Good health requires proper nutrition. A healthy diet for your dog or cat is one of the requirements for a healthier and longer life for your pet. A good time to discuss your pet’s nutritional needs or ask questions about special veterinary diets is during your Preventive Care visits.
Good nutrition starts with making sure that your dog or cat has access to sufficient water for proper hydration. The water bowl should be available to your pet at all times and should be cleaned frequently, with the water changed regularly.
The nutritional requirements of both dogs and cats are different from those of humans, so you cannot simply feed your pet the same food you prepare for your family. Trends in human nutrition such as grain-free of gluten-free diets don’t necessarily translate to healthy feeding practices for pets. There are a number of pet food products on the market from which to choose but paying attention to the nutrients rather than the ingredients is key.
Ingredients must be safe, and provide nutrition or some other benefit. If the pet has a food allergy then you must check labels to make sure that ingredient is not present. But as long as the ingredient is safe and nutritious, focus on the nutrients, not the ingredients. Ingredients provide nutrients. It is the nutrients that are important. Proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals are all essential when choosing the right nutrition for your pet. This month we will help you navigate what kind of diet your pet needs in different stages of life.