All Life Stage Diets – Premium Holistic Pet Food
on February 3, 2017
Posted in General
There are many questions regarding the labeling of pet foods and one major question from many owners is “How can pet food be appropriate for “all life stage diets”? This labeling is not to say that there is no need for a puppy or senior formulas in our healthy dogs and cats, but that one food can meet the requirements if fed appropriately. As cats and dogs get older there may be medical problems that result in the need to change foods. There is some trepidation about feeding food labeled as “all life stages” to puppies and kittens, in particular, the large and giant breed puppies, which will be discussed further a little later.
The American Association of Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) is the main regulatory body that provides nutritional recommendations for dogs and cats, and most companies look to comply with these recommendations. When looking at AAFCO’s recommendations for growth and reproduction compared to the needs of an adult dog and cats the requirements are most drastically different for protein, calcium and phosphorus and a few of the trace minerals with no real differences in requirements for vitamins across life stages. Surprisingly, to most people, this is what allows us to label for “all life stages”. As you can see from these small tables below the requirements for kittens and cats are met and in fact, we are above the nutrient requirements for important things like protein since we at Pet Wellbeing believe in the principle that cats are carnivores so we rely on meat based proteins to meet these important requirements. We make sure that we have nearly 10 times the thiamine and cobalamin concentrations since we know the importance of these vitamins in high-protein cat diets.
Cat Requirements vs. Pet Wellbeing Food
|NUTRIENT % /kg||Kitten/ Repro.||Cats||Pet Wellbeing Holistic Cat Food|
Across both our cat and dog foods we ensure adequacy in many areas and exceed the minimum requirements by nearly 3 fold for zinc and iron due to their importance in cell regeneration and the immune system. Our vitamin A, vitamin E and vitamin D concentrations are 5-10 fold higher than minimum requirements to ensure adequate vitamin content after production and prolonged storage. As a general mantra at Pet Well Being we believe in high protein diets for dogs as well. But very often with higher protein comes higher bone content in the food as well which leads to increased calcium and phosphorus, which is why our foods contain low ash (bone ) content in our chicken and fish meals. This calcium and phosphorus concentration is an area of concern since large and giant breed puppies have a very small window for calcium sufficiency in the diet and too much may be detrimental. Typically, dry foods for large and giant breed puppies should fall in the 3.0-4.5 grams per 1000 kcals or approximately 0.8-1.8% dry matter for a typical food. Our foods are also formulated with a calcium to phosphorus balance between 1:1 and 1.5:1 which is suggested by AAFCO. The formulation for Pet Well Being falls well within this ratio and is below the 1.8% dry matter content ensuring adequate calcium and phosphorus balance for any puppies, large and small alike. Below is our latest analysis of dog food with batches being tested many times throughout the year to ensure we are within the necessary ranges.
Dog Requirements vs. Pet Wellbeing Food
|NUTRIENT % /kg||Puppy/ Repro.||Dogs||Pet Wellbeing Holistic Dog Food|
At Pet Well Being we strive to provide high-quality diets for pet owners that are interested in feeding a well balanced all natural diet made with wholesome ingredients for their companions during all stages of life.
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Janice Huntingford, DVM, has been in veterinary practice for over 30 years and has founded two veterinary clinics since receiving her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph. She has studied extensively in both conventional and holistic modalities. Ask Dr. Jan