With today’s social media, we have access to an unlimited amount of knowledge on pet foods… But what is true and what is not!? Here are some common misunderstandings that can be found on the internet today!
- “Meat MEAL is made from claws, hooves and hair, or other inedible things”
When you see beef/chicken meal on your pet’s food label this does NOT mean that it contains hooves or nails. Meal is comprised of organ meat as well as muscle meat. As with any food we buy, it’s important to know where it comes from. Buying food from a reputable source will help ensure that you are getting the best quality food for your pet.
Because meat meal does not contain as much water as whole meat, it is a more concentrated source of protein. This allows it to be added to food in larger quantities, increasing the protein content of the food.
- “Corn is a low-quality filler”
Corn is added to pet food because it is an affordable and nutritious source of carbohydrates. These carbohydrates are broken down by the body and used to produce energy, fatty and amino acids for healthy skin, a healthy coat and a healthy immune system.
- “Holistic food is best”
There are no current regulations of the word “holistic” in the pet food industry, and no legal definition. Therefore, any pet food brand could label their food as Holistic. This is not an adequate or reputable indication of the quality of ingredients used.
- “Homemade is better than kibble”
Often when owners decide to make their pets food at home they aren’t aware of all the different vitamins and minerals that our pets require every day- just like us! Simply feeding your dog chicken and rice is not a sufficient diet. Veterinarian-recommended diets are specifically tailored for different ages, sizes and ailments.
It is possible to have a homemade diet for your pet, however, it is important to do all of your research, speak to your veterinarian, and have regular check-ups to make sure this diet is meeting all of your pets requirements.
- “Animals in the wild eat raw meat, so a raw diet is better”
There is no scientific evidence to support that raw diets are more beneficial for our pets than dried kibble/canned diets. The risks of feeding a raw diet often outweigh the rewards. As you are dealing with raw meat, if you are not properly disinfecting any surfaces that your pets’ food has touched, you are at risk of bacterial contamination. Salmonella is commonly transmitted through raw meat, not only on the surfaces of utensils used, but through your dogs/cats “kisses.” This is especially more worrisome when in a home with young children and immunocompromised individuals.
Vero Thompson, RVT