Over the past few years, pet owners have become increasingly aware of the dietary needs of their furry companions. While dogs are known to be carnivores, cats have an absolute need for meat.
If you are concerned about the quality of your pet's diet or believe that they may not be receiving the necessary nutrients from their regular kibble-based diet, this article will provide valuable insights into the benefits of incorporating real meat into your pet's diet.
What Does “Real Meat” Mean in Pet Food?
In pet food, "real meat" refers to animal-derived proteins that come from actual animal muscle tissue that includes beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, fish, and other meat sources. Real meat is different fr om meat by-products, which are made from other parts of the animal such as organs, bones, and connective tissue.
Real meat is of higher quality and a more natural source of protein for dogs and cats. Remember, "real meat" may not always be used on pet food labels, so it is essential to read ingredient lists carefully to ensure that you are providing your pet with a high-quality diet.
Benefits of Real Meat for Pets
At Paleo Pet, we understand the importance of providing our furry companions with a nutritious and balanced diet that meets their specific nutritional needs. While kibble has been a popular option for pet owners for decades, we believe that real meat is a superior choice for various reasons.
Provides high-quality protein
Real meat is an excellent source of high-quality protein, which is essential for building and maintaining lean muscle mass in pets. Unlike plant-based proteins, animal proteins contain all the essential amino acids that pets need to thrive. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and are critical for many important bodily functions, including growth, repair, and immune system function.
Offers essential amino acids
Real meat contains all the essential amino acids that pets need for optimal health and well-being. Essential amino acids cannot be synthesized by the body and must be obtained from the diet. By providing a rich source of essential amino acids, real meat helps support the growth and maintenance of lean muscle mass, healthy skin and coat, and a strong immune system.
Promotes overall health
Meat is a natural source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B12, iron, and zinc, which are essential for a healthy immune system, energy metabolism, and overall well-being. These nutrients also help support healthy bones, muscle function, and neurological function.
Real meat is highly digestible and can help support healthy digestion in pets. Unlike some plant-based proteins, animal proteins are easily broken down and absorbed by the digestive system, which can improve nutrient absorption and reduce the risk of gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea and constipation.
Helps maintain healthy skin and coat
Meat is a natural source of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which are essential for healthy skin and coat. These fatty acids help reduce inflammation, prevent dryness and itching, and promote a shiny, healthy coat. Omega-3 fatty acids are particularly beneficial for pets with skin allergies or inflammatory conditions.
Supports dental health
Chewing on real meat can help promote dental health in pets. The act of chewing can help reduce plaque buildup, strengthen teeth and gums, and prevent bad breath. It's important to note that while meat can help support dental health, it should not be relied upon as the sole means of dental care. Regular brushing and professional cleanings are also important for maintaining good oral hygiene in pets.
Provides natural flavor and variety
Real meat offers a natural flavor and variety that can help enhance the palatability of pet food. This can encourage pets to eat and enjoy their meals, which is important for maintaining a healthy appetite and ensuring they get the nutrients they need.
Meets carnivorous dietary needs
For carnivorous pets like cats, dogs, and ferrets, real meat provides the essential nutrients that they need to thrive. These species have evolved to rely on animal protein as a primary source of nutrition, and a diet that doesn't meet their carnivorous dietary needs can lead to health problems over time. Real meat provides the high-quality protein and essential amino acids that carnivorous pets need to maintain optimal health and well-being.
What to Look For in a Premium Meat-rich Pet Food
It's clear that real meat provides numerous benefits to our pets. It's a high-quality source of nutrition that contains all the essential nutrients that our pets need to thrive. However, when it comes to choosing meat-rich pet food, it's important to know what to look for. To ensure that your pet is getting the best possible nutrition from their food, look the following:
High-Quality Protein Sources: Look for pet food containing real, whole meats like chicken, beef, lamb, or fish as the first ingredient to ensure a high-quality protein source.
Essential Amino Acids: Ensure the pet food provides all essential amino acids required for your dog's optimal health, such as taurine, lysine, and methionine.
No Fillers or By-Products: Choose pet food that avoids fillers like corn, wheat, and soy, as well as meat by-products, which can be of lower nutritional value.
Balanced Nutrition: Opt for a meat-rich pet food that offers a complete and balanced diet, containing the right mix of vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids for your dog's needs.
Grain-Free or Whole Grain Options: Depending on your dog's dietary preferences and sensitivities, select either a grain-free recipe or one containing whole grains for additional nutrients.
Natural Preservatives: Look for pet food that uses natural preservatives like tocopherols (vitamin E) or ascorbic acid (vitamin C) instead of artificial additives.
Transparency in Labeling: Choose brands that clearly list all ingredients and their sources, allowing you to make an informed decision about your dog's diet.
Positive Consumer Reviews: Research what other pet owners have to say about the brand and specific meat-rich pet food products to gain insight into their quality and effectiveness.
Meets regulatory standards. When selecting dry meat-based pet food in the Philippines, it's essential to ensure that it meets the regulatory standards. If you're considering a real meat or raw food diet, it's important to check if the meat is certified to guarantee that the food has passed rigorous health checks and is safe for your pet to eat. By prioritizing these standards, you can be sure that your pet is receiving high-quality nutrition and care.
Real meat is more than just a tasty treat for pets–it's an essential part of their diet that offers optimal nutrition. If you're interested in transitioning your pet to a meat-based diet, be sure to check out our blog for informative posts and helpful tips.
You can also visit the Paleo Pet store for a wide selection of high-quality meat-rich pet food that your furry friend will love. With the right nutrition, your pet can live a happy and healthy life.
- The Paleo Pet Team