|Barked: Mon Sep 23, '13 4:51pm PST |
|I have three medium-large dogs, and I'm sure many of you have more, so you can totally understand how expensive food can get. On top of that, I'm just a teen, so don't have an income to afford much.
The sky is the limit on how good you can feed your dog, and its also the limit on how poorly you can feed your dog. You don't have to spend a fortune to get nutrition into your dog!
Kibble: Luckily I can get more than the dirt-cheap Kibbles n Bits, Dog Chow, and Ol' Roy (my dog was smart enough to just refuse it... Plus they ate almost twice as much of it). I also avoid the "fancy" name brands like Beneful and Pedigree (I especially HATE Beneful.... Look at the ingredients.... Corn and soy are on the top 3). I've found the most affordable kibble relative to its nutrition is Nutra Nuggets. I buy the lamb formula. Lamb is the first ingredient, the dogs love it, and its less than 30$ for a 40lb bag.
Basically the main thing you want is real meat (not by product, and NO NO NO corn!!!) as the first ingredient. I also look for Omega-3's, 6's, and glucosamine to keep their skin/joints healthy.
Vitamin supplements: these things can get spendy! I have found some very affordable ones at Wal Mart though. (I believe the brand is Pro-Vet) Puppy, Adult, and Senior tablets are tasty and only 5-7$ for 90 tabs. They help fill in gaps many foods miss. Joint supplements are always going to be a bit more expensive though, you want a decent amount of chondroitin as well as glucosamine though - they work as a pair. Fish oil is great for heart, joint, skin, and coat health. I just buy the human soft gels, about 20$ for 400 of them. Brewers yeast is also a great coat helper, the price can vary depending on where you get it.
Other supplements? I feed raw bones to the dogs to keep their teeth healthy. I also give them eggs (I always do raw, but if you wanna be safe - go ahead, cook them), and don't throw those shells away! Munch them up, microwave for 15-30sec, and sprinkle over the dog's food, it gives an extra boost of calcium. Coconut oil is another one of my favorites. It helps freshen breath, keep a healthy weight, and is good for skin/coat health. A fairly large container is only 7$ at Wal Mart. The dogs also get lots of seasonal fruits from our garden/trees.
I know I'm not giving my dogs "the best" nutrition, but I've managed to stretch my dollar pretty far while keeping their coats shiny and eyes glossy!
If you guys have any other money-saving nutrition suggestions, please post! I'm always up for something new to throw in their bowl!
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