Look to Grand Rapids Vet Clinic for
Pet Foods, Nutritional Supplements,
and Pet Health Products
carry a full line of veterinary prescription foods for your pet’s
specific medical condition and stage of life. We also have nutritional
supplements, vitamins, flea control products and dental health
products. Our products are of the highest quality. Advice regarding
their usage is always available. Consult your veterinarian on what
kind of food to give your pet. Your pet's nutritional needs change
with age, and some medical conditions require special diets.
- Always measure how much food you give based
on your veterinarian's instructions. A "bowl-full" can mean different things to
different family members.
- Establish mealtimes for your pet. If food is available all day, your
pet may eat out of boredom.
- Don't feed your pet table scraps. They are high in fat and calories
and can upset the nutritional balance your pet needs.
- Limit food rewards. As much as they love treats, pets also respond
well to walks, play time, and just spending time with you.
- Chocolate is dangerous for pets! Even
small amounts of theobromine, an ingredient in chocolate, can cause
vomiting and restlessness in pets. Larger doses can be fatal. While
most pet owners expect a dog to develop an upset stomach after eating
a large amount of chocolate, few realize its toxic potential. Click
here to learn more about the negative
effects of feeding chocolate to your pets.
"Treating" Your Pet Right
Pet owners have always liked to show their animal family a little extra
love with the occasional treat, but modern treats have gone way beyond
slipping Rover a little turkey under the kitchen table. These days
pet owners can visit pet bakeries, buy frozen dog desserts at the grocery
store, or make homemade treats from a pet treat cookbook. With all
these options, how do you know the right thing to feed your pet? The
good side of treats
There's nothing wrong with feeding your pet the occasional treat. Small
amounts of tasty food can be great motivators if you're trying to train
your pet, or rewards to positively reinforce good behavior. These kinds
of rewards can increase the bond between pets and owners, and some treats
can even help your pet stay healthy. Best of all, it can be a lot of
fun watching your pet savor a treat she really loves.
Treats can cause
problems if they aren't given carefully.
Count those calories
One of the most dangerous problems overindulgence in treats can cause
is obesity. It's a growing problem for pets - nearly half of all
the pets in the United States are overweight. Obesity can contribute
to a wide range of health problems, from arthritis to diabetes and
heart disease. So be aware that some snacks
are packed with calories, and stick with low-cal treats or avoid treats
altogether if your pet is overweight. (For more information, see Fat
Cats and Pudgy Pooches and Heavy
Isn't Healthy for People or Pets).
Stay away from scraps
Much as your cat or pup loves to lurk under the table during
dinner, hoping for a few spilled crumbs, you should resist
the urge to let her sample your table scraps. Leftover scraps
from human food tend to be high in calories and fat but low
in vitamins and other nutrients, and they can easily upset
your pet's stomach. Not to mention that your pooch could get
used to the tastier food form the human table, and become picky,
refusing his usual diet. Also, a pet that gets all the table
food she wants is a lot like a five-year-old that fills up
on ice cream before dinner. All the empty calories of table
snacks can sate her hunger before she gets to her own, nutritionally
balanced food, and she can miss out on some of the nutrients
she needs to stay healthy. Besides, if you feed your pet from
your plate even a few times, you'll most likely end up with
a pet that begs constantly at the table, even when you have
guests visiting. For the sake of your pet's health and your
own sanity, make it a house policy to never share table scraps.
It might be best to leave your pet in a different room while you
eat, so that no one in the family will be tempted.
Tips for treats:
So how do you choose the right thing when you want to treat your
- First off, buy treats made specifically for your kind of pet.
Most pet stores now offer treats formulated for
all kinds of animals from kittens to cockatiels to ferrets.
If your pet eats at scheduled meal times, don't let her fill
up on treats before meals.
- Try giving your pet treats that benefit her health. Pet stores
now offer dental treats that clean teeth; cat treats that prevent
hairballs; treats with added vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants;
- If you're longing to let your dog sample a little human food
but don't want to expand her waistline, you can try giving her
a few fresh vegetables. Dogs often love veggies like carrots, broccoli,
and green beans, which are low in
calories and high in vitamins and healthy fiber. You'll
have to use some care, however, some produce that people
love can be harmful to dogs. Onions can cause anemia, for
example, and grapes and raisins can be toxic.
- Don't feed your dog any new or unusual veggies without consulting
with your veterinarian.
- Fresh veggies can also make good snacks for pocket
pets like gerbils, hamsters, and guinea pigs.
- In general, don't let treats make up more than 10 percent of
your pet's diet.
As for the gourmet yummies that are now available, use
your best judgment when deciding what to give your pet.
If you have any questions about how many and what kinds of treats are
right for your pet, consult your veterinarian. Below are some related
articles that you may find useful:
Supplements and Nutraceuticals
Fido’s Bottomless Pit
about "Treating" Your
is dangerous for pets