Digestion Problems? Inflammation? Diarrhea? Food Allergies?
How to know if your dog's treats are potentially causing digestive issues.
If you are feeding your dog commercially processed treats there may be something in them that is causing your dog digestive distress.
For right now I want you to consider why some of these ingredients are being added to commercial dog treats. Most of them are to enhance flavor, extend shelf life, or add nutrition to ingredients that are not nutrient-dense to make them appear more healthy.
Common dog food and treat fillers have been known to cause digestion problems, inflammation, diarrhea, and food allergies in our pets.
What is a filler? What does this mean? A filler is something that has been added to your dog's (or cat's) food to help them feel "full" but contains little to no nutritional value. Fillers basically "take up space" in a recipe so that less of a premium ingredient needs to be used and costs can be cut. Some fillers can actually be harmful to your dog or cat, especially over time. Fillers such as soy or corn can cause allergies or sensitive reactions in our pets.
Fillers, also known as "flavor enhancers" or texture "additives" are often added to make heavily processed food taste or smell appealing. A popular one is Propylene Glycol, a solvent found in antifreeze that is used to help keep pet food and treats from drying out.
Some common fillers include:
Soy: this filler is responsible for a huge portion of pet allergies that can result in sneezing, itching, swelling, anaphylactic shock, and death.
Beet pulp: while this can provide a good source of fiber, beet pulp has been known to plug the intestinal villus.
Animal by-products: These are the "left-overs" once an animal has been prepared for human consumption. Ingredients listed as chicken, beef, poultry, and animal by-products are not required to include actual meat.
Animal fat: Obtained from the tissues of animals during rendering or extracting and generally comes from an unknown origin. BHA, an artificial preservative suspected of causing cancer, may be used to preserve animal fat.
Corn Gluten: An inexpensive by-product of human food processing that offers very little nutritional value and serves mainly to bind food together. It is not a harmful ingredient but should be avoided simply for its poor nutritional value and quality.
Brewers Rice: processed rice that is missing many of the nutrients contained in whole-ground rice and brown rice. Contrary to what many pet food companies want you to believe, this is not a high-quality ingredient, just much cheaper than whole grain rice.
Fillers are usually found in lower-quality dog treats, where wholesome quality ingredients are sacrificed for quantity or cost.
Does your dog's treats have any of these common fillers? Are they suffering from Digestion Problems? Inflammation? Diarrhea? Food Allergies?
Please, check with your vet if you have questions about the ingredients in your dog's treats or food and if there is a link to their health issues. Always consult with your vet before making any changes to your pet's diet. I always research to the best of my ability, but I am not a vet. This blog is not in any way meant to replace veterinary advice or care. When in doubt, always ask a vet.
Some people may think that whole grains, like the whole wheat flour and Oat flour I use in Cindy's K9 Treats are added as a filler. But that is simply not true.
Whole grains offer a natural source of protein, carbohydrates, fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Small amounts of wheat flour can be a great addition to any dog's diet; it helps them stay healthy and gives them the protein they need to grow. Wheat flour can help dogs' coats become shinier and healthier. Wheat flour is a great alternative to other carbohydrate-rich foods such as rice or potatoes.
Oat flour is also an excellent choice for making dog treats. It is gluten-free, and low in sugar, and flour. Most dogs can tolerate it well. Oat flour is packed with essential antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals like Vitamin B1, B6, Copper, Folate, Iron, Manganese, Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Selenium, and Zinc.
Next time I will take a dive into Artificial Preservatives. What they are, why they are used and why you should avoid giving these to your dogs.
If you have never tried Cindy's K9 Treats, please click the link below to request a FREE trial-size bag of treats. You can choose which flavor you want your dog to try and all you have to do is pay the $2.00 shipping fee. I ship to any address in South Dakota.