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Are You Being Fooled by “Natural” Pet Food?

Are You Being Fooled by “Natural” Pet Food?

Have you seen your pet food claim to be “natural” on its label?  Well this is a marketing buzzword that may not be what you think it means.   Most of us think of natural as meaning “not caused or made by humankind.” But the organization that defines terms allowed on labels has a different definition.  The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) defines natural to be: (as cited in Dr. Becker’s Article “Can You Decipher This Pet Food Insider Double Talk?”)

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Prescription Pet Food Diets

Prescription Pet Food Diets

Therefore, go by this rule:  If pet food is cheap, there’s a reason and it’s probably not very healthy.  But if pet food is expensive, you don’t know that it’s healthy! 

Could be or NOT! Prescription and gimmicky foods can be very expensive but it doesn’t mean they are healthy. Don’t be pressured by your veterinarian to purchase food from them. Go home, do some research and then decide.  You are your pet’s best advocate, so speak up and ask questions. If you don’t like the answers, don’t just submissively go along with what they say. Inform yourself and don’t be intimidated. A good veterinarian will listen to you, answer your questions and hopefully lead you in a direction you and your vet feels will be best for your pet.

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Unusual Pet Food Ingredients

Unusual Pet Food Ingredients

The first one is crazy!  Hydrolyzed foods. On the surface, it seems fine.  Hydrolyzed means they break down the proteins into smaller easier digestible pieces.  Many hypoallergenic pet foods are made with hydrolyzed soy protein or other hydrolyzed proteins. Most of these hydrolyzed diets use very little meat or organs and the main source of protein is plants.  I guess they need to hydrolyze the soy because it’s not something a dog would normally eat! And, if they just say hydrolyzed meat, who knows where that comes from. Stay away from hydrolyzed poultry by-products aggregate, because that’s just ground up chicken feathers!!  How much protein is your pet getting from chicken feathers, even if they do hydrolyze it?!

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Ingredient Splitting

Ingredient Splitting

As many of you already know, the ingredients are listed by the amount of each ingredient, listing the ingredient with the most amount first down to the smallest amount.  Usually, you want at least the top three ingredients to be meat, unless there aren’t very many ingredients then you might not be able to do that (example: dehydrated duck, fennel oil, oregano oil).  It is important you read the labels, but if you don’t know what they mean, you might not catch the innuendos of pet food labeling.

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Taurine in our pet’s foods

Taurine in our pet’s foods

Hello!  Today I wanted to address the concern of taurine in our pet’s foods.  There have been a couple of articles going around lately that are really alarming pet owners.  After reading the articles, I have learned quite a bit about taurine and some of the misconceptions around some of the claims.

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