Dry food, BARF, raw food, complete food, veterinary diets... There are many different types of dog food and it can be hard to know which option is the most suitable for your dog. Here we explain what the different types mean to make it easier for you as a pet parent to choose.

Complete food

You have probably come across the term "complete food", but what does it really mean? A complete food means that the food contains all the nutrients your dog needs and in the right balance, ie the right proportion of protein, fat, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins. If the dog receives the correct dosage of a good complete food (and is a healthy individual) it does not need extra supplements. Complete food comes in different forms: as dry food, wet food and raw food diets.

Classification of complete food according to food type

  • Dry food: The most common type of food on the market that is available in many different varieties and developed to suit different kinds of needs. An advantage of dry food is that it has a long shelf life, is easy to handle and store and does not contain unwanted bacteria. The food is produced through a process where the ingredients are mixed, dried and pressed into kibbles, while ensuring that the nutrients remain. The complete food that petgood offers falls under this category, it is a dry food that is currently offered in two variants; for adult dogs and puppies. Our food is based on insects, which is the only animal protein source in the recipe. In addition to the insects our dog food contains other carefully selected, high quality ingredients. Our products are developed with veterinarians and nutritionists to ensure an optimal nutritional profile. The formula is developed according to nutritional recommendations from FEDIAF, an organisation that based on science and studies determines nutritional needs and dietary recommendations for pets.

  • Wet food: Wet food, which can also be called canned food, is generally perceived as tasty by the dog, and also has a smell which can stimulate the dog's appetite more. The food has undergone a cooking process and therefore differs from raw food as it is bacteria-free. In this video, you can se how wet food and dry food is made.

  • Raw food diets & BARF: Raw food diets usually consists of a mixture of raw meat, inner organs and vegetables, and is usually bought frozen. In order for it to be approved as complete food, it also often contains added minerals and vitamins. There are also some raw foods that contain potatoes, rice and other grains. BARF is a type of raw food and stands for Biologically Appropriate Raw Food. Many dogs may experience that raw food smells and tastes more than dry food and can thus be more attractive. Not all raw food diets is classified as complete food, which you as a dog owner should be aware of.

    It has been noticed on several occasions that raw food diets carries unwanted bacteria that can endanger the dog's and also human health. In 2018, Rån & Rön tested 15 dog food products that contain raw meat, bones or organs. The test could show that in several of the products there were different types of bacteria that can be harmful to humans and indicate unsatisfactory hygiene. For example campylobacter, listeria and antibiotic-resistant ESBL bacteria were found, that can contribute to the spread of antibiotic resistance both through handling of the food and also via the dog's faeces, according to a recent study from SLU. Antibiotic resistance means that bacteria develop resistance to antibiotics. This is a serious global health threat and you can read more about this at the World Health Organization.

    In some situations, it is completely discouraged to feed your dog raw food diets, for example if your dog is on antibiotic treatment, or if it is a pregnant or nursing female. At WSAVA you can read more about the risks associated with raw food diets for the dog.

Classification of complete food according to the dog's condition and needs

  • Standard diet: Standard diets are developed for dogs that are healthy and have no diseases or special needs. There is standard diets adapted for dogs of different ages, breeds and sizes. petgoods food for adults and puppies is a standard diet.

  • Veterinary diet: Veterinary diets is a special food, which is developed and adapted to a dog's specific condition and disease. In order for a food to be defined as veternary diet, approval within the EU is required by law. There are different types of veterinary diets that are developed and adapted to the dog's various conditions, such as kidney disease, pancreatitis, joint disease or other conditions. An experienced veterinarian who knows the dog's medical record can recommend a diet that is suitable for the dog's needs.

  • Allergy food / Hypoallergenic diets: Food allergies are a common problem among our dogs and sometimes this means that the dog needs a special diet. The term hypoallergenic means that the food is considered to cause fewer allergic reactions. Insects, which is the animal protein source in petgood's diet, are a novel protein source to many dogs and can thus be beneficial for dogs with allergies or sensitive stomachs. Since the dog has not been exposed to insect protein before, this reduces the risk of an allergic reaction. However, our food still falls under the previous classification, as a standard diet. Feel free to read more about how allergy diets works in our article on food allergy.

If a veterinarian has recommended a specific diet, it is best to consult the treating veterinarian if you want to test another diet. The veterinarian can then provide guidance on which food is best for that particular patient.

Food that is not classified as complete food

Homemade food: There are risks associated with cooking the food yourself / putting together your own menu of raw food for your dog, as it is difficult to find the right balance of nutrients. There is a risk that the dog develops deficiency diseases, and this is most dangerous for a puppy or young dog. Dogs require about 37 different nutrients daily to feel good, and in a study from 2013 where 200 different dog food recipes were examined, it was found that 95% lacked at least one essential nutrient. The needs also differ depending on the dog's breed, age, activity level and other factors, which is difficult to adapt in a homemade diet. Sources: WSAVA and FEDIAF.

A summary of petgoods food:

  • Complete food: petgood's complete food follows FEDIAF's recommendations and contains the right balance of nutrients your dog needs to be healthy and grow, ie the right proportion of protein, fat, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins.

  • Dry food: petgoods food is a dry food that you can choose to give to your dog just as it is or soak in a little bit of water. The shelf life of an unopened bag is 18 months.

  • Standard diet: petgoods food is a standard diet for dogs that do not suffer from any particular disease or problem. However, it is based on insects which is a new source of protein for dogs, which can be beneficial for dogs suffering from food allergies. petgoods food contains no other animal ingredients than insects.

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