What are you Feeding your Pets?

Here are some tips that will help you make better nutritional decisions for your pet.

By Janee Williams

Photo courtesy of Lorelyn Medina/ shutterstock.com.


One of the most important aspects of owning a pet is making sure that you are feeding it the right food. It is so easy for pet owners to feed their animals without researching to see what is best nutrition-wise. Unfortunately, many products are filled with preservatives and other unhealthy things that can and shorten the animal’s life. So how we can we make sure that we are feeding our furry companions the right food? Here are some tips from Dave Shaw at the Pet Nutrition Center, in both Burke and Woodbridge, that will help you make better nutritional decisions for your pet.

Recognize how important pet nutrition to your animal’s health.

Very important. Improper pet nutrition can cause obesity, urinary tract issues, kidney function issues, diabetes and many more health problems.

What are species-appropriate foods?

These are appropriate and natural foods from the animal’s environment. For example, cats need a lot of meat, so strive to provide them with meals that are very high in protein. Dogs are also carnivores, but don’t require meals as high in protein content. Owners should nevertheless be wary of diets too reliant on carbs.

Should we try and cook for our animals?

Not the best thing to do. Cooking the meals for your animals can hurt them if not balanced correctly. Be sure to consult you veterinarian and research the best foods for your animal’s diet.

What should we look for when we buy food for our animals?

Look for foods that don’t have heavy carb contents, hard to digest grains like corn and wheat, use gluten-heavy protein or vegetable protein that is not as digestible or contain artificial preservatives.

How can we start making better nutritional choices for our pets?

Portion control: It is very important that you know how much food to feed your pet. Over feeding can cause obesity and other health problems.

Carb control: Keep in mind how many carbs you’re feeding your animal. Know what the right amount is for their physiology.

If you keep track of these things it will keep your animal healthy, trim and active. Talk to your local pet nutritionist about how to keep up with a healthy diet for your pet. For more information on pet nutrition, visit these sites:

Pet Nutrition Alliance