Your pet is a part of your family, so you love them and want to give the best life you can, but one of the most common concerns pet owners have is what the best pet diet is. When it comes to food, your cat or dog needs to have a balanced and nutritional diet in order to stay healthy and happy. Pet nutrition is similar to humans, but they also have their own unique nutritional needs, and your pet shouldn’t eat what you eat. One of the most important things to remember is that both dogs and cats are carnivores, so they are designed to eat meat. So, what exactly is a proper diet for pets? Here are a few tips to help ensure your pet is eating a healthy and nutritious diet.
Pet Diet Basics
Proper pet nutrition is dependent on the food you feed your pet. Basically, pets require four essential things in their diet; fats, including essential fatty acids, energy, proteins, and vitamins and minerals. It is important to make sure that a pet diet includes these essentials, but it is also important to mindful of how much or how little of these essentials they are getting. For instance, although your pet needs fats, they should be consuming the proper types of fats and in a monitored amount. Feeding your pet, a lot of fatty foods can lead to obesity, which is one of the reasons why they shouldn’t eat human food, which often has excess amounts of unhealthy fats.
We carry a variety of nutritional supplements for:
- Joint care
- Skin and coat
- Liver health
- Urinary tract
- Behavior/stress problems
Nutritional supplements can be used alone or in conjunction with medications to treat specific problems or just to keep your pet healthy. We will make recommendations if your pet would benefit from a particular supplement.
Read the Labels
When feeding your pet pre-packaged food, it is critical that you read the labels. Although the ingredients listed on the front of the package may seem appropriate, there are often several ingredients included that are neither nutritious nor healthy for pets. For instance, the front of the package may state that the food offers a proper balance of the essentials, but the food may also include synthetic vitamins and minerals as well as large amounts of corn, wheat, soy, rice, and other poor-quality sources of protein that are used as fillers.
Some pet owners prefer to feed their pets a raw diet, but some pets cannot tolerate it. We do not recommend raw diets. Like humans, pets can contract salmonella.
The veterinarians at Marina Animal Clinic often use therapeutic diets to help manage health issues. We carry the Royal Canin and Purina prescription veterinary diets, but we may recommend other commercial diets depending on your pet’s needs. Recommendations and nutritional counseling are available for specific disease conditions such as obesity, renal disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and urinary tract diseases. We can also help you find the right diet for your healthy pet.
If you have any questions regarding your pets’ diet, please ask one of our veterinarians or staff members, and they will be happy to answer any questions you may have.