What are the in­gre­di­ents that pet par­ents should look for in pet food?

Animal Scene - - THE 411 -

When it comes to de­vel­op­ing a recipe for pet food, in­gre­di­ents are se­lected based on their nu­tri­tional con­tent and their func­tional prop­er­ties. Ev­ery in­gre­di­ent serves a func­tion and these in­gre­di­ents, as well as their for­mu­la­tion, will vary be­tween cats and dogs. Gen­er­ally, dogs and cats should be sup­plied with proper amounts of pro­tein, fatty acids, min­er­als, and vi­ta­mins which are found in meat, poul­try, seafood, and agri­cul­tural prod­ucts or plant-based sources. Cats are con­sid­ered car­ni­vores so they should be fed with lots of meat prod­ucts to sus­tain their need for pro­tein, tau­rine, and fatty acid that keep them strong and healthy. They are to­tally de­pen­dent on their food con­sump­tion to main­tain the right bal­ance of nu­tri­ents as com­pared to dogs, be­cause cats lack the abil­ity to me­tab­o­lize en­zymes and syn­the­size cer­tain amino acids and vi­ta­mins—they need to de­rive these from meat sources.

Dogs can pro­duce cer­tain nu­tri­ents through en­zymes. That is why both species have their spe­cific nu­tri­tional needs. Dogs are pri­mar­ily meat-eaters but can sur­vive on plants alone, which makes them om­ni­vores. Plant-based prod­ucts such as grain can be good sources of nu­tri­tion for dogs. Pet own­ers should look out for un­der­nour­ish­ment in case their dog lacks meat in­take.

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