A lot of pet food manufacturers claim that a raw diet is never good for pet dogs and cats, further saying that nutritional content in a raw diet is hard to assess. However, a recent study in Stockholm, Sweden showed that pets fed with processed pet food appeared healthy at first, but as they grew older they began to suffer degenerative health problems. While pets fed with raw food remained healthy throughout their lives.
Over eight million tons of pet food are manufactured each year, and there are also more than 15,000 pet food brands.
Here are some foods that contain harmful ingredients and thus you should not feed to your pets:
- Those with carcinogens. Do not feed them hot dogs or canned foods. Foods with aflatoxins should be avoided at all costs
- Those with preservatives like too much salt and sugar
- Those with protein extenders
- Those containing heavy metals like mercury and lead
- Even foods with excessive nutrients may be bad for your pet’s health. For example, too much vitamin A may cause allergy, weight loss, poor coat, and lethargy
The now-popular dog biscuits started in 1860 when an Ohio salesman named James Spratt went to England to market his newly-patented lightning rods. When he saw a group of stray dogs eating a plain biscuit called a “hard tack,” it gave him the idea to come up with the first dog biscuit.
His products were successful in England. Spratt sailed back to the United States to introduce them to the wealthy dog owners in 1895. And the rest is history.
The range of dog foods expanded from just biscuits during this time period. A variety of foods were introduced during this era that included canned dog foods, dehydrated meals, and pellets. Canned dog food captured 91% of the still-emerging pet food market.
Pets reject some food because the food doesn’t have sufficient amino acids. How can they tell? It’s in their brains — they have nutrient sensors which send signals whether the food is having enough amino acids or lacking them.
It’s because cats’ taste receptors do not posses the proteins that create sweet receptors to their tongues.
You may have seen an instance when your pet dog raids the food bowl of your cat and gobbles up all the leftovers. One of the reasons is that cat food (especially dried varieties) tend to be more aromatic than dog food. Another reason is that cat food contains more fat and protein, as a general rule.
However, your dog’s nutritional needs are different from your cat’s so it’s important to keep your dog from snacking on your cat’s food, as they’re too high in protein and fat and thus might be dangerous for your pooches.
You have to be careful about the tag “grain-free.” It doesn’t mean that “grain-free” foods are absolutely free from grains, or are hypo-allergenic. Besides, the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) doesn’t have any clear definition on what “grain-free” means. So that term can vary from one pet food manufacturer to another.
Iodine is good for the body, but too much of it in commercial pet foods can cause hyperthyroidism in your pets.