Choosing Pet Food | Royal Canin Club Malaysia

Choosing Pet Food

To live a long and healthy life, cats and dogs need the right nutrition. But as a pet owner, it can be hard to know whether the food you are giving them is meeting all of their needs. So, if you are worried that your cat or dog is deficient in essential nutrients, here are a few things to bear in mind.    

What is considered as a ‘nutritious’ pet food?  
When you are assessing healthy dog food or cat food, you must consider more than just the ingredients it contains. A complete and balanced diet can be achieved in a number of different ways, using ingredients from a wide range of sources – animal proteins, plant proteins, cereals to name just a few.  

All of these ingredients can offer essential vitamins, proteins, minerals and fats for dogs and cats. What's important is not so much on the ingredients that go in, but the nutrients that your cat or dog gets out of these ingredients. Essentially, a good nutritional profile is one that delivers what your pet needs.    

Is my dog or cat food digestible?  
Digestibility refers to the ability of the food to be digested and absorbed by a pet. For example, an ingredient may be rich in nutrients but hard for a cat or dog to digest.   

The way ingredients are ground and cooked can also have a major impact on digestibility. For example, corn in its raw form has a fibrous outer shell, but when ground and cooked correctly, it will be much easier for cats and dogs to digest the beneficial nutrients, such as carbohydrates, amino acids etc.  One way to tell whether the digestibility of your pet’s diet is by keeping an eye on their stools – generally dogs and cats should excrete formed, but not overly hardened stools once or twice a day. If your pet is producing stools less/more frequently than this or with a different consistency, digestibility may be an issue. As always, you should consult your veterinarian if you have any concerns about your pet’s gut health.    

Risks of nutritional deficiencies in cats and dogs  
Every nutrient, including vitamins and minerals, plays a role in the bodily function of your cat or dog. That is why nutritional deficiencies can have devastating consequences. For example, a lack of vitamin A in the diet can lead to eye problems, skin conditions and even pulmonary complications.     

Put the individual needs of your pet first  An optimal diet profile should be chosen based on the needs of the pet: breed, life stage, lifestyle, individual preferences and health status. From here, high-quality, highly digestible ingredients are sourced and can be combined to match the desired nutritional profile. This is what we call a ""nutrient-based approach"".  At Royal Canin we have always advocated a nutrient-based approach. This is how we develop precise nutrition for cats and dogs of all individual nutritional requirements. For more information, please explore our pet nutrition range or talk to your veterinarian.