A Guide to Keeping Your Pet Eating Healthy
Pets are loyal buddies. They don’t only provide companionship and friendship, they also provide security and they work as guides for the sick, elderly and the physically-challenged among others. Your pet can only remain healthy and in prime shape when they enjoy a healthy body and a stable mind.
For you to achieve this, there are things that you must do regularly. When your pet is in good shape, the results often reflect in their eating habits and patterns; at the center of your pet eating healthy is providing them with wholesome, nutritious food. Let the following feeding guide provide you with a useful template:
Give your pet high-quality and well-balanced food
A balanced diet should form the core of your pet’s meals. When shopping for your pet’s food, keep an eye out for the first five ingredients listed on the food label. The common ingredients on that list should include meat and vegetables. Other needed condiments will be meat by-products and wholesome grains.
When selecting food for your pet, you should consider these as no-go areas for your pet’s consumption:
Keep away from common filler ingredients in pet food. These substances have been found to hurt pets like dogs. Some of these food supplements include Ethoxyquin, Propylene Glycol, BHT/BHA, Corn Syrup and corn, and various forms of animal by-products.
There are other times your pet may display sensitivity or intolerance to particular foods. Such signs often include diarrhea, vomiting and the appearance of skin conditions. If these conditions arise after eating, you should stop feeding your pet with that food. You should also consult with your veterinarian to determine what foods are permitted and prohibited for your pet.
Give your pet treats from time to time
Snacking in between meals, on occasion, does not pose any danger to the health of humans. This also applies to your pet. However, going overboard with snacking may cause your pet to gain extra weight. In this regard, experts advise giving your pet treats made at home.
Your dog can snack safely on low-calorie treats like baby carrots, canned green beans (low sodium or rinsed to wash off excess salt) as well as small slices of cooked sweet potatoes.
Clean, fresh drinking water is essential
Water plays a crucial role in keeping your pet’s body functioning properly. Also, water facilitates the digestive system, so your pet can attain and maintain a healthy weight. You must ensure that drinking water is clean and fresh, the drinking bowl should be cleaned regularly.
Be wary of foods meant for humans
Humans and animals metabolize food in different ways. Therefore some foods that pose no risk to man, may be potentially harmful/toxic to your pet’s well-being.
In the same vein, there are other meals that humans eat, that are also compatible with your pet’s digestive system. You can keep the following food compatibility list handy (these foods lean towards dogs):
Carrots are a healthy snack for your dog. Not only are carrots low in calories, they are also rich sources of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. You can serve your pets both cooked and raw carrots; however, it is advisable that the carrots are cut into small pieces to avoid choking.
Grapes and Raisins (A big No)
Never yield to the temptation to put a grapefruit in your pet’s mouth. Grapes contain harmful substances that can cause fatalities such as rapid kidney failure and death in dogs.
Peanut Butter (A Yes)
Peanut butter is an excellent treat for your pet, but on one condition: it has to be given in moderate quantities. This is because peanut butter contains high amounts of fat, hence stuffing your pet may result in excessive weight gain. Note also that you should go for the peanut butter variety that has less or no salt.
Salt (In small quantities)
Add little amounts of salt to the diet of your dog. Too much salt can lead to water deprivation or salt poisoning; conditions which precipitate other issues like diarrhea, vomiting, and seizures.
Eggs (A big Yes)
Eggs are excellent sources of almost all vitamins, minerals and proteins. However, it’s best to give your pet boiled eggs as against the raw form.
Chocolate (A big No)
Steer your dog away from chocolates because this food contains theobromine and caffeine, two stimulants that dogs cannot digest efficiently.
Now that you have an idea of the type of meals to give your pet, regularly do the following to keep your pet eating healthy:
Veterinary checkups are essential
The vet should be your ally in ensuring that your pet is fit and healthy. It is important to schedule annual examinations for your pet so that they can receive important examinations and tests.
Vaccines that prevent rabies and other harmful animals’ diseases are available at the Veterinary. As your pet reaches 7 years and above, these visits to the Vet should come up at least twice a year. Regular checkup can ward off many preventable diseases, especially when your pets receive inoculations as pups or kittens.
Groom your pet regularly
For pets like dogs, grooming keeps their hair shiny and healthy. Grooming also offers the perfect opportunity to check your pet’s body for redness, scabs, itchy skin as well as skin infestations like ticks, lice, and mites. You should bring these observations to the attention of your doctor.