Pets are part of the family. Long gone are the days when a dog was “just a dog” who was rarely even allowed inside the house. It’s no surprise that pet parents are becoming more concerned with making sure that their “fur babies” are getting the proper nutrition. However, it’s difficult for consumers to know what’s really in their pet’s food. The pet food industry is not regulated very well, labels are misleading or hard to understand, and companies often have slick marketing campaigns that can make even the worst food sound healthy.
What’s a concerned pet parent to do?
1. Learn to read labels! For example, the first ingredient may not be the main ingredient.
2. Don’t be misled by advertising. The pictures and wording on the front of a bag of food tells you absolutely nothing about the ingredients or the quality of the food inside the bag. The terms “natural”, “holistic,” “organic” or “premium” have no legal definitions, so any company can use these terms.
3. Understand how dry food (kibble) is made. Most of the ingredients are heated and processed four times before they hit the bag, which destroys the nutrients. To compensate for this, manufacturers will add synthetic vitamins and minerals back into the food. But the problem with this is that these chemical vitamins are difficult for your pet’s body to absorb.
4. Know who owns the brand of food you feed. Pet food is big business. In fact, 95% of the brands that you see in the pet food aisles are owned by just 6 companies. It’s important to trust the people behind the company.
5. Feed the highest quality food you can afford. Food that is less processed will keep the nutritional value intact and can make a huge difference in the health of your pet. A high-quality diet improves your pet’s energy levels, the quality of their skin and coat, the digestive tract and teeth, and enhances the immune system – likely saving you thousands of dollars on vet visits, tests, and medication over their lifetime!
Many experts consider a raw food diet to be the best option as it most closely resembles the diet they were born to eat and maintains all the naturally occurring amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes that are destroyed by heat and other processing methods. Raw pet food comes in frozen patties or nuggets as well as freeze-dried options that are very easy to use. There are several other options for healthier food that provides the benefits of raw, but isn’t raw. These include: dehydrated, air-dried, and lightly cooked.
A whole food kibble with no added synthetic vitamins and minerals such as that made by Nature’s Logic is also a good choice. If the ingredients are good and the processing is minimal, your pet will get the complete nutrition they need.
Your dog or cat is completely dependent on YOU to ensure that the food they eat isn’t doing more harm than good. Don’t depend on pet food companies or government regulators to have your dog’s or cat’s best interests at heart.
At Nilla’s Tub, your pet’s health is our number one priority. We’ve done the research and carry a variety of only the highest quality, raw, freeze dried, canned, kibble, treats and supplements for your pet’s nutrition. We are here to help you find ways to improve your pet’s diet so your furry friend can enjoy a healthier, happier, longer life.
Below are some blog articles with more information regarding pet food:
7 Biggest Dog Food Myths
Ready for Raw?
7 Ways to Improve your Dog’s Kibble
Feeding Raw on a Kibble Budget
Raw Food That Isn’t Raw
Ingredients That Should Never Be In Pet Food