When it comes to your furry friend’s health and wellbeing, it’s impossible to overstate the importance of choosing the right pet food. Get it right and your pet will be nourished and set up for long and healthy life. Get it wrong and you’ll be running the chance of risking your pet’s physical and emotional health. But with so many choices and contradictory advice out there, how do you know which pet products are the right choice for your furry pal?
It seems that in every store you enter you see hundreds of products on display labelled “organic”, “grain-free”, “all-natural”, etc. Taking into account the great number of pet breeds, it’s no surprise there are tons of pets supplies to choose from. However, variety doesn’t always mean viability. With that said, here are some tips to help you cross off your list the undesirable products and cut through the marketing hype to make the best choice for your furry pal.
These factors play an important part in choosing the right food for your pet. Puppies and kittens, for example, have different nutritional requirements than older animals – they need plenty of protein and fat to fuel their rapid development. Plus, good food will also include DHA for brain development. Keep in mind that feeding a small, lower activity dog with food that’s designed for a larger and high-energy breed could lead to obesity. Your pet needs to be able to eat its food easily. So, look for pet products with targeted formulations for pets of different breeds and ages, rather than one-size-fits-all solutions.
In the past, indecipherable ingredients and misleading labelling kept pet parents in the dark when it came to what actually goes into their pet’s food. After the tons of horror stories in the press, people have started educating themselves better when it comes to the ingredients in their pet’s food. Legislation regarding pet food requires that all products are produced in hygienic conditions and are safe for pets. It is important that the food your furry pal eats does not affect his physical health, behaviour and trainability.
It’s common misinformation that meat meal is bad – this isn’t always true. Although a lot of pet food companies use the term “no meat meal” as a way to promote a superior product, a good quality meat meal can be a great source of essential amino acids and protein. That is because meat meal often includes nutritious parts of the animal including bones and offal. And contrary to what many say, it isn’t full of nasty bits like hair, feathers, hoofs. Regulations exist to ensure that meat meal is free of all these things.
Since pet owners have become more aware of the non-nutritious fillers in pet foods, a lot of pet food brands have started creating “grain-free” products. However, grains shouldn’t be avoided altogether. In fact, the majority of sensitivities in pets are related to gluten from wheat. Good grains, like rice and oats can actually be very beneficial. This explains why most vets recommend chicken and rice to settle sensitive tummies.