Choosing the right food for your Dog or Cat, and ensuring that it is getting everything it needs to stay fit and healthy can be the hardest thing for its new owner and indeed for present owners. With new pet foods constantly coming onto the market all claiming one thing or another, that can sometimes make it sound better than your current food, can often make you rethink or question your dog or cats needs. Searching through the internet for the right food can be even more confusing.
This is where the knowledge and expertise of your local independent pet shop comes into its own, especially those that actively advertise natural feeding.
The most important thing to keep in the back of your mind when choosing your pets food is, will it meet the nutritional needs of my pet? And will it help my dog if it has any special requirements such as joint aid, intolerances, skin and coat problems etc? If you can satisfy this, then you are on the right road to having a happy and healthy pet for a very long time.
So what are we looking for?
*A natural wholesome diet with minimum ingredients.
*A quality protein source not exceeding 60% total, this should be an animal protein which is highly nutritious and easy to digest.
*A good source of carbohydrates such as sweet potato not exceeding 30%
*Oils such as linseed, sunflower oil or chicken oils this will give your pet the fatty acids that it needs
*Fruits and vegetables which will add natural vitamins and minerals
*Look for consistency in quantities when looking at the composition on the label to ensure the ingredients are the same each time you buy the same food.
*Look for words on the packaging such as hypoallergenic or natural
What to be wary of and to avoid
*Artificial additives and preservatives…. these often come with E numbers and can upset your dogs behaviour
*Meat and animal derivatives… this is telling you that this could be anything belonging to the animal including feathers, beaks, offal, skin and other nasties. It is also telling you the ingredients are inconsistent
*Vegetable derivatives could include potato peelings, roots and off cuts.
*Cereals as a main ingredient is not a natural diet for Carnivores.
*Vague listing of ingredients, this allows the manufacturers to change the ingredient for cheaper ingredients in the next batch they make
*Read the label carefully, it might say Chicken and Rice but manufacturers only need to put a minimum of 4% of each to make that claim.
Finally don’t fall into the trap that many people do, just because it’s expensive doesn’t make it the best food for your pet.
For more information on the nutritional needs of your Pet please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, with over 30 years in the pet industry we have some very wise words.
Rons Pet Supplies – Tavistock