Pet Nutrition: 3 Diet Tweaks to Boost Pet Health
Our pets are part of the family, and like our two-legged family members, we want to make sure our pets are well-fed and healthy.
Just as we humans adjust our diets to be healthier, so can we make X simple tweaks to our pets’ nutrition to help them live healthier, longer.
Your pet eats the same thing day in and day out, so the ingredients in his food should be naturally healthy.
Look for a named protein as the first ingredient, for example beef, chicken, or lamb. Avoid any protein labeled a ‘by-product,’ as this is code for ‘all the bits left after the healthy meats are stripped away.’ However, a chicken or beef ‘meal’ is still a good choice, as this is simply the dehydrated high-protein meat tissue.
With quality protein as top priority, next look for nutrient dense whole foods like fruits, veggies and other produce. Greens are great for all pets, and cranberry is especially good for cats as it helps ward off urinary tract issues. Otherwise, avoid corn, wheat, soy, any artificial colorings, and all artificial preservatives like BHT or ethoxyquin.
Having established a strong nutritional foundation in your pet’s food, consider his specific needs and health issues, and research supplements to support those needs.
Basic supplements that are useful to all pets include fish oil, kelp powder, and digestive enzymes. Fish oil is packed with healthy Omega-3 fats and is excellent for cardiovascular, coat, and brain health. Kelp powder is a superfood full of nature-made micronutrients and trace minerals, including calcium. Digestive enzymes come in many forms including pumpkin mixes, goats milks, or powders and ensure that your pet’s digestive system can fully absorb and make use of all the new healthy additions in his diet.
When evaluating supplements, look into their origin and processing: the less processed and closer they are to their natural form, the more nutrients are preserved and the more use your pet’s body can make of them.
Have Some Fun
A healthy friendship with your pet is critical to their healthy wellbeing overall. Playtime is essential to both health and bonding: it gets them (and you) moving and teaches them to count on you for love and friendship—an often overlooked but essential piece of a pet’s wellbeing.
If you have a dog, take 15 minutes to play a game of fetch or wrestle on the living room floor. If you have a cat, tease him with a feather toy or mouse decoy. Use whatever play tactics you like so long as they are engaging and will identify you as a play partner.
As four-legged family members, pets deserve the same healthy nutrition and love that we show our human family. By upgrading their food ingredients, adding natural supplements, and setting aside time to truly engage with out pets, we can help ensure that they stay in the family for many years to come.