same is true for dogs. Check out these all-natural pet food ingredients that you might not have heard are great for our four-legged friends.
We don’t tend to associate fruits with dog food, but mango is particularly beneficial for pooches of all breeds and sizes. Mango is high in fibre and besides being great for the digestive system, fibre will keep your dog feeling full for longer making it ideal for keeping weight down. Mango is also loaded with vitamin A, B6, C and E and is a great natural alternative to pet supplements. As mango is sweet, it makes for a change from meaty treats. Ripe mango flesh is soft and easy to eat making it a good choice for elderly dogs too.
It might sound like a curveball but people have given dogs deer antlers to chew for thousands of years. Most deer antlers for pets are no longer from hunted animals. They’re simply those that have fallen off naturally during the rutting season. Antlers don’t splinter and leave sharp edges. They’re also tough making for hours of chewing and are rich in calcium and vitamins. Deer antler has long been a staple of Chinese medicine and is used to treat a variety of diseases, as a revitalising tonic and to treat problems that occur in older age. It might just give your ageing pooch a new lease of life. Try whole antlers for a long-lasting chew or split antlers for maximum benefit as the nutritious marrow is more exposed.
All dogs are naturally predisposed to chew. It keeps their teeth and gums healthy and helps puppies when they’re teething. Chewing also provides stimulation and can relieve boredom, stress and anxiety. Olivewood is safe, clean and surprisingly tasty (it has quite a mild, smoky taste) when chewed. Olivewood is great for doggy dental hygiene and helps prevent the buildup of tartar. Good quality olivewood chews are harvested from sustainably managed olive trees and as the wood is particularly hard, it makes for hours of gnawing pleasure.
Tuber roots come from certain plants and trees. Because plants use them to store significant amounts of food, tuber roots are exceptionally nutritious and good for dogs. As the tuber root is chewed, vitamins and minerals are released. They’re also very thick, making for excellent chewability and tuber roots are quite tasty for dogs with a slightly woody, sweet flavour. Tuber root chews provide hours of fun and distraction and are a fantastic natural toothbrush. You can’t just offer any tuber root to a dog as some varieties are toxic, so only buy those specially sourced for pets, such as a natural dog chew from wildthought.co.uk.