Food

Along with regular exercise and veterinary care, providing good quality food is the best way you can contribute to your pet's health.

These are the basic nutrients every pet needs:

  • Water is the most essential nutrient in any diet. Ensure your pet can access fresh, clean water at all times.

  • Carbohydrates supply energy and come from sugars, starch and fibre from plant sources. Carbohydrates help energize the brain and muscles, making your pet bright and active.

  • Fats also supply energy and, in the right amounts, help build strong cells and promote nutrient absorption. However, too much fat can lead to  obesity-related health problems.

  • Proteins are required for a healthy coat, skin and nails. Your pet's body uses the amino acids in proteins to make enzymes and hormones in the blood stream and to maintain a healthy immune system. Proteins can come from plant and meat sources but cats and dogs do best on a high-quality animal protein.

  • Vitamins and minerals help regulate many body systems. For example, your pet needs the minerals calcium and phosphorous for strong bones. Antioxidant vitamins like vitamin E and C help boost your pet's immune system during times of stress.

How can I make sure my pet's diet is healthy?

We strongly recommend that you:

  • Feed premium pet foods. Premium foods offer high-quality ingredients and are made by companies specialising in nutritional research. Feeding generic pet foods may lead to obesity, irregular bowel movements or excess intestinal gas.

  • Make sure the food is fresh. When you purchase pet food, check for freshness and purchase only the amount necessary for your pet. Store pet food in a cool, dry place and keep it tightly closed. Discard uneaten food and always place fresh food in a clean bowl. In general, dry food (or kibble) is preferred for maintaining dental health and minimizing tartar build-up. Soft, canned food tends to be more palatable and can be stored for longer.

  • Feed the right amount. Ask us or check the label for how much to feed according to your pet's ideal weight (not necessarily the same as their current weight). Avoid feeding pets as much as they want or feeding a large amount at one time. Doing so can lead to obesity, gastrointestinal upset or even bloat, a life-threatening condition.

  • Avoid exercising your pet straight after feeding as this also increases the risk of bloat.

  • Maintain a daily routine. A regular schedule will help your pet keep normal bowel movements and avoid indoor accidents. Younger pets need to be fed more frequently as they are usually more energetic and burn more calories.

  • Avoid "people" food. Your pet's digestive system is simpler than yours and can easily be upset by changes. Feeding table scraps will result in an unbalanced diet, can cause stomach upsets or even cause life-threatening inflammation of the pancreas.

Life Cycle Feeding

Your pet's nutritional requirements will change as they age. Puppies need puppy food because it is higher in energy, calcium and protein but feeding it to an adult dog can lead to obesity. Likewise, older pets may need diets restricted in fat and supplemented with fibre for their optimum health. Many premium senior diets also contain additives to assist in the management of arthritis and can make your pet more comfortable.

Please give us a call at Mont Albert Vet on 9890 1728 to discuss your pet’s nutritional needs. We can recommend a diet for your pet that will give them optimum quality and length of life.

Remember, you are what you eat, and so is your pet!