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Pet Nutrition: Things to keep in mind while satiating our furry friends’ hunger

Every year, from September 1 to September 7, India observes National Nutrition Week with the aim to increase awareness about the importance of appropriate nutrition in our diets. A balanced diet, however, is as vital for pets as it is for humans. This means that it is critical for our furry companion to receive proper nourishment from birth. With so many different pet meals available in the market and a plethora of information online, it can be difficult to determine the best diet for our pets. Let us take a closer look at three nutrients that are essential for our four-legged companions.

  1. Proteins – Dogs must obtain essential amino acids through diet since their bodies cannot generate them at sufficient levels. Protein can also provide energy in the absence of sufficient carbs and fats. Since the body cannot store protein, it requires a steady supply from the diet. Animal sources include lean muscle meats, seafood, and eggs, as well as plant-based sources such as beans and lentils.
  • Fats – Fats provide energy to our pets. They also help to maintain our pets’ skin and keep their hair healthy. They also provide essential omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, aid in the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, protect internal organs, regulate body temperature, and promote a robust nervous system.
  • Water – Life cannot exist without water. Water accounts for more than half of an adult dog’s weight. Water performs numerous important activities such as dissolving and carrying nutrients to cells, regulating body temperature, hydrolyzing protein, fat, and carbs for digestion, supporting the organs and nervous system, and eliminating waste from the body.

While selecting the proper nutrition for our four- legged companions is crucial, we also need to be aware of ingredients that should be avoided. Three types of food that should be avoided when feeding our pets are listed below.

  1. Citrus – Citrus plant stems, leaves, peels, fruit, and seeds contain various concentrations of citric acid, essential oils that can induce discomfort and possibly even central nervous system depression if consumed in large quantities. Small dosages, such as eating the fruit, are unlikely to cause much more than slight stomach distress.
  • Salt and Salty Snack Foods – Large levels of salt can cause increased thirst and urine, as well as sodium ion toxicity in pets. Vomiting, diarrhea, depression, trembling, a raised body temperature, seizures, and even death are symptoms that our pet may have consumed too much salty foods.
  • Chocolate and Caffeine – These items contain methylxanthines, which are present in cacao seeds. Methylxanthines, when consumed by pets, can result in hyperactivity, irregular heart rhythm, tremors, seizures, vomiting, diarrhea, and even death.

One of the most important things to know is that every pet is unique, which means that our pet’s diet needs to be designed to fit their specific nutritional needs. This can be determined according to their age, size, and present health.

By- Mr. Ambarish Sikarwar, Business Head, Zigly

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