There are so many options out there when it comes to feeding your dog, and there’s no right or wrong approach that works for everyone.
Dehydrated dog food has become a popular choice in recent years due to its many benefits and convenience, but how do you know if it’s a good idea for your pooch?
This guide will look at the basics of the dehydration process, the potential benefits it offers, and how you can transition your dog to a dehydrated diet if that’s what you choose to do.
By exploring all of the options available to you and your pet, you’ll have the best nutrition choice for them and something convenient and budget-friendly for you.
What is Dehydrated Dog Food?
The process of dehydrating food is nothing new, but the boom of dehydrated dog food certainly is.
Drying food is the process of removing all of the moisture from fresh food while locking in the nutrients and it’s been done for hundreds of years around the world.
Dehydrated dog food is food that’s been previously dried out as it was fresh, removing just the water. It’s performed with a special dehydrator that does the same thing as the sun but in a much more controlled environment.
As the warm, dry air moves around the dehydrator and through the food it removes all traces of water and effectively kills off living bacteria.
The result of being placed in this machine will be food that’s dry to the touch and smaller in size as it’s shrunk, while still holding many of its nutritional contents.
It’s a safe and easy way to preserve food that won’t damage it, and when used for dog food specifically it comes with many benefits for both the pet and owner.
The Different Types of Freeze-Dried Dog Food
When reading the ingredients and labels of dog food, you’ll probably come across a lot of terms that you don’t understand.
With dehydrated dog food there are three common methods you might see listed with the ingredients in regards to how they were prepared and here’s what each of them means.
Usually refers to the same process as dehydration, done in a large machine that flows heat and air through the food to remove the moisture.
This can affect the taste and structure of food, but is ideal for dog food as our pets don’t usually get bothered by how their food looks.
Usually done with a more expensive machine and can cost a lot more than other methods, but is said to keep more of the nutritional value.
The Benefits of Dehydrated Dog Food
There are many benefits to be found making the switch to dehydrated dog food, but for that reason, they can also be more expensive. If you can afford to spend a little more, these are some of the benefits that you and your dog will be able to enjoy.
Most dehydrated dog foods are made with “human quality” ingredients. This is because these types of food are currently marketed at the higher end of the price scale and so they require a huge focus on taste and quality.
Dehydrated dog food can travel well, it’s lightweight and portable, and is usually cheaper in shipping costs. Making up their meal doesn’t take long at all and can even be done in the outdoors, like at a campsite or caravan park on the road.
Dogs love the taste and flavors of dehydrated dog food because it savors these in the preservation process. They have a high concentration of flavor and are especially good for fussy eaters.
Stocking up on dehydrated dog food is easy because it has a longer shelf life than most. In an unopened package, these foods can last a lot longer than sealed dog kibble so it’s great for those who like to plan ahead.
Tips for Making the Switch to Dried Dog Food
Any time you plan on changing your dog’s food to something new, it should be a careful process. If you’re introducing dried or dehydrated dog food to their diet then consider these things before you jump in.
Keep an eye on their water intake
A dog who eats dehydrated dog food will usually need less water each day, and this is okay. The added water content to their dried food will make up for it so there’s no need to overcompensate.
Let the food fully hydrate
Follow the pet food’s instructions explicitly and make sure the food has fully hydrated before you serve it to your dog.
Check for hot spots
Do a check through their food with your finger for hot spots that could be hiding, posing a serious burning hazard for your pet.
Test the waters with your dog and make sure that they like dehydrated dog food before you commit to buying in bulk. Dogs can be fussy and as a more expensive option, it’s not something you want to risk having left over in the pantry.
A Balanced Diet is a Healthy Diet
Feeding your dog freeze dried food might seem like a convenience, but you still need to keep in mind their nutritional and health needs as well.
The best type of diet for a dog is one that’s balanced, so feeding them a mixture of both dehydrated and fresh foods is going to be ideal.
There are plenty of benefits to be found with dehydrated dog foods but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be the right fit for your pet.
You’ll have to weigh up their specific needs, preferences for taste, and the convenience and budget factor to see what works, but we’re sure that these types of freeze-dried foods are only going to become more popular for pets.