The overwhelming majority of people nourish their pet using dry commercial pet food. But did you know that there are many other things you can add to your pet’s food bowl to help increase their overall wellness? While regular cat and dog grooming are known to be great ways to keep your pet happy and healthy, jazzing up what you put in their bowl can also make a significant difference.
Before you make changes to your four-legged family member’s diet, feel free to check in with your veterinarian first. You might also wonder ‘is there pet grooming near me that also knows about pet nutrition’? Chances are your groomers have some great knowledge in this area too, especially when it comes to what may help their skin and coat, so feel free to chat with them at your next appointment.
4 Foods That Can Benefit Your Pet’s Health
While the foods below are great additions, it’s important that you don’t throw off the balance of your pet’s overall diet. Keep these extra additions to 20 percent or less of your cat or dog’s total diet. Also, you certainly wouldn’t add all of these foods to your pet’s bowl at once, try bits at a time and observe how it goes.
Kefir, which looks a lot like yogurt, is a fermented food loaded with probiotics and beneficial yeasts that help ward off bad yeast and bacteria. If your dog is smelly, itchy, losing fur, or has frequent ear infections, they may have an issue with yeast overgrowth and kefir would be a great addition to their diet. When you take your pet for their regular dog or cat grooming, ask your groomer for their assessment on your pet’s skin issues and if kefir might help. Start with just a half teaspoon before increasing the amount slowly.
2. Pumpkin puree.
Pumpkin has been a popular food supplement for years. It’s one of the best tools to help regulate digestion because of its high amount of soluble fiber. Amazingly, it can help bulk stool up or loosen it, depending on what your pet needs. Pumpkin also has a decent number of vitamins and minerals and is high in antioxidants. Adding a little pumpkin puree to their bowl after their latest dog grooming visit would be a great treat!
3. Bone Broth
Adding bone broth can be a great way to add hydration to your dog’s diet. This can be especially important for pets that eat dry, dehydrated, or freeze-dried kibble. Water is critical for good health, and most dogs and cats don’t drink enough. Bone broth also promotes good digestion, detoxes the liver, and is great for joint health.
4. Fresh fruit and vegetables.
Fresh fruits and vegetables have cancer fighting properties. However, in order for your pet to really get the benefits vegetables deliver, you’ll need to pulverize or puree what you give to them. While larger veggie pieces won’t hurt them, they can’t break down the cellulose which basically means they won’t make much use of the beneficial nutrients. Some of the best fruits and veggies to give your cat or dog include:
- Blueberries (just 2-3 in their bowl every now and then).
- Peeled apples.
Taking Care of Your Pet As Best You Can
As mentioned, taking your pet for regular dog or cat grooming, keeping up to date on their vaccinations and vet visits, allowing lots of exercise and feeding them a healthy diet all help you provide a happy and healthy life for your pet. Remember though, when you add extras to your cat or dog’s bowl, you are adding extra calories. Your pet’s weight is the best indicator of how much to feed them, but if you’re adding in additional foods, you’ll likely need to reduce their regular food in order to avoid over feeding them.
Want to make sure you’re doing all you can to keep your pet’s skin and coat healthy? Search pet grooming near me to find out more about our four convenient Smoochie Pooch locations in Northern Indiana. Not only do we provide top quality grooming, but also our highly trained groomers can help you deal with any skin irritations or skin conditions your pet may be struggling with. Contact us today to make an appointment.