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How to Read A Dog Food Label

How to Read A Dog Food Label

The dog food nutrition label aims to help you compare products as well as learn more about the food. But, you may find it difficult to decipher. To help you learn more about the dog food label, we are here. Check out this post to understand how to use it.

Check the Guaranteed Analysis

This analysis makes sure the dog food contains the labeled percentages of fat, fiber, protein, and moisture. In fact, wet and dry dog foods come with different standards. It’s important to convert wet food to dry food. This helps to compare two different types of food. Also, you can visit your vet for the low-down.

Look for Dog Food that Fits

You can determine what food fits your dog through size-specific formulas. If you have toy dogs, you should choose the food labeled “Small breed formula”. On the contrary, if you have a large breed puppy, you need to feed him nutrients to minimize diseases such as arthritis for a big dog down the road.

Check for Allergy Needs

You need to know if your dog has an allergy. One of the most common food allergies in dogs and cats are Hughes cites beef and dairy. The best allergy for the dog is wheat. We recommend you to avoid choosing the food with wheat or gluten. To verify this, you can scan the ingredient list the first time when you purchase to make sure.

Look For The Protein

Ingredients of dog foods are listed by weight, and they start with the heaviest on the food label. Your dog normally needs plenty of good protein sources in his diet such as chicken, fish, beef, and lamb. So, it’s important to check for them within the first few label ingredients. You should choose dog foods that offer chicken meal because they include more protein than fresh chicken. It’s also the same as beef, lamb, as well as fish. If you see chicken meal or beef meal are on the ingredient list, you can make sure your pet can get the right amount of protein.

Figure Out Flavor ingredients

You should look for dog foods coming with beef flavoring. They can be able to help your dog look more favorably with some foods. So, if you want to give your dog foods richer taste, you should give them a meatier. But, these foods are normally made from additional flavorings unnecessary. That’s why you need to make sure proteins are in the first few ingredients. When choosing foods for your dog, you should look at foods for specifics like beef flavoring, not meat flavoring. Indeed, these foods give a better idea their origins.

Look for Daily Doggie Serving Size

For every pet owner, daily feeding recommendations on packaging are very useful. In addition, you don’t forget to ask your vet for the right portion size for your dog. At the same time, you need to reference the American Animal Hospital Association National Guidelines. By this way, you can determine the nutrients your dog has.

Determine AAFCO Nutrient Profile

When going for dog foods, you can see one of two AAFCO labels such as “Adult Maintenance” as well as “All Life Stages”. If you are looking for foods for a growing puppy, you need to look at All Life Stages. These foods offer higher in calories, phosphorus, and calcium. On the other hands, you need to feed adult pets “adult maintenance” foods.

Look for the Nutritional Adequacy Statement

Make sure dog foods you buy have to meet minimum nutrition requirements. Also, they have to be suitable for each specific life stage. More importantly, choose a food that can be able to meet the minimum nutritional requirements defined feeding trial. In addition, they also can offer the formulated nutrients.

Be Caution with Supplemental Food Sources

You shouldn’t choose dog foods labeled “supplemental”. These foods are not complete as well as balanced. If you don’t have a specific need for it, you shouldn’t feed your dog for a long time. It’s best to consult with your vet if you are in doubt.


In conclusion, it’s important to look for the best food for your pet’s health and longevity. But, you may be confused by deciphering pet food. Just by reading the dog food label properly, you can choose the right foods for your type of pet.

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