PetFitness Blog – Pet Exercise, Workouts & Fitness Tips for Dogs

Your Dog & Nutrition

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Although PetFitness is mainly geared towards exercise, the importance of nutrition cannot be overstated — not all pet foods are created equal.

The two most important components that make up healthy pet food are digestibility and bioavailability. Digestibility refers to the number of nutrients that can be absorbed from the intestines into the bloodstream. Nutrient bioavailability refers to the proportion of absorbed nutrients that are digested and carried throughout the body.

Given that highly digestible food provides a higher proportion of absorbed nutrients than less digestible foods, digestibility is critical when it comes to measuring the nutritional value and quality of food. As a rule of thumb, as the quality of ingredients increases, so does the digestibility and nutrient bioavailability.


Comparative Digestibility – Kibble vs Cooked vs Raw

KIBBLE: whole-grain corn, meat & bone meal. Corn gluten & animal fat.

Protein: 24%

Fat: 13.3%

Carb: 62.7%

GRAIN-INCLUSIVE COOKED: chicken, chicken liver, ground oats, carrots & eggs.

Protein: 31%

Fat: 27.8%

Carb: 41.2%

RAW GRAIN FREE: chicken, sweet potatoes, kale, citrus fiber & water.

Protein: 25%

Fat: 34%

Carb: 41%


Keep in mind, you shouldn’t be giving your dog too many table scraps. Sure, once in a while is okay, but if you do it consistently, your dog will develop unfavorable eating habits. Remember, dogs are not instinctively “picky.” When the right combination of aroma, texture, and macronutrients are present, your dog will be more than satisfied.

Although price doesn’t always determine quality, there is some truth to the notion ‘you get what you pay for’. When it comes to dog food, price is often an indication of quality. However, this doesn’t mean that you should just purchase the most expensive dog food you can find. Other factors need to be considered, too.

Think about the food that you buy for yourself and your family from your local grocery store. Do you only buy the cheapest food and continue eating it for prolonged periods? If you do, you probably don’t feel that great. The same is true for your dog. The cheapest food in the grocery store is virtually guaranteed to be made from ingredients that aren’t good for your health.

Yes, there are always exceptions to this rule. You probably know someone whose dog is on a terrible diet, yet has somehow exceeded 20 years of age. Think of that 80-year-old woman who’s been chain-smoking since she was a baby — there are always exceptions.

Just like us, dogs can’t out-exercise a bad diet. If your dog is on an unhealthy diet consisting of poor-quality food, then your dog is more likely to gain weight, develop a greasy coat, or come down with another health-related issue.

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