The question I dive into today is should you be feeding your pet and “all life stages;” which can also be labeled “complete and balanced” food, or “maintenance food?” Okay, you might be thinking… I don’t even know which one I am currently feeding my pet! That’s okay I have been where you are before I became pet-nutrition trained and savvy to know what to look for in quality foods. Every pet food manufacture is required to include on their label if the food is either made for all life stages of pets, this includes nursing and pregnant pets, or just for maintenance of an adult pet. (not to confuse, but to be full disclosure, there is a third option, if a food is not balanced for either it is labeled as “for supplemental feeding only.”
The difference between these two options is that a food which is complete and balanced for all life stages is higher in many critical nutrients which are required to sustain pregnant and nursing moms, as well as growing puppies and kittens.
Nutrients such as:
Omega-3 fatty acids
These as you know are all very healthy useful nutrients, so why wouldn’t you want your adult cat or dog to receive these health-boosting nutrients as well? The truth is that these are simply MARKETING PLOYS. When we look at this from a holistic standpoint, our pets ancestors did not eat a different diet when they were under a year, and then a different diet when they were adults (can you see your cat’s great-great grandmother saying “oh no trim off some of the fat off that mouse for me.”) Of course not, the name of the game in the wild life is to take in the highest quality nutrition possible through entire life to sustain good thriving health, and that should be our goal for our pets today as well! These “options” have been created by the pet-food manufactures so they can SAVE THEMSELVES MONEY by putting less of the necessary healthy nutrients into YOUR pet’s food because they are an adult and can “maintain” without them.
The point to consider here is that our pets should not just “maintain” their health, but should be given the best nutrition possible to THRIVE! Just because they can maintain and not develop deficiencies at a particular level of nutrients doesn’t mean that their bodies would not be HEALTHIER if they did revive more of these healthful nutrients… our babies deserve the best nutrition possible to give them their best, healthiest, happiest life possible. Please don’t fall victim to deceitful marketing; choose for for ALL LIFE STAGES canned pet foods for your pet’s entire life! (or better yet, a balanced commercial or home-made cooked or raw 🙂
Sincerely, your PetCoach
April Arguin A.S., C.P.N., P.M.H.