Choosing what to feed your pet can be a bewildering experience with ever-increasing numbers of brands, types and systems of food/feeding. The rational, science-led evolution of dedicated pet food began in the mid-20th century as vets and nutritionists recognised the advantages of a properly balanced diet for pets over the feeding of leftovers and table scraps. With the consumer revolution in the following decades this has metamorphosed into a £2.5 billion market in the UK alone with options ranging from traditional meat & mixer or cereal based dry foods to high meat, freeze dried and raw products now available in beautifully branded packaging.
So where does this leave the modern day pet owner, looking to find a healthy diet which they want their furry family member(s) to enjoy while thriving on? Most of us reach out to trusted friends, family and colleagues - especially if we’re starting something new like getting a pet for the first time. The next avenue is of course the internet, albeit we all recognise there can be just as much nonsense as useful information out there. At whole we can call on decades of experience in feeding both healthy and unwell pets, and as pet parents ourselves we’ve created our range in order to provide great options for our customers.
We strongly believe that it is possible to combine the benefits of superior ingredients and carefully balanced nutrients with the convenience of a complete diet - giving pets the goodness and taste they deserve while making prep and storage as simple as possible. Our diets and treats have been developed by expert nutritionists using the amalgamation of scientific knowhow, technology and the passion and care that is shared by all pet lovers.
Our ranges are all free from cereal ingredients - grain free in pet food parlance. Having worked with brands which feature both the traditional format of meat meal and grain as the core ingredients, and those offering grain free with higher levels of meat and freshly prepared meat ingredients, we believe that overall dogs and cats find the latter both more appealing and easier to digest. This is evidenced by both the gusto with which they devour their food, and in the less glamorous end of the process with less poop to pick up and less gas being passed!
There are many claims - not uncontroversial within the nutrition community, relating to allergies and hypersensitivity to grains within both dogs and cats. Much is made of the overlap between the genetics of our modern day pet dogs with wolves, often used to justify feeding a diet made up of almost exclusively meat or raw feeding. In reality this similarity, whilst significant, does not mean we need to feed our canine companions with a lupine diet! Studies have shown that dogs have evolved over 10s of millennia alongside humans1, developing the capacity to metabolise starches2 and adapting their physiology as well as behaviour. In other words - dogs are perfectly capable of utilising carbs for energy! Most pet dogs will benefit from a balanced diet consisting of protein, fats and carbs which can be used for energy - with the correct ratio ensuring that other beneficial aspects of each macronutrient are adequately delivered too.
In terms of allergies, the actual component of a food causing allergy is a protein - but these can be plant proteins as well as animal. Wheat has grown in prevalence in recent years, and while many dogs and cats can tolerate rice and maize increasing numbers of pet parents don’t want to feed these ingredients any more. Avoiding grain may help, but isn’t a guarantee.
So why have we only used grain free recipes across our ranges? The taste signature and texture works really well and appeals to pets, the high digestibility means their poop is firmer and easier to deal with and the overall package feeds pets to both satisfy their hunger and deliver optimum health. We have a range of meat sources to help pick the right one for your pet because most allergies relate to this. As always, your questions are welcome and feel free to contact us for any help/advice.
The genomic signature of dog domestication reveals adaptation to a starch-rich diet; E Axelsson, A Ratnakumar, M-L Arendt, K Maqbool, MT Webster, M Perloski, O Liberg, JM Arnemo, A Hadhammar, K Lindblad-Toh; Nature 2013 Mar 21;495(7441):360-4. doi: 10.1038/nature11837. Epub 2013 Jan 23
Comparison of village dog and wolf genomes highlights the role of the neural crest in dog domestication; AL Pendleton, F Shen, AM Travella, S Emery, KR Veeramah, AR Book & JM Kidd; BMC Biology 16 Art No 64, 2018 Jun 28
Dan, April 2021