Did you know that dogs and cats are prone to vitamin deficiencies if they don't eat the right kind of food? Like in humans, areas of poor or substandard nutrition can lead to chronic health issues for your beloved animal friends. Consider the following information and tips when choosing the right food for your dog or cat, and as always, reach out to Baxter Boo if you have questions!
Essential Components of Dog and Cat Food
Feeding your pet the right nutrients helps him stay healthy, avoid disease, and enjoy mobility throughout life, but it's easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of choices pet owners have today when it comes to feeding their canines and felines. Every food for your dog or cat should include at least the right balance of proteins, carbs, and fats.
Remember that nutrient requirements may differ between breeds and ages. Cats, unlike dogs, are stricter carnivores and they don't need as many carbs as dogs do. Very young animals and older animals may need special dietary modifications. Bonus ingredients such as Omega-3 fatty acids will help your pet's coat to remain shiny and her skin to stay healthy and flake-free.
The Best Veterinary Diet Foods for Your Pets
You don't need to spend a fortune on pet food to promote the health of your animal companion. Check out the following suggestions from brands you likely recognize and learn more about the benefits of cat and dog food that supports the health of specific organs, food that is easier to digest, and food that you've likely never given your pets before.
Purina Pro Plan
Purina dog and cat foods are a mainstay for many owners and breeders. If you own a pet, there's a solid chance that he or she has eaten a Purina product at some point. Purina has created several veterinary-grade foods for your pet to enjoy.
Check out their canned dog food or canned cat food to start your high-quality pet food journey. They also offer specialized urinary formula dry food for dogs and cats who need help maintaining a healthy urinary tract (many do as they age).
Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet
Blue Buffalo is widely regarded as a high-quality, healthy choice for pets. Consider their Kidney and Mobility Support line or their Gastrointestinal Support food for older cats and dogs who need extra nutrients to keep their vital organs running efficiently. This brand has several options for pets that need to shed a few pounds or maintain a healthier weight as well, such as this canned Weight Management dog food.
If your cat or dog has a food intolerance or allergy, he or she may benefit from a hydrolyzed protein food to cut down on the potential for an allergic reaction. Hydrolyzed foods are easier to digest and not as bothersome to sensitive animals.
Consider the Size and Age of Your Pet
Both kittens and puppies benefit from a food designed to encourage growth in young animals. At some point, you'll want to transition to high-quality adult pet food so that your pet does not become overweight or obese. Chunky bulldogs and roly-poly cats are adorable, but they're actually not that healthy.
Though animals, like humans, come in various shapes and sizes, your vet will be able to help you pinpoint a good adult weight for your pet. Puppies and kittens need to be fed more frequently because they are growing, but it's also important to ensure that you transition little ones to adult food, and follow adult feeding guidelines, when they grow up or they may risk obesity.
While getting enough exercise, limiting food (especially for dogs), and reducing free-feeding can help your pet get out of the "overweight" category, sometimes more is needed to help your pet reach a healthy weight. Check out veterinary-grade weight management foods or ones that are formulated specifically to your pet's breed, age, and dietary needs.
What If I Think My Pet Has a Food Allergy?
Contrary to popular belief, pets can and do have allergies to foods and environmental substances. If you suspect that your pet's rash is caused by his food, or if you notice that he has stomach trouble after eating, get in touch with your vet for an evaluation. There are several foods formulated for pets with allergies.
Are "Grain-Free" Foods Really Healthier for My Pet?
What's the hype surrounding all these diets — for humans and pets alike — that advocate ditching grains as the way to optimal health? For humans, advocates of the Paleo diet, the keto diet, and the Atkins diet all subscribe to the idea that lower-carb eating is better for your body. Some even go as far as to propose that the human body wasn't evolutionarily designed to process grains, and that bread, pizza, pasta, and even oatmeal can be dangerous to your health. At this point, unless your cat or dog has a specific allergy to grains, there isn't a scientifically-based reason for your pet to avoid grains altogether.
We're Here To Help!
When you choose a veterinary diet food for your pet, you are contributing to his or her well-being in one of the simplest ways possible. Browse our catalog and get in touch if you need help locating a product. We look forward to serving you and your pets!