Dogs are carnivores that can process plant based foods; also called scavenging or facultative carnivores. This is a subsistence mechanism. To thrive, dogs need meat in higher proportions.
Meat is protein. Proteins are made of chains of amino acids. There are 20 amino acids commonly found in proteins, ten of which are essential in a dog’s diet. Essential because the body cannot produce them independently. Quality protein depends on digestibility and its amino acid profile. For dogs, this means the appropriate food would have a balance of the essential amino acids in levels to support growth and maintenance, readily available through digestion.
Grains are carbohydrates that have some protein value. Grain proteins are not good substitutes for animal protein because the balance of essential amino acids is incomplete. What isn’t protein is broken down to glucose, which goes into the bloodstream. The more a grain is processed (cooked), the faster it enters the bloodstream as glucose. Excess glucose, beyond what the body needs for energy, is stored as fat. At high enough levels, excess carbohydrates create sugar-related inflammatory conditions and disease. Continue reading “What’s wrong with carbohydrates?”
This summer, I participated in a local Pet Day celebration and talked to many people about deciphering food labels, for both cats and dogs.
People are so much more aware of ingredients and food intolerances than 10 years ago, but still struggle with food labeling. Current labeling practices don’t make it easy. The guideline used to be to look for meat as most of the first four ingredients. It’s gotten a little trickier. Continue reading “Decoding Food Labels”
Bonita’s Pet Supplies – 10159 Old Olympic Hwy – Sequim is hosting this free class on Thursday, October 19th at 3:00 PM. I will teach a short course in How to Read Pet Food Labels for nutrition, special needs and comparing foods.
- What do labeling standards really mean?
- What does Guaranteed Analysis tell you?
- How to compare food types; kibble, canned, frozen, dried.
This class will benefit both DOG and CAT guardians, helping you to choose good foods for your animals.
Please call 360 477-4388 to sign-up to reserve your seat.
Please bring a folding chair and a notebook/paper.
Please check back – I am currently working on different blog topics to share information and lessons learned from clients and peers. Some of these include:
Pet food labeling; content and regulations
Is My Brand a Good Food
Please send your suggestion to me by email or filling in the comment/question form on this site.