Have you ever felt overwhelmed when shopping for your pet’s food? With ingredients that have words such as “ethoxyquin” and “propylene glycol”, it can be a little intimidating to know what’s best for our furry friends. What makes one brand better than the other? Why is there such a difference in prices? What’s best for my pet’s needs?
If these questions have ever popped into your mind, then you’re in the right place! We’re revealing three common types of ingredients that should be avoided when buying your pet’s food.
Ingredient Number 1: By-Products
Ever noticed a meat by-product on your pet’s food label? If you have, it was most likely at the top of the ingredient list. This is because labels organize their list in order of weight, and by-product is usually the heaviest component. According to petMD, by-products are clean non-rendered “parts” of animals that are unfit for human consumption. This could be anything from organs, to feet, to brains. Many pet food companies do this because it is the cheapest way to keep protein levels high, even if it’s not high quality. While not all by-product is harmful, it is an overall vague ingredient, so we suggest you avoid it altogether to ensure your pet’s health and safety.
Ingredient Number 2: Fillers
What’s wrong with fillers such as wheat, gluten, corn, or soy? They are not ingredients that your pet would naturally eat. For example, cats shouldn’t be eating foods with corn because their natural diet is purely meat-based. When cats consume corn, it is much harder for their digestive systems to break down. Fillers are used to incorporate inexpensive protein and fiber options that can ultimately lead to health problems such as high blood sugar and obesity. Healthier alternative options to these fillers include oats, quinoa, or sweet potatoes.
Ingredient Number 3: Artificial Ingredients
When fed artificial ingredients daily for a lifetime, it can build up and cause serious illnesses in the future. It can be hard to identify these ingredients because so many of them are hidden on pet food labels with tricky language. We’ve compiled a list of a couple of ingredients to look out for:
MSG - Used as a flavor enhancer, and linked to brain damage.
Menadione Sodium Bisulfate – A cheaper, synthetic version of Vitamin K where a high dosage can lead to carcinogenic effects.
Food Dyes – Used to make food look more appealing, but does not provide any health benefits.
Corn Syrup - Used to sweeten your dog’s food, but too much sugar leads to weight gain, diabetes, and hyperactivity.
Sodium - Like in humans, too much salt can lead to high blood pressure among other health conditions.
BHA/BHT - Preservatives known for causing kidney damage and directly linked to cancer.
These are a few common artificial ingredients, but there are countless more! Feel confident in what you’re feeding your pet, and avoid expensive veterinarian bills in the future. If you’re unsure what an ingredient is, don’t ignore it – research it! Want to learn more about artificial ingredients? Here is a good place to start.
The next time you’re shopping for your pet’s food, feel empowered when reading the label! If you find any of these harmful ingredients we just described in your pet’s food, it’s time to make the switch to Healthy Spot. We take pride in carrying products that are ethical, nutritious, humane, and eco-friendly. So take the next step to improving your pet’s health and longevity and visit a Healthy Spot today!