Making pet parenting easy
Choosing the right food for your pet
This entry was posted on 2021-08-23.
As a pet parent, making sure we cater for all of our fur kid’s needs is not always an easy task. Some of their needs are straightforward – like giving them plenty of playtime! But when it comes to determining the right diet, choosing a dog or cat food has become increasingly more difficult thanks to the many options on the market. At the end of the day, when deciding on your pet’s diet, it comes down to your pet’s needs, budget, beliefs and lifestyle.
We’ve identified the most common topics when it comes to how to choose the right food for your four-legged friends. It’s important to note that if you think your fur kid may have an issue with digestion, sensitive skin, joint health or weight management, we always recommend consulting with your local vet first.
First up, one of the more common issues is sensitive digestion, often not an easy thing to identify and even more tricky when trying to find a food that will work for your fur kid’s sensitive tummy. Sensitive tummies can often cause discomfort but by being knowledgeable about their eating habits and making small changes, you might be able to provide your fur baby with some relief.
When looking at digestive issues, you’ll find that sometimes they can be caused by either a food allergy or food intolerance, which means a simple change in diet could help. There are many pet food brands that have worked tirelessly to specially formulate recipes that will aid a pet’s sensitive digestion. From gluten-free recipes to limited ingredient recipes, there are plenty to choose from.
Here are our top picks for foods specific to aiding your fur kid’s sensitive digestion:
Next on the list is sensitive skin. When it comes to sensitive skin in pets, there are a number of factors that could be playing a part, from contact allergies all the way through to what your fur kid is eating. Often, a vet will recommend a diet rich in essential fatty acids (called EFAs) for pets who have itchy skin caused by food allergies. Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids can assist with lowering inflammation as well as promoting a healthy skin and coat overall.
If you are aware that your fur kid’s sensitive skin is perhaps being caused by the food they are eating, there are a number of food options you could look at. Whether your pet is allergic to certain grains or protein sources, pet brands are hard at work to provide grain-free, natural and limited-ingredient diets to help make your life as a pet parent easier.
Here are some of the more popular brands that specifically aid with sensitive skin or more natural ingredients:
Another common issue is arthritis or joint pain and it tends to be one of the main causes of chronic pain in our pets and can have an adverse effect on their quality of life. The most commonly affected joints are the shoulder, elbow, hip, and knee but it can occur in any joint and usually affects older dogs.
If you are aware that your fur kid has some sort of joint-related pain, it’s important to try and alleviate or aid with their pain management as best as you can. One way to do this is by choosing a food that has ingredients like ‘Glucosamine’ and ‘Chondroitin’ as they have been formulated to help support the healthy joint function of dogs and improve their mobility. These ingredients ease the symptoms of arthritis by reducing joint discomfort, pain and further joint deterioration when taken long-term.
Some of the food brands that you’ll find can help with long-term joint care is:
Just like humans, some pets have a tendency to gain weight if not monitored properly. Not only can excess weight potentially cause a number of health problems but it can also affect your fur kid’s quality of life.
If you find that your fur kid is tilting the scale in the wrong direction, you can look at the option of switching their food to one that is designed to assist with weight management. It’s important to remember that where possible, you give your fur kid an active lifestyle so that can continue to burn calories by moving around and getting enough exercise as needed.
When looking at foods that assist in weight management, you’ll find that they have an increased amount of protein levels and lower levels of fat. This helps reduce the calorie content in food, while the increased protein helps ensure your pet gets the nutrition they need.
Foods that work to assist with weight management include:
Lastly, another factor to consider when choosing the right food is your pets lifestyle and whether or not they are quite active. Active dogs come with their own challenges, particularly when it comes to nutrition due to the fact that they burn energy at a much higher rate. Higher protein and fat content are essential, but it must also come from high-quality sources. Pet parents with very active dogs need to look for food with digestible carbohydrates like whole grains and sweet potatoes, essential vitamins and minerals for nutritional balance.
Here are a selection of foods that have this as a focus: