The notion of that which defines us being inextricably linked to that which we ingest into our bodies was first penned in 1826 in Physiologie du Gout, ou Meditations de Gastronomie Transcendante – “Dis-moi ce que tu manges, je te dirai ce que tu es.” [Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are]. Today, almost 200 years later, with all of our scientific studies, our quantitative and qualitative data and, of course, our good old fashioned common sense, is there any question that we are what we eat? Of course there isn’t.
As humans, we understand that a diet high in saturated fats will lead to heart disease. We know that if we feed our kids sugars and junk food in the morning, we’ll not only get nasty notes from teachers, but we’ll have a child that’s not so bright. Science has shown us what we should and should not eat. Whether we do it or not is not the issue here. We know that a healthy diet will result in an improved lifestyle, more energy, better sleep, less grumpiness, less ailments and disease, a longer life and so much more.
The facts are, whether you do it or not, you should eat a diet balanced with fresh vegetables, lots of greens, whole grains and baked or broiled meats (with very few of them being red meats). You should avoid fried, fatty foods. You should drink alcohol in moderation. You should eat smaller meals but more frequently. You should drink lots of water. These facts have become common sense to us. But, what about our pets??? What’s really healthy for your pets to eat??? Do you know?
The absolute truth is that there is a lot of controversy surrounding what you should feed your pets. Should you feed grain free, raw, fish only, vegetarian, etc.? The process can be daunting and the answers elusive. Just because something is considered a “high-end” food does not mean that it’s actually good for your pet, and just because your neighbor’s dog does great on a specific food, does not mean that your dog will. To find the balance for your pet, it’s going to take some research, some patience and a little trial and error.
Thankfully, you should not feel overwhelmed. There are a plethora of good resources for you to consider. Those provided here are unbiased and not trying to sell anything other than improved health.
• Your Veterinarian – Your vet should be your first source of information. They know your pet and should be able to make some unbiased recommendations for their nutritional health. If you need a recommendation for a good veterinarian in the Atlanta area, let us know and we will gladly refer you.
• ASPCA (Pet Nutrition Service) – Whether or not you agree with the politics of the ASPCA, the resources in this section of their site are comprehensive and provide everything from what to feed pet mice to the top 10 nutritional tips for horses.
• DogFoodAdvisor – Everything about dog foods – research, dry foods, wet foods, raw foods, calculators, label information, recalls, faq’s and a ton more.
• New York Times – Part of the NY Times WellPets section.
• PetMD – Check out the Health Library for a lot of great resources. And they’ve even got a “Dog Symptom Checker”!
• Veterinarian Nutritional Consultations, Inc. (Pet Diets Website) – A great nutritional library covering illnesses, health, foods and feeding.
• WebMD (Healthy Pets) – Did you even know that WebMD has a whole section on pets?
We can all agree that pet nutrition is important. Beyond that, we often sort of glaze over with that look of terror and confusion when we are asked specifics about what we do or, even worse, why we do what we do for our pets nutrition and wellness. Here’s what I can tell you; with a little time and effort (less than it takes to keep up with who got kicked off of what show this week), you can be confident in your knowledge that you’re providing your pup with the best for them and their needs. And here’s what else I can share; our customers who understand their pet’s nutritional needs have dogs who are happier, healthier, live longer, are MUCH better behaved, cost less money and share a stronger bond with their pet parents.
Want to see how some pet parents have master their dog’s nutritional needs? Check out these pups! Fine Dining