There is not a single kibble on the market today that is"healthy" to feed your dog or cat.
No, I haven't evaluated every single kibble out there. But such a task is completely unnecessary in order to state that none of them offer optimal nutrition. It's the way in which kibble is made that is the big problem. Even if you start with the most nutritious ingredients - the kibble that you end up with is not providing the nourishment needed for your pet to thrive.
The first problem is that kibble cannot be made without including a high amount of starch. It won't form into pellets without starch. Of course "grain free" pet foods have become very popular because pet owners realize that their dogs and cats A do not require carbs and B they are being used as cheap fillers so the pet food companies can make more profits. Dogs and cats gain no benefits by eating carbs, quite the contrary actually.
The cost of raw pet food can vary greatly. If you are buying pre-made small packages from a pet food store it will be a higher cost compared to sourcing food from butchers and buying in bulk. The cost you will pay depends a lot on the effort you put forth to locate affordable sources. In many instances raw food can actually cost less than a "premium" kibble.
But to gauge the true cost of a pet's diet there is more to measure than simply the price of the food. For a true picture the impact on the animal's health needs to be assessed and also how the animal's health affects their human family's: time, emotions, and financial resources.
Today is National Pet Obesity Awareness Day. Unfortunately, pet obesity is a quickly growing epidemic. The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention estimates that over 54% of cats and dogs in the United States are overweight or obese.
According to a large study conducted in 2011 by Banfield Pet Hospital, the rates of obesity have increased over the last five years, 37% in dogs and 90% in cats. These are staggering figures! Yet a whopping 76% of dog owners and 69% of cat owners believe that their pet is at an ideal weight!
Carrying extra weight increases the risk for a whole host of health problems. In 2009, VPI Pet Insurance policyholders filed more than $17 million in claims for conditions and diseases that can be caused by excess weight.
You should be able to feel your pet’s ribs without exerting much pressure. You should see a noticeable “waist” on your pet, between the back of the ribs and the hips, when viewing your pet from above.
If your pet is overweight making an effort to increase their daily exercise while reducing their volume of food will help them to shed some pounds. Maintaining an ideal weight will go a long way to keeping your pet healthy.
Author - Jennifer Lee
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