How to Choose Natural Dog Treats
Dog owners are now putting as much care and thought into what they feed their dogs as they do with their own diets. All-natural types of dog snacks in particular have become increasingly popular as companies move towards producing organic dog foods whilst others concentrate more on a raw diet. As dogs are designed by nature to consume meat, these natural treats try to stay as close to a natural balance of muscle meat, meaty bones and organ meat as possible.
Today, there are numerous different types of tasty and healthy natural dog treats on eBay, from rawhide chews to bones,, biscuitsaand dental chews.. These all form part of the dog’s balanced daily diet and help to keep it in peak mental and physical condition. They can also be especially useful when it comes to training programmes as the dog will regard these delicious rewards as worth the effort of overcoming its natural inclinations.
Here are a few things to bear in mind when choosing natural treats on eBay for your dog which will keep it at the peak of its performance and prolong its active life.
Types of Natural Dog Treats
There are numerous different types of dog treats available on eBay, and when choosing what to buy owners are recommended to take into account the size of their pet and the condition of its teeth. Many treats claim that they reduce tartar and plaque and improve the breath of the dog, and although some of the stronger ones can be bought only through a vet there are many that are available direct from eBay.
Type of treat
These are made from the hides of cows and horses and they come in a wide range of shapes and sizes.
Dental chews, biscuits and bones
These edible products are made from approved constituents and help to keep the teeth in good condition as well as contribute towards a balanced diet. They’re small and easily broken up for adding to the dog’s regular food and are useful in training as rewards.
Chew toys are not edible but can reduce plaque and keep the teeth healthy, and they are useful for dogs that chew their way through the edible forms of treats too quickly.
Things to Look For
Quality in dog treats as well as in their regular diets is down to ingredients, as is the case in human food intake. The best ingredients on eBay are as pure, fresh and unprocessed as possible. Whole food ingredients are also far superior to by-products and fractions. In practical terms, this means that ‘wheat’ is a superior ingredient to ‘wheat flour’. The more reconstituted or highly-processed the ingredient is, the higher the chances are that it will include undesired additives and that the more natural nutrients will have been severely reduced or lost altogether.
- Locally sourced ingredients are generally the best, and on the packaging it should have a list of ingredients that are recognisable as food items. Try to avoid phrases such as ‘animal fat’ and ‘meat meal’, which are too general, and go instead for those with ‘chicken’ or ‘beef’ in the list.
- Organic ingredients are always to be preferred because they are more thoroughly scrutinised by the inspectors and also because they are less likely to be contaminated by extraneous materials.
- If there are preservatives in the food then these should be natural ones such as vitamins C and E.
- Any sweeteners should be food-based, natural and only used in small quantities. They are acceptable in small amounts because, after all, these are treats and are not consumed on a regular basis.
Things to Avoid
- When buying dog treats on eBay, try to avoid any artificial preservatives such as potassium sorbate and sodium nitrate.
- Artificial colourings should be avoided as dogs do not care about the colour of their treats, and the colourings tend to contain unhealthy chemicals.
- Some pet treats include chemicals called humectants to keep them soft and chewy and lower the rate of discoloration. Instead of these, opt for treats that include natural elements that achieve the same goal such as molasses and glycerine. Where the latter is listed on the packaging, make sure it is ‘vegetable glycerin’ rather than some petrochemical product.
Improving the Teeth and Gums
The primary purpose of natural dog treats is to give the dog a healthy and exciting way of looking after its gums. Dogs suffer from a range of dental proplems just like people do, from tartar and irritated gums to plaque, and these will cause bad breath at best and considerable pain to the animal at worst, so they need to be prevented or cured.
Dogs that have a regular habit of chewing are far less likely to suffer from any of these problems, especially the build-up of plaque. Some dog treats sold on eBay are coated with substances such as polyphosphate that significantly reduce plaque build-up and protect the teeth from decay.
Similarly, it is quite common for dogs to have relatively bad breath and this is often indicative of the presence of oral bacteria, which can be counteracted by getting the animal to chew more on its toys and treats. If the problem persists, however, it should be taken to a vet because this may suggest underlying health problems.
Several of the treats available from eBay are specially formulated to reduce the presence of bad breath, and hard chew toys are found to be especially effective in this connection.
There cannot be many dog owners who never give their dog a tasty treat as a reward or merely to brighten their day. Everybody loves to see their pet looking happy, healthy and alert, with its tail wagging and face lit up with expectation. There are so many treats on the market, however, that it can be difficult deciding which ones are best and which might end up doing more harm than good. The bottom line is that in the case of natural dog treats it really is all about the ingredients. Get into the habit of reading food labels if you do not do so already.
Many dog treats may look fetching but remember that they are designed primarily to be bought and the health of the dog is often unfortunately a secondary consideration to commercial success.
So when searching for dog treats on eBay, start by simply taking a long, hard look at the list of ingredients on the label. These are usually listed according to their weight, starting with the highest contributing ones and working on down. As with human food, the first few ingredients on the list will be the ones that should be taken special note of, and they will usually decide whether you buy the product or not.
Natural dog snacks can have a great impact on the overall health of a dog, both in terms of its mental alertness and in its physical well-being. A dog needs interest and excitement and mental stimulation as much as its owner does, and also things to look forward to throughout the day. Having a few tasty dog snacks made from natural ingredients around the house will brighten up the dullest day for this intelligent animal and ensure that it continues living at the peak of its performance.
There is a vast range of natural dog treats available on eBay at very competitive prices, good for teeth and bones and available with just a few clicks of the mouse from the comfort of home.