Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

Diet and Nutrition

Understanding Nutrition

With nutrition, there is no one-size-fits-all. Many webpages offer biased advice in line with the interests of the company. At A.P.Vet ltd., however, we don’t sell pet food and remain as neutral as possible. 

So, who influences what we feed our pets?

The pet food industry is the main influencer. It operates like many other industries, manufacturing its products at high volume and with low-cost ingredients. This results in products most beneficial for profit. Their brands have become well-known to households and throughout connected businesses. New types of food with less processed ingredients are becoming more popular and available, but with their own set of problems.

Nutritionists often either work for pet food companies or are strong believers in one type of food, with training often facilitated by either traditional or raw food companies. Similarly, vets’ training may be influenced by corporate players in the market economy. 

A.P.Vet’s Iris Ege attended traditional-style nutrition lectures at vet school and, in her case, the small animal nutrition lectures were done by an employee of a pet food company selling prescription diets to veterinary practices. In Iris’ case, a dog she owned had major problems with allergies and didn’t fit into the ‘textbook’ solutions of the time. Now, quite a few years later, some research in this field is done at vet school, but the links tend to be the same. 

Iris believes in looking at each case separately, considering the health of your pet, your available time for food preparation and your budget. Please contact us if you would like to book a dietary advice consultation. 

Pet Food Options

  • Dried food usually comes as kibble, mixer or cold pressed. Depending on the make, it has very different percentages of protein and other nutrients.
  • Wet food commonly packaged in tins, trays or sachets and, again, in a variety of qualities.
  • Homemade food, either cooked or raw.
  • Raw food can be home-prepared or bought ready to serve.

Pet Food Standards & Testing

AAFCOis an international body establishing nutritional standards for complete and balanced pet foods, while FEDIAF represents the European pet food industry. An AAFCO food trial requires eight dogs over a 26-week period, with two being allowed to drop out.

At least 6 remaining dogs must not lose more than 10% of body weight on average or 15% for individual dogs. They must not show signs of nutritional deficiency or toxicity and they need to meet certain criteria on blood tests (not anaemic, albumin normal, liver enzyme normal).

We are uneasy about the fact that digestive or skin problems and weight gain are not looked at. We see a lot of dogs with allergies and choosing the right source of protein and carbohydrate, as well as avoiding additives as much as possible, is important. For facts about additives, some of which you may find unexpected, have a read of Iris’ article in Westies and Besties:

A.P. Vet ltd. recommends seeking good advice, particularly if your dog has clinical problems. Nutritional advice is a key part of our holistic consults for clinical problems. Please note that clinical conditions, for example irritable bowel syndrome/disease, colitis, pancreatitis and allergic skin problems require a referral.

We also offer affordable Nutritional Advice consults to our Holistic Pet Club members, with the aim of promoting healthy digestion and a good body weight which help form the basis for good health.