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Posted on 01-10-2019
With so many choices for pet foods on the market today, it can be overwhelming to walk into a store to try and choose a food for your furry companion. Pet food companies use advertisements to convince consumers to buy their product, and as we all know, advertising is not always truthful. Some commercial diets can actually be harmful to pets. Diet-related health issues may not show up immediately, but they can become very serious over time.
Animals suffer from many of the same afflictions as humans – obesity, diabetes, arthritis, allergies and seizures to name a few. Our own bad habits of consuming unbalanced, supersized, processed foods and foods high in carbohydrates are creating the same problems in our pets. Just like us, their lives can be shortened by the foods they are eating.
Most of the pet foods on the market are marked “AAFCO approved”, however, the requirements to gain this approval are very basic only. AAFCO (The Association of American Feed Control) only tests 8 animals on any given diet over a 6 month span; each pet food can be “AAFCO approved” as long as 6 of the 8 animals in the food trial did not die during the testing period. These industry standards are not a good indicator of an animal’s overall health and well-being in the long term. To us, “AAFCO approved” is simply not enough.
Whole food nutrition is just as important in the animal world as it is for us. The focus should be on feeding a diet rich in high quality meat protein, healthy carbohydrates, and fruits and vegetables. Dogs are omnivores like humans, while cats are carnivores. Cats benefit from a diet that is richer in meat protein than carbohydrates. Your dog’s diet should contain a healthy amount of meat protein, but also the high quality carbohydrates that they need to thrive.
Pets are able to derive nutrients from grains, fruits, and vegetables – these non-meat foods are not simply fillers, but are a valuable source of essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber. A good pet food will contain meat, vegetables and grains, and often time fruits. Diets that are over-processed and cooked at high temperatures are less nutritious. The high temperatures of the cooking process deactivate enzymes that are essential to the digestive process, and denature proteins which are vital to our pets’ health. Gently cooked and canned foods tend to be healthier for our pets than over-processed and overcooked diets that are lacking in nutritional value.
free foods to diets with whole grains instead of beans, peas, lentils and potatoes as carbohydrate sources.
On the label of anything that goes into your pet’s mouth!
When changing foods, be sure to transition SLOWLY onto the new diet over about 10-14 days.
Please understand that the contents of these pages refer to foods suitable for healthy pets without heart, GI, kidney, or thyroid conditions, food allergies, or other abnormal conditions.
If you have any questions or concerns about choosing the most appropriate diet
for your pet, or any of this information, please do not hesitate to call us at (480) 820-2822.
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