by: Josie Noecker, Pet Food Buyer
When I joined the Co-op over a year ago, I had been making small healthful changes to my diet. After moving to Decorah and adopting my cat, Bella Mae, my concept of healthy food also crept over to what went in my cat’s mouth as well.
The question I ask is: do you know what is in your pet’s food? I started doing a lot of research online and have started reading several books on holistic and natural pet care. If you do not feed raw foods to your animal, but instead do like me and feed dry and moist foods, here are a couple things to look out for. By-products and by-product meal, BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene), and Ethoxyquin; which is a commonly used antioxidant preservative that has been known to be toxic to animals.
A book I’m currently reading, Food Pets Die For: Shocking Facts About Pet Food is proving to be full of information. I was also interested to find out that, with the list of pet foods the author deems acceptable Halo and Solid Gold are both listed and the Co-op carries both.
So, before you go and buy a generic or popular commercial brand of pet food, look at the label. Is it chock full of ingredients you need a scientist to pronounce for you? Will your animal be consuming more than by-products and fillers? Many holistic, organic, and natural pet foods are cost effective and wholesome. Also the better quality of food you feed your pet, the more essential nutrients are digested. This means the food will last longer since your pet will consume what it needs instead of having to continuously supplement themselves with eating more often. Like it is for us, better quality of food means better quality of life.