Thursday 9 Jun 2022
Nutrition – The Importance of a Good Diet
Feeding your pet a good quality food is essential for their health and wellbeing. Bad diet or overfeeding can lead to your pet being overweight. Being overweight can make your pet prone to other problems such as arthritis, heart disease, diabetes and breathing problems. Here are some top tips to make sure your furry friend is getting the balance right!
- Many pets will continue to look for food or treats even when they are full. It is very important to get good habits started from a young age. Avoid feeding your pet from the table from the get-go. Don’t let it become a habit that your pet gets the end of someone’s meal or that the meal is shared with them. If you are finding it hard to resist those eyes looking up at you as you are having your meal make it a rule form the start that no pets are in the kitchen during meal time.
- Dogs should always be fed at least twice a day. Once daily feeding can slow down your pet’s metabolism. Cats tend to be grazers and graze throughout the day. Cats that are not overweight or overeating can have food left with them throughout the day. This is only a problem in a household that has more than 1 pet of if your pet is overweight or overeating. If you have more than 1 cat you could think of getting a feeding device that recognises a microchip or alternate feeding meals.
- The most important thing when choosing what to feed to your pet is that it is good quality. Good quality food will have all the nutrients your pet requires already in it. Some foods may have a higher salt and additives content which makes the food tasty but this is not healthy for your pet.
- Dogs can be fed good quality dry food only with no need for wet food. If you wish to feed your dog a combination of dry and wet food, providing it is good quality, this will not be harmful for your dog. Some cats require a combination diet of both wet and dry food. Providing the food is good quality there is no problem feeding a mixed diet.
- There are a wide variety of commercial pet food diets available. Always get your pet food in your local pet shop or veterinary clinic. There will be someone there who can discuss the different options available with you and recommend the best option for your pet. Choosing a good quality food for your pet is extremely important to keep your four-legged friend healthy.
- Raw diets should not be fed for both health safety and nutritional deficiency reasons. Raw foods are uncooked which means they can be contaminated with bacteria. Common contaminants include Salmonella and E.coli which can be harmful to both your pet and to humans. Many raw food diets are unbalanced and do not have all the nutrients that your pet requires. Raw foods also contain bones and it’s important to remember that bones can cause life threatening problems for your pet.