'You are what you eat' applies just as much to your pet as it does to you.
Dogs and cats evolved to hunt their own dinner and to eat just about every part of their prey. Clearly this is not going to happen with our now domesticated pets but we have to bear in mind that this is how their metabolism evolved and their nutrient requirement are different to our, particularly for cats.
The most commonly fed foods are tins or pouches of 'meat' from supermarkets. They look nice, are well presented, are well marketed and generally taste nice. However you could say the same for a supermac and the quality of both is about the same - fine for a treat but not the best nutritionally. Incredibly food from tins/pouches is about 82% water - 4/5 of every tin you buy is all water! If you can't believe this look at the ingredients on the side.
As well as the poor quality of the ingredients and the dubious nutritional value wet food does nothing for helping maintain your pets teeth in good shape and indeed can result in early onset dental disease. Dental disease (tartar, gingivitis, periodontitis) is present in 80% of dogs and cats over three years of age and as they get older it can cause a considerable amount of problems. Feeding dry food will help reduce the incidence of dental disease as it in some part reduces the degree of plaque and tartar building up on the teeth which in turn will help reduce the incidence of gum disease.
Good quality dry foods are also both more digestible and higher in fibre so will result in less poo to clean up and what comes out is generally well formed and easy to pick up in a bag for disposal. Loverly, eh?
So, for all these reasons we strongly recommend that you feed your pet a good quality dry food. While the supermarket brands are OK in our opinion the best that you can feed your pet are Hill's Science Diet, Royal Canin or Iams/Eukanuba. These are the 'premium brand' pet food and are only available from veterinary clinics and good pet stores. It will cost a bit more to feed your pet these excellent foods but you can't expect that you can feed the best for the same price as the cheaper, lower quality alternatives.
However believe it or not the most expensive food you can give your pet are tins or pouches! You can feed your pet a top quality dry food for less than these. For example you can feed a cat on Hill's Science Diet for about €0.60 a day and an average size dog for less than €1 per day.
All the staff of Blacklion Pet Hospital feed their pets on Hill's Science Diet and would never ever feed them tins or cheaper dry foods available in supermarkets. The reason? We know a good quality dry food will help keep our pets healthier and happier, will help reduce the incidence of dental disease and, frankly, may help them live longer.
It's up to you what you feed your pet but our advice is simple - only feed the best!