maintaining a healthy canine diet with #NaturalBalance Limited Ingredient Diets® #sponsored

This post is sponsored by Natural Balance and the BlogPaws® Pet Influencer Network™. I am being compensated to help spread the word about Natural Balance available at PetSmart, but Well Minded only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. Natural Balance and PetSmart are not responsible for the content of this article.

As a pet sitting professional, I am often asked about diet recommendations. There are a lot of great pet foods out there, but there are also a whole bunch of seemingly healthy foods that I would steer clear of. Diet is one of the most important factors in a healthy lifestyle. Just like our skin, hair, body makeup and energy levels are affected by the foods we eat, your dog's skin, coat, weight, and energy are affected by the quality of the dog food you provide. I believe in rotational feeding, which means I feed N.A.S.H.A. a variety of high-quality dog foods. Though we throw in a new one now and again, there are a few staples in our lineup, and Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets® is one of our favorites.

Maintaining a Healthy canine diet with Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets–well minded

Maintaining a Healthy canine diet with Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets–well minded

When I was a kid, no one in my class was allergic to peanuts or had a gluten sensitivity. And pretty much every family dog ate some kind of crappy puppy chow and seemed to do just fine. I can't get into all of the ins and outs of how these health issues may have developed in humans and canines, but, over time, it seems we're witnessing more and more diet sensitivities. 

If your dog has food allergies or is sensitive to traditional dog foods, a food with limited ingredients may just be the ticket. The fewer the ingredients, the less chance of a reaction.

why is Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets such a great food for dogs? 

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PetSmart® carries a complete line of Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets (L.I.D.) for both cats and dogs. You can find dry, canned, and treat formulas at your local PetSmart or at Petsmart.com. What is so great about a "limited ingredient" pet food? And why Natural Balance?

• The foods contain a single-source animal protein, which may help pinpoint the source of the sensitivity and help you avoid it in the future.

• Natural Balance offers unique proteins such as rabbit, venison, bison, and wagyu beef. Some of our pets have developed sensitivities to the proteins more commonly used in pet food, so switching things up can help.

Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets offers grain-free options.

Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets offers grain-free options.

• A variety of grain-free options are available. Grains are another common culprit of food sensitivity in our pets.

• Natural Balance limits the carbohydrate sources, thus minimizing the chance for food sensitivity.

No artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. Hallelujah!

• The food contains omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids that, along with a quality protein, support healthy skin and a shiny coat.

• Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets are suitable for all life stages.

• Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets are backed by a "Buy with Confidence" guarantee, which means their food is tested, and you can see the results of your particular bag of food on the Natural Balance web site. How awesome is that?

our experience with Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets

N.A.S.H.A. was quite curious about the Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets Sweet Potato and Fish Formula.

N.A.S.H.A. was quite curious about the Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets Sweet Potato and Fish Formula.

As you know, we rotate N.A.S.H.A. through several natural pet foods. We do this to try to avoid her developing food sensitivities and also to keep her happy and interested at mealtime. Would you want to eat the exact same thing every day for your whole life?

It's great that Natural Balance offers a variety of unique proteins, so if your pet is allergic or sensitive, you can stay within the family, yet still offer variety. 

For the past month, N.A.S.H.A. has been enjoying the Sweet Potato and Fish formula. My family groaned when I brought it home from PetSmart, thinking it would be super stinky (they are anti-fish dog food for that reason). Fish is super healthy for dogs, so I sometimes opt to suffer through the stink. But the Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets fish food...er...dog food...you know what I mean...isn't stinky at all! No, really!

N.A.S.H.A. has been enjoying the Sweet Potato and Fish Formula.

N.A.S.H.A. has been enjoying the Sweet Potato and Fish Formula.

N.A.S.H.A. loves the food and has had no problems adjusting. She punches me in the leg for second helpings, a practice that can be quite irritating, but at least I know she's enjoying the food. Her skin and coat have been really healthy, even though here in the Arizona desert, it's the driest time of the year. I wish my skin and hair were tolerating the season as well! At ten years old, N.A.S.H.A.'s energy level has been great, and she's been able to keep up with all of our holiday antics.

We will definitely keep Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets in our food lineup. As I've mentioned in the past, several of my clients have had great success with it, as well, and it's my go-to recommendation for pets with food allergies or sensitivities.

where to find Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets

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Find the Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets lineup at PetSmart.

Find the Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets lineup at PetSmart.

Is your pet on a Limited Ingredient Diet? We'd love to hear about your experience!

Visit Natural Balance on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram.

RELATED

how a limited ingredient diet can benefit your dog

how to transition your dog to a new food with #PinnacleHealthyPets #sponsored

While some dogs have stomachs of steel, some don't. It can quickly become apparent when we've transitioned our dogs to a new food too quickly. While they pay in discomfort, we pay in messy clean-up duties. And nobody wants that. The two most important things to focus on when transitioning your pooch to a new food are QUANTITY (how quickly you transition) and QUALITY (how healthy the food is). When you transition your dog gradually to a food that has limited, quality ingredients, you set him up for success.

How to Transition Your Dog to a New Food. wellmindedpets.com

How to Transition Your Dog to a New Food. wellmindedpets.com

This post is sponsored by Pinnacle® and the Blogpaws Professional Pet Blogger Network. I am being compensated for helping spread the word about Pinnacle's reformulated Grain Free Dog food, but Well Minded only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. Pinnacle is not responsible for the content of this article.

quantity: how to make the transition

Any time you switch your dog's food, it's important to make the transition slowly for two reasons.

1. Your dog will likely be more accepting of the new food.

2. Your dog's digestive system will have time to ease into the new situation, which is especially important for dogs with sensitive tummies.

I suggest a 1/4 over 4 days formula, which will gradually transition your pet over the course of 12 days. You'll switch 1/4 of your dog's food to the new food for four days, then increase the amount of new food by 1/4 every four days. It looks like this:

How to Transition Your Pet to a New Food Chart. wellmindedpets.com

How to Transition Your Pet to a New Food Chart. wellmindedpets.com

quality: what you transition to matters

I am a firm believer that the quality of food you feed your dog affects their overall health. A poor quality diet (I'm not naming names) means your dog won't shine–literally. If you notice the dull coat and lack of energy on the outside, what do you think is going on on the inside? 

Instead, do your research and read the ingredient list. Make sure the food your select for your dog is of the highest quality. What's not in the food is as important as what is in the food. Pinnacle® Pet Food is a great example of a high quality food that will provide your dog with the energy and nutrients he needs to be active and healthy. We've recently transitioned N.A.S.H.A. to Pinnacle's duck and sweet potato formula. 

We believe in canine rotational feeding, which means N.A.S.H.A. is fed a few different high-quality foods, and we transition her frequently. We feel that this keeps her interested in eating and since each food has something a bit different to offer, we feel that it keeps her healthier. We have a few favorites that we come back to, and grain-free Pinnacle is now in our lineup.

Pinnacle is offered in several different recipes.

Pinnacle is offered in several different recipes.

what's great about pinnacle

Pinnacle is all about holistic pet nutrition, an approach that focuses on the overall health of the pet. They say:

Natural foods, carefully chosen and meticulously cooked, are the basis of the Pinnacle concept. Our precise preparation and packaging of high quality natural sources of protein, carbohydrates and fats makes sure the full value of our fine ingredients remains intact for your pet's benefit. The vitamins, minerals, and probiotics found in Pinnacle foods are in to provide a balanced diet for complete nutrition. We've also taken great care to make sure that Pinnacle is made with limited ingredients, so even pets with sensitive systems may enjoy the fine flavors and health benefits of Pinnacle's superior ingredients...Our goal is to provide you with a clear choice of optimum nutrition so that your dog and cat will benefit from good health.

In order to have a healthier, more active, and happier dog, food choice is key. We tried Pinnacle's duck and sweet potato recipe, which has healthy ingredients focused on nutritional balance. And since the food is made in their California plant, they have complete control over production.

what's inside pinnacle's duck and sweet potato recipe?

• duck–provides an excellent source of protein that your pet needs to be active

• sweet potato–antioxidant-rich to support a healthy immune system

• quinoa seed–contains amino acids to support muscle development, essential for keeping active

• peas, canola oil, flax seed, and kelp meal–antioxidant-rich ingredients to support your dog's immune system and overall health

• fiber–essential for healthy digestion

N.A.S.H.A., eager to give Pinnacle a try.

N.A.S.H.A., eager to give Pinnacle a try.

the results of N.A.S.H.A.'s transition

First and foremost, N.A.S.H.A. loved the duck and sweet potato formula. We transitioned her gradually according to my formula, and, as we always do, we mixed in turmeric and apple cider vinegar. She took right to it and seemed very excited about the new culinary adventure. Most of the food she eats has either chicken, beef, or salmon as the meat-sourced protein, so duck is a fairly unique variety for her. 

N.A.S.H.A. loves to go on family hikes.

N.A.S.H.A. loves to go on family hikes.

N.A.S.H.A. is a ten-year-old mixed terrier. Though she's getting on in years, her little legs keep up with our active family. And thank goodness it's fall so we can be more active outdoors. Those of us from Phoenix go into an indoor hibernation-like state during the sweltering summers, so fall is our time to shine. Whether she joins us for a family hike, splashes around in the pool, or plays catch (yes, she throws back, so it's more than fetch), she keeps busy and has a healthy, active lifestyle. We want to keep it that way, so we do a lot of research on the food we feed her. Her diet has to sustain her activity level and support her health as she's approaching her senior-ish (shhhhhh) years. Pinnacle is great for all life stages and definitely fits in with our standards for superior holistic pet nutrition, so we're happy to add it to our rotation. 

Connect with Pinnacle on Twitter and Facebook.

Do you have an active dog who depends on great nutrition? What qualities do you look for when choosing a healthy pet food?

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