We are what we eat, and the same goes for our pets

By: Anne Shilston

Nutrition plays a vital role in the overall wellbeing, health and longevity of our pets. Pets need to be fed a diet that is “complete and balanced” - that means it must contain the correct ingredients and the right balance of nutrients for a particular stage of life.

Therefore a growing puppy or kitten has different nutritional needs to an adult.

When choosing pet food, look for the Association of American Feed Control Officials statement. This is a worldwide standard, is located near the list of ingredients and states if the food is complete and balanced.

Whereas factual information must be provided on the ingredient list, often the packaging is a promotional tool to attract pet owners. 

A lot of the terms used to describe diets are unregulated, such as “holistic”, “grain free” or “human grade”, and can leave pet owners feeling confused.

At Tauranga Vets, we recommend and stock premium pet foods. They contain consistent, high-quality ingredients that are more digestible. This means more nutritional value per serving, less waste out the other end, better value for money and healthier pets.

These diets are backed by extensive feeding trials and evidence-based research. The health status of the pet is also important, as many health problems can be helped significantly by a special prescription diet.  

Homemade diets are an option, but to be complete and balanced they need to be formulated by a professional.

With the smorgasbord of food ideas in the market place, talk to your vet team about what diet is best for your pet.

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