When the words ‘premium’, ‘ultra-premium’, and ‘holistic’ are used to describe pet food, the connotations are usually good ones. Although the AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials) have never set down strict guidelines for what these words can mean with regards to our pet food brands, images of an almost roast dinner-esque meal spring to mind, vegetables included. But what exactly are the benefits of paying that little bit extra?
Some pet food brands can charge a large percentage more for their products if they label is as ‘premium’. Arden Grange sell a 15kg bag of Chicken & Rice dry dog food for £38.99, but a Prestige bag of the same weight and flavour can sell for £50.99. Surely then, there must be considerable argument for that extra £12.
Premium pet foods are usually hypo-allergenic, meaning that the ingredients contained are less likely to cause irritation in your pet. This usually involves avoiding foods such as beef and wheat, which can be a common cause of dietary problems within household animals.
The ingredients used are also more clearly defined; there are no ‘meaty chunks’ or ‘cereals’ in these products. Premium brands tend to advertise their products as specific ingredients; ‘fresh chicken’, ‘salmon’, ‘white fish’, and ‘rice’, to name a few from brand leaders such as Iams. This ensures that your pet is getting the best in quality, and not just some mystery meat or cereal by-product.
Feeding your pet higher-quality food can also help recover that extra £12 all by itself, as you’ll find yourself feeding a lot less often. A considerable amount of premium brands, such as Burns dog food, are of such higher quality ingredients that more energy can be obtained after consumption, simply because the food is more digestible. This way, your pet can run around for longer and won’t need feeding as often.
Branching off from the higher rate of digestibility, there will be less feces to pick up when your animal has finished eating and running around. This is due to more of the food being used up in the conversion to energy, and in respiration, and less being wasted and broken down into feces. Surely a good enough reason on its own!
Thoughts? Do you feed your pet higher quality food? Yes/No? Why?
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