2017 has made it's arrival and with another year gone, I'm ready to embark on learning as much as humanly possible about the challenges we face to find the best pet foods for our fur babies.
I mean, you walk into the store and there is aisle after aisle, from the floor to the ceiling, bright colored bags of all sizes staring back at you with dogs running through a field, smiling dogs, and the words "all natural" and "complete and balanced" in bold letters, telling you it is the best. But which one is the best?
We are here to help break it all down.
Some brands have been strategically placed at the end of an aisle or eye level to you when you walk in. Do you know that manufacturers pay money to the store for that shelf space? Good marketing for the manufacturer and their profit plan, but is it best for our pets?
It is extremely unlikely.
We are in hopes to help you start shedding through the layers of information and misinformation on what we are feeding our pets.
For years, I have been researching pet foods. I have taken a notebook, my IPad and even my husband along to store after store, reading the ingredients list, the promises stamped on the bags, the placement in the store and done many comparisons.
I have been looked at like I'm crazy by more then one store clerk. It's ok, because I have compiled the information and read up on many brands and choices we have.
So today, as we begin 2017, we want to start with a few things we hope you will keep in mind.
1) Do the best you can. You love your pets and it is perfectly all right to purchase the food that you can afford and that your pet is doing well on.
2) In the United States, sadly, complete nutrition and all natural, can be placed on a bag of food, even when the statement is not telling you the whole truth.
3) Always read the ingredient list, usually placed on the side of the bag. Does it start with meat? Are there vegetables and vitamins near the top of the list? The first six ingredients listed are very important. We will be talking a lot more about ingredients and fillers in the next few days.
4) Not all dogs benefit from grain free foods. Think about wolves and wild dogs. They eat grass and grain. Is the dog food necessary? Maybe for some but a marketing ploy for others? We will look closer at this as well.
5) And do you know, it is often recommended and sometimes best to rotate between different dog foods? We do this here now for our dogs. The reasoning behind it? What one brand may not have for vitamins or nutrition the other may. That way, your pets do not become as easily deficient on what their body needs. Interesting, right? We will also talk more about this coming up so do not make changes yet!
Remember, always consult with your veterinarian before making any changes. With knowledge comes power.
Have a fabulous fur day! We will be talking again very soon, so please share your pet thoughts, questions and comments below.
Hand to paw,