1) Feed a Quality Diet
While this may sound like common sense, pet parents are often at the mercy of the media when trying to ascertain food quality. There are MANY low quality pet foods with high dollar marketing budgets being pushed to an increasingly frustrated public. Since pet food companies are not required to display the same nutritional information we are used to seeing on our own packaged foods, reading labels often leads to further confusion.
When searching for a quality diet, look for a food that is high in protein (over 20%), low in fat (7%or less) and has limited ingredients. Avoid foods that contain corn, wheat, soy, seed hulls or by-products. These are cheap "filler foods" used to boost the profits of the pet food producer, and have no nutritional value whatsoever. Nutritionally dense foods make our pets feel fuller for longer periods of time by satisfying their bodies' needs for fuel, rather than just filling their stomachs. While they are often more expensive, it is not necessary to feed large amounts, and many pet parents find that their pet food dollars stretch further. Sabal Chase Animal Clinic recommends and sells California Natural Diets. This high quality, limited ingredient diet is available in low fat and senior versions, and comes in a variety of flavors. Stop by the clinic for some free samples, and stay tuned for tips on HOW MUCH we should be feeding our paunchy pets!