Which ultimately determines the quality of our food is our dog or cat. A healthy animal, with cheerful eyes, skin and hair healthy and shiny is our goal.
If the food produce soft faeces and none of the features mentioned above, the food is not good neither for him nor for you.
There are times in which the reading of the labels gives us a very useful information.
Cats are forced carnivores and dogs eat better as carnivores as their digestive systems are ready for short digest and utilize animal protein. Their teeth are not designed for tearing and grinding plant material. That’s why the main protein sources must be of animal origin: beef, chicken, pork, lamb, meat, chicken meal. The sources of plant proteins have lower protein quality, such as soybean meal or corn gluten.
The more animal protein has a food is better because we make sure digestibility and bioavailability of nutrients is increased.
The cat has a special feature with respect to protein. There is an amino acid that can not synthesize called taurine which is known only in animal proteins. The lack of this amino acid causes blindness and heart problems. If the food does not have enough animal protein must be added synthetic taurine in the making.
Lipids are an important source of energy and easily metabolizable and is also required to maintain a healthy skin and hair. Lipid sources are animal fats from chicken, pig, cow and vegetable oils or marine. The fat of chicken and pork are more digestible because it contains higher amount of unsaturated fatty acids than the fat cows.
Carbohydrates are not essential in the diets of dogs and cats, but they give a nice texture to the food and are also a source of energy. Cereal grains belong to this group: corn, rice, oats, wheat.
Fiber is important for maintaining the integrity of the intestinal tract. The best sources of fiber include beet pulp, tomato pulp and apple pulp. These are the two basic types of fiber for the health of the intestinal tract: soluble and insoluble.
“There are other sources of fiber as wheat bran, soybean hulls, oat husk and peanut shell. These sources (except peanut shells) have microscopic sharp edges that can cause small cuts in the gut. This reduces the effective intestinal for digestion of nutrients. The peanut shell has the potential to be contaminated with aflatoxins and should not be used in food quality “(Willard, 1993).
Vitamins and minerals are absolutely necessary and are in adequate amounts in feed quality. Should not be supplemented with vitamins and minerals to feed as it upset the balance causing nutritional deficits and even toxic excesses.
Remember to read labels to find quality ingredients for our pets grow and live in welfare and health for many years to enjoy his company.