Ensuring a cat has proper nutrition is essential to safeguard its health, increase vitality, prolong life and reduce vet bills. This starts with knowing what makes good pet food.
More pet owners know that the food they choose to feed their pets is of vital importance and that paying extra for high-quality pet food can make all the difference to a pet’s health. What’s more, feeding animals’ low-quality food could cause disease. Fiona, a librarian, lost her cat Jaggers to kidney disease at the age of only seven. This is the result, the vet said, of eating cheap kibble. This is because the more affordable pet foods contain too little meat and too much sugar and fillers like grains that cats and dogs were never meant to consume. Just as ‘junk’ food in humans has been linked to health problems, pet ‘junk’ foods may lead to similar problems in animals.
However, the pet food industry has been working hard to produce foods that are richer in meat. If owners know what to look for, they can give their pet a diet closer to the one nature intended. When getting a premium cat food online, look at the ingredients list first.
How to Spot Good Pet Food
Check the Meat Content – Meat content of pet foods varies wildly. Those that say ‘meat flavoured’ may not contain any meat and some of the cheaper brands may contain as little as 4% meat meal. Meat meal is processed mammal or fish tissue. Foods which list ‘meat’ rather than meat meal are less processed.
Go Grain-Free – More pet food manufacturers are offering grain-free foods for cats and dogs. As cats are complete carnivores who can only obtain protein from meat, they have no nutritional use of plants or grains, except for grass which can aid their digestion. Grains then are simply used as filler in pet food.
Use Wet Food – Wet food is less processed than dry food and contains more moisture. As cats need lots of water in their diet, moist food is better.
Buy Pet Food with Natural Preservatives
Pet food that lists butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) or ethoxyquin should be avoided as these chemical preservatives can cause cancer. Instead, choose foods that have natural preservatives like vitamin C.
There is a vast difference in the quality of pet foods, and some of the cheaper brands may not contain the healthiest ingredients, but savvy pet owners can still enjoy the convenience of commercial foods when they know what makes a good premium pet food.