Puppies grow fast and a balanced diet is vital for their growth, cell maintenance as well as overall health. Without any special needs, instructions from the vet or illness related deficiencies, your puppy should still get all the nutrients that he needs from high quality food. The following are the top 3 puppy nutrients that should be made available to a growing puppy for optimum healthy living.
Proteins Proteins are the basic building blocks for organs, tissues, cells, hormones, antibodies and enzymes and they are essentials for repair, reproduction and maintenance. They can be obtained from a variety of sources including animal based meats such as turkey, lamb, chicken, eggs, fish, beef which contain complete amino acids and cereals, soy and vegetables which are considered as incomplete proteins. However, you should not give your puppy raw eggs as a source of protein as they contain avidin, an anti-vitamin that affects the metabolism of amino acids, energy, glucose and fats.
Fats Fats are the highest source of energy providing your puppy with twice the amount of energy as that provided by carbohydrates and proteins. They are needed for the production of certain hormones, utilization and absorption of some vitamins as well as for a normal cell structure. Fats also provide insulation hence protecting the internal organs. Lack of essential fatty acids leads to reduced growth of the puppy and an increase in various skin problems.
Carbohydrates Carbohydrates are a source of energy, they play an important role in the health of the intestines and they are also essential in reproduction. While there is no minimum requirement for carbohydrates, there is a minimum requirement for glucose which is necessary to supply energy to certain organs such as the brain. Fibers are a type of carbohydrates that change the population of bacteria in the small intestines and helps to curb chronic diarrhea in puppies. For puppies to get the most benefit from fiber, the source of fiber should be moderately fermentable. Example of moderately fermentable fibers are beet pulp which is usually used in dog foods. They are best in promoting the health of the gut without the unwanted side effects of highly fermentable fibers like excess mucus and flatulence. Other example of moderately fermentable fiber include wheat middlings and brans form wheat, rice and corn. Each of the above nutrients play a vital role in a growing puppy and they should be adequately provided in his diet.
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