June 15, 2015
Pet Food Brands–Which one should I use???

Anymore it is overwhelming to choose a pet food to use for our pets. This has become a multi-billion dollar industry over the last decade and now everyone wants a piece of the ‘money pie’! Unfortunately almost anyone can put out a line of pet foods. What to consider when trying to decide….Minimally they should at least abide by the Association of American Feed Control Officials(AAFCO) regulations. Our goal is not to disparage any particular diet but to give you some basic guidelines to think about when trying to decide. Even as a veterinarian, we can’t even keep up with all the diets coming out. The FIRST thing to consider is the age of your pet and what stage of diet they need i.e. puppy, adult, senior. The SECOND thing is their breed and/or size. For example, large breed dogs need to grow slower to allow their bones and joints to stay up with the rest of their body. The THIRD thing to consider is your pet’s current health issues i.e. urinary stones, heart disease, allergies, etc. You need to choose a diet that is compatible with these problems. The FOURTH thing to consider is their weight….do they need to maintain their current weight or do they need to lose weight?
If you are currently on a diet and your pet is doing well on it and has no health issues then it is probably fine. But if you notice that your pet doesn’t like it or they are having problems with diarrhea or vomiting, or weight gain, allergies, etc., you may need to rethink what you are feeding. I try to make it easy on myself by choosing from one of the 4 companies that have a LONG track record of producing veterinary prescription foods showing that they research and study their diets. These include Royal Canin, Science Diet, Purina, & Iams(Eukanuba). This doesn’t mean that I like ALL the diets that particular company puts out but hope that they at least understand the nutritional needs more fully than other companies that don’t research or study the diets they sell. Sadly, there is much false advertising in the pet food industry! Also please understand that all pet food companies may have problems with quality control and need to recall their products from time to time. Such is the nature of the beast, however, I would consider how the company handles the problem and how often it seems to occur. If you have any questions regarding your pet’s diet, please contact your veterinarian for additional information or guidance. ***** And just in case you are wondering about “raw food diets’—while there are some positive aspects to these diets, most veterinarians rarely recommend them because the risk of contamination with pathogenic bacteria are too high and outweigh the benefits. Click the link below to read information from the FDA regulations regarding pet foods.
Also you can check out the web pages below by cutting and pasting them into your web browser for the above companies for more information.


Royal Canin

Hills(Science Diet)

Iams research-and-development.aspx

Another really good resource for nutrition/diet information is at the link below:

click here for more information