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Pet Food – A Simple Guide

Dog, pet food - Pet Wants Santa Barbara
  • 27 September 2017
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  • Pet Wants

When you decide to buy pet food for your dog or cat, there are many different options to choose from. Not only can the sheer number of options make it difficult to compare them all, but many of the biggest companies in the pet food industry spend a lot of money to convince consumers that they are the best.

Since the combination of all these factors can turn finding the right pet food into an overwhelming experience, we want to help by sharing an easy to follow process for evaluating any type of pet food. The first step is knowing what to focus on when you’re looking at the label on a pet food package. When you check the ingredients, they will be listed from heaviest to lightest. You’ll want to make sure that a protein meal like chicken meal is the very first ingredient on the label.

What to Look For (and Avoid)

Once you’ve confirmed that an animal-based protein meal is the first ingredient on the label, you’ll want to take a look at everything else. Ingredients like blueberries, cranberries, and ground flaxseed are all positive signs. The more easily recognizable ingredients there are on a label, the more confident you can be that the food is going to be great for your pet thanks to being made from real ingredients.

As you scan through the ingredients, there are a few items you’ll want to be sure aren’t present. Those include animal by-products, fillers, corn, wheat, soy, sugar, and dyes which provide minimal nutrition and can contribute to common pet allergies and health issues.

Guaranteed Analysis and Feeding Suggestions

After you look through the ingredients on a pet food label, there are two more areas to look at closely. The guaranteed analysis should include crude protein, fat and fiber, as well as moisture. For both dogs and cats, look for a crude protein minimum of at least 25% and crude fat of 14% or more. Two maximums to keep an eye on are 3.5% for fiber and 10% for moisture. If your pet needs to lose weight, consider increasing fiber and lower fat.

Daily feeding suggestions is the other section you’ll want to look over. Having guidelines that are based on your pet’s weight will help you ensure you’re feeding the optimal amount every day. Feeding guidelines are based on weight, breed, age, and activity level of each animal. If you’re unsure how much to feed your pet, consult your veterinarian or a Pet Wants expert.

Now that you know what to look for on pet labels, we encourage you to look at our ingredients page, which includes all of this information for every blend of Pet Wants food.

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