5 Things That You Should Be Able To Recognize On Pet Food Labels

By | August 2, 2016

Every pet owner wants his pet to get the best of the resources for a healthy being. This also includes healthy, reliable diet. But with so many different pet food companies looking to capture business it becomes very difficult to gauge whether the pet products are indeed worth it or not. One of the conundrum that pet owners face is getting reliable information.

Interpreting Pet Food Lables

But pet owners can really know a lot about the product by reading / interpreting the pet food labels and making a sense out of them; so that they can be able to gauge whether the food that you are feeding your furry pal is great or not. One way to do that is by looking closely at some words that would assist you to make the right purchasing decision. Let us look at these things in detail:

How To Read Pet Food Labels?

Natural Pet Food

When you look at this word at the first thought it would seem like a cliche word; but that is not the way it is.  In fact, natural pet food according to Food & Drug Administration (FDA) means a product that does not have any chemical changes in the ingredients. Remember, a diet that does not contain chemically-altered food can be potentially beneficial for pets.

Different Meaning Of The Word Organic

USDA has special seals for food that distinguishes whether it is organic or not. If the pet container has “Organic” mentioned on the food label it means that at least 95% of the ingredients present in the food are organic by nature. By organic, it means an ingredient or food that does not contain any genetically modified organisms or GMOs.  If the food labels contain the words “Made with Organic ingredients” it means that a minimum of 70% of ingredients present in the diet are organic. There are certain companies that define respective ingredients as organic on their label list; but if less than 70% of the ingredients are organic then the food will not have an official USDA seal.

All Life Stages & Adult Maintenance Diets

AAFCO has defined some criteria for healthy and balanced pet foods. That contains two words “All Life Stages” and “Adult Maintenance” which assists pet owners and companies. “All Life Stages” is for puppies or pregnant dogs and consists of higher concentration of  calories, calcium, protein, and other nutrients. “Adult Maintenance” is specifically for fully-grown dogs and is apt for their daily diet.

Proof Of Feeding Trials – Interpreting Dog Food Labels

Along with AAFCO’s label suggestions for diets, there are certain feeding trails that are held with pets. This assists in gauging the safety and quality of pet food product being sold. If the pet food has gone through these trials, it would read: “Animal feeding tests using AAFCO procedures substantiate [Name] provides complete and balanced nutrition for [life stage(s)].”

Supplemental Foods

The supplemental food can have varied definitions depending on the source. But traditionally it means that the food just augments but not replaces the regular pet diet. Hence, never confuse a pet food for supplemental use with the one that needs to be given for daily consumption. Before getting supplemental food, check with your veterinarian whether it would be beneficial for your pet.