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Get Picky About Pet Food

09/12/2016 01:36 ● Published by Family Features

When a beloved family pet experiences health problems, it can take a toll on the whole family. In some cases, it can take weeks or even months to identify the problem, and more importantly, where the solution lies. In some cases, the answer is as simple as changing what your pet eats.

If you’ve always thought all pet foods were equal, think again. Veterinarian-developed formulas, such as those offered by Diamond CARE, are created for pets with unique dietary needs but also provide affordable complete nutrition, without sacrificing quality or taste, so you can feed your pets the special diet they need for as long as they need it.

Learn more about these common ailments that may be corrected with a new high-quality feeding regimen, and talk with your veterinarian about a treatment plan to get your pet back to better health.

Sensitive Skin
While a rash or other skin irritation can be an obvious sign that your pet has sensitive skin, other behaviors such as excessive scratching, biting and licking can also signal a problem. Identifying the cause is essential to bringing your pet comfort. Skin irritation among pets is generally caused by something in their environment, such as an allergy, a parasitic infection or in more extreme cases, a neurogenic or infectious condition. Skin problems can also arise from poor nutrition.

If your dog has skin sensitivities that might be related to diet or allergic skin disease, try a diet with hydrolyzed salmon as the single animal protein source. Ingredients such as omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids have also been shown to be beneficial to skin and coat health. Some sensitive skin formulas not only contain hydrolyzed salmon but are grain-free and made with peas to enhance the flavor and provide high-quality carbohydrates.

Weight Management
A few extra pounds on your dog or cat may not seem like a cause for concern, but too much weight can cause a long list of health problems. Just like humans, one of the best ways to counter a weight problem in pets is to adjust what they’re eating. An option such as Diamond CARE Weight Management Formula for Adult Dogs or Adult Cats can help address your pet’s weight issue without leaving it feeling hungry. Powdered cellulose, a source of insoluble fiber, helps your pet feel full, while L-Carnitine aids the body in metabolizing fat. To make sure your pet gets all the nutrients needed, this formula is rounded out with omega fatty acids, guaranteed antioxidants and probiotics developed specially for canine and feline digestive health.

Talking with your veterinarian can help identify other ways to help your pet lose weight and also help you rule out any underlying medical concerns that may be causing weight gain or preventing your pet from being as active as it should be.

Sensitive Stomach
Though it may seem like it at times, not all dogs have cast-iron stomachs. A limited-ingredient formula that combines potatoes and egg protein is a good, easy-to-digest option for sensitive dogs. Other beneficial ingredients may include psyllium seed husk, a source of beneficial fiber, which helps support proper digestion, and probiotic strains that are native to the canine gastrointestinal tract.

Understand the Ingredients
Quality pet food isn’t necessarily the most expensive option. The right choice for your pet is the food that delivers the right combination of ingredients and nutrition for your pet’s special needs. The experts at Diamond CARE suggest looking for these preferred ingredients when you have a pet with unique dietary needs.

  • Limited ingredient products contain a narrow selection of high-quality ingredients and provide an alternative feeding option that still delivers complete nutrition.
  • Easily digestible protein refers to carefully selected, easily digestible, high-quality protein sources, such as egg protein, potato protein, lamb meal, chicken meal or salmon. In foods made for sensitive skin, you may see “hydrolyzed protein,” which refers to a protein source broken down into tiny pieces that is less likely to cause an allergic reaction.
  • Grain-free formulas contain ingredients such as potatoes and peas to provide high-quality carbohydrates as an alternative to grains.
  • Antioxidant formulas contain guaranteed levels of zinc, selenium and vitamin E to help support a healthy immune system.
  • Fatty acid blends combine omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids from sources such as sunflower oil, chicken fat, eggs or flaxseed, which help support a pet’s healthy skin and coat. Omega-3 fatty acids from marine sources are often added to dog food formulas.
  • Probiotic strains are beneficial bacteria that help support digestion and a healthy immune system. Look for probiotics developed specifically for dogs and cats that are processed under strict human-grade standards to ensure purity.
  • Fiber blends in weight management formulas help dogs and cats feel full, while blends of soluble and insoluble fibers in other formulas help support optimal digestion.
  • L-Carnitine is often added to weight management formulas because it helps the body metabolize fat.
  • Glucosamine and chondroitin, which promote joint health, may be added to senior formulas or weight management formulas to help support joints that may be working a little harder due to excess weight.
  • Superfoods aren’t just for humans. Ingredients like kale, chia seed, pumpkin, blueberries and quinoa are particularly high in nutritional value and help provide more complete nutrition for your pet.

Learn more about healthy meal solutions for your pets at DiamondCarePetFood.com/PetHealth.

Photos courtesy of Getty Images

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