Nutrients are substances resulted from food and used by your pet as a source of energy. It is also a component of the metabolic system needed for maintenance and growth. There are six essential classes of nutrients any dog needs in order to live a healthy life. Below we’ve listed the top nutrients your dog needs.
Top nutrients your dog needs
Fundamental to life, water stands for between 60 to 70% of an adult pet’s body weight. And if food may be accounted of your pet’s water needs (dry food has up to 10% moisture, while canned food has up to 78% moisture); pets need to have fresh clean water available at their disposal. A lack of water may have serious impact for animals. A 10% decrease in body water can determine serious illness, while a 15% loss can even mean death for your pet.
Fat is the most concentrated form of food energy. It offers your pet more than double the energy that proteins or carbohydrates give. Fats are vital in the structure of cells, and are necessary for generating some hormones. Dogs also need fats for absorption and usage of certain vitamins. Fats also give insulation and protection for internal organs. A shortage of essential fatty acids (like the linoleic acid) may have consequences such as: reduced growth or increased skin problems.
The foundation for cells, tissues, organs, enzymes, hormones and antibodies, and are fundamental for growth, maintenance, reproduction and reconstruction. Proteins can be received from a number of sources including various animal-based meats like chicken, turkey, lamb, fish, beef and eggs (eggs offer complete amino acid profiles) and in cereals, vegetables, cereals or soy (these on the other hand are considered incomplete proteins).
Note: Do not feed your pets raw eggs. Raw eggs white have avidin, an anti-vitamin that obstruct with the metabolism of fats, glucose, amino acids and energy.
Small amounts of vitamins are important for dogs in order for their normal metabolic functioning. A lot of the vitamins cannot be synthesized in the body, and thus are important to be a part of the diet.
Remember that if you offer your dog a balanced and complete diet it is not necessary to feed your animal vitamin supplements only if there is a deficiency diagnosed by a vet. Because of over supplementation, it is more common in present to see poisoning due to excess vitamins (hypervitaminosis) than vitamin deficiency (hypovitaminosis). Vitamin D excess my cause very dense bones, kidney failure and even soft tissue calcification. Dry skin, brittle bones and joint pain are results of vitamin A excess.
Carbs offer energy, have a vital role for the intestine health, and are important for reproduction. Even if there is no minimum carbohydrate prerequisite, there is a minimum glucose necessary need in order to supply energy for critical organs like the brain.
Fibers are types of carbohydrates that modify the bacterial population in the small intestine, that can help manage chronic diarrhea in dogs. The fiber source has to be moderately fermentable in order for dogs to get the most benefit from fibers. Moderately fermentable fibers (like beet pulp, that is often found in dog foods) are suitable to promote a healthy gut; and that while bypassing the unwanted side effects of highly fermentable fibers (eg: flatulence and excess mucus).
We can also name other moderately fermentable fibers like brans (corn, rice and wheat) and wheat middlings. Aliments that are high in fiber are not suitable for dogs with high energy requirements who are young and growing.
Minerals are supplements that animals cannot synthesize by animals and you need to introduce them in the diet. Generally, minerals are structural constituents of bones and teeth. They are also most important for maintaining fluid balance and for their involvement in lots of metabolic reactions.
If you want to read more about Homemade Pet Food for Dogs read this article.