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MINIMALLY PROCESSED DIET

 Dog Food Manufacturers

Did you know that heating of food to high temperatures causes protein molecules to bind to carbohydrates in indigestible complexes called Maillard Complexes? Let’s dissect this information. Digestibility in dog food refers to the proportion in which nutrients are broken down, absorbed and actually used by the dog. For example, foods that make use of plant sources as their primary ingredients, have lower digestibility due to the fact that plant fibres and high carbohydrate content lower digestion. In addition to the actual ingredients going into your pet’s food, its treatment also impacts the way their body can process nutrients. Overcooking various ingredients to form pet food, can cause the amino acids in them to form indigestible ‘complexes’ that lead to carbohydrates forming Maillard Complexes. These complexes cannot be absorbed correctly by your pet’s digestive system, leading to them requiring a larger quantity of food to make up for the inaccessible nutrients. This means that choosing a minimally processed product can mean your dog gets up to 15% more nutrients from the same amount of food!

A recent study shows that the treatment of dog food can majorly impact even your pet’s skin! A dog’s diet can directly influence the fat composition of their skin which can lead to a change in its bacterial population. Since the skin is the outermost barrier of protection against the environment, it is of utmost importance to ensure that it transforms for the better, through both internal and external means. With respect to internal means, nutrition is widely known to regulate the intestinal bacteria community, owing to the fact that the gastrointestinal tract (and its microbiome) receives exclusive access to the nutrients in food before the other organs. This, combined with research that suggests a direct link between the gut and the skin, indicates that increasing the gut microbiome can influence the skin for the better. 

A higher percentage of fresh meat which increases the protein and fat content in the pet food and its treatment which involves lower temperatures and pressures, is what sets fresh pet food apart from dry foods. This difference is what owes to varied nutrient profiles of the two diets and their digestibility. 

The study pursued the cases of 8 healthy pet dogs who were fed a fresh diet for 30 days, after which they were switched to a dry food diet for the next 30 days following a 4 day transition period. Samples of the dogs’ skin bacteria population were gathered after each period and compared. Results concluded that upon the switch from fresh diet to dry food diet, there was a relative decrease in microbiome diversity on the skin. This shows us that a fresh diet is more beneficial for your pooch as it will increase the amount of a healthy microbe not only in their gut, but also on their skin which will protect them from the inside out. 

Right4Paws adheres to the treatment of the fresh diet as mentioned above, since our food contains a sizeable proportion of fresh meats and other ingredients, which collectively go through a minimal processing format. This allows your pet to benefit from the copious amounts of nutrients without losing them in the digestive process. What’s more? You only require a small quantity of our diet to satisfy their daily nutritional requirements, leaving your furry friend nutritious, full and satisfied! So if you didn’t have enough reasons to order your pack yet, you have one now!

Access the study at: https://www.mdpi.com/2076-2615/12/15/1881/pdf?version=1658506247

 

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BALANCED DIET

 Balanced Diet Dog Foods

A balanced diet is the key to your pooch’s long and healthy life. Each of the 5 main nutrients: protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals contribute extensively to the formation of a diet that is well balanced and will ensure that your pet is nourished from the inside out.

Much like human beings, dogs also require a specific composition of nutrients delivered through their daily meals in order to live a full and healthy life. This balanced diet is key to their cell maintenance, growth and proper bodily function. Following the guidelines set by the FEDIAF (The European Pet Food Industry), Right4Paws has a specially formulated diet which prides itself on providing balance and nutrition which is species and biologically appropriate, better for health and holds low obesity risk. According to the FEDIAF, a diet that is poorly balanced has the ability to cause serious harm to your dog’s health and can lead to a shorter life span. The nutritional requirements thus need to be prioritized and complete which means that your pet food must be able to provide all the necessary nutrients with each portion of food that is consumed by them in accordance with their life stage and activity levels.

The FEDIAF states that nutrition is one of the foremost factors that contribute to a pet’s long and healthy life. Aside from water, they recognize 5 key nutrients namely, Protein, Carbohydrates, Fats, Vitamins and Minerals. Let’s discuss each aspect individually.

Proteins

Proteins are considered to be the core elements in the development and sustenance of various organs, bones, muscles, blood, immune system, nails, and coat. Dogs can even use protein to produce energy! People often say that they think that their dog needs ‘more’ or ‘less’ protein but it’s crucial for your pet to ingest the right amount of protein so that it can be easily digested and absorbed. Proteins consumed in excess quantities are ineffectual for the pet as they are neither stored in the body nor are they used to make more muscle tissue.

Proteins in pet food can come from various ingredients such as poultry, beef, pork, fish, eggs, corn, rice, peas or soybeans. However, it’s important for us to look deeper into our dogs’ food before deciding which sources to use as not all protein is made equal! The ‘usefulness’ of protein is defined by discussing ‘protein quality’ and varies depending on the origin of the protein, what it’s made up of, and how it is processed. The ‘quality’ of protein refers to how easily that protein is actually used by your dog. There are a few factors that determine whether we can consider a protein as high ‘Quality’ or not:

The right proportions of Amino Acids:

Proteins are made up of building blocks called ‘amino acids’. There are hundreds of different amino acids but only 10 of them are essential to be present in your dog’s diet. These all have different roles in your dogs’ body, so it’s important they get exactly the right balance of each one. If a dog gets too many of one amino acid, and not enough of another –  they cannot function or grow properly. Think of growing a dog as being like building a bridge. It wouldn’t matter if you had all the bricks in the world if you didn’t have enough cement – you still couldn’t build the bridge. You need just the right amounts of each.

Meat and eggs are considered ‘high quality’ proteins because they have just the right amounts of each amino acid in just the right proportions making them easy for your dog to use. This indicates that meat and products like eggs or cheese are preferable when it comes to providing protein for a dog. Proteins can be taken from plants too – but in many vegetables and pulses the mix of amino acids that are supplied is just not quite right for a dog. It doesn’t mean you can’t use some vegetable protein for your dog, but it’s harder to get the balance right.

Digestibility of Protein Sources

Digestibility describes how much of the nutrients in food are broken down and used by the dog. It is no good putting lots of food in the front end if it’s indigestible. For example, grass contains protein – but this is no good to dogs as dogs cannot digest grass to get to this protein. In addition to having a less than ideal amino acid profile, plants often also have lower digestibility. This is because the plant fiber (from the cell walls of plant cells) and carbohydrate content lower digestion. This is another reason why it’s important to meet your dog’s amino acid/protein needs using proteins like meat, eggs and fish 

whenever possible.

Digestibility is also affected by processing. Overcooking can cause amino acids to form indigestible ‘complexes’ with carbohydrates forming Maillard Complexes. These complexes cannot be absorbed correctly. Excessive amounts of fiber and ash (minerals) can also interfere with digestibility – so pet foods containing a large proportion of plant ingredients, or where bone content is very high, will also suffer with reduced digestibility.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are an important aspect of a dog’s diet as they are used by their body to provide immediate energy and are stored in the liver and muscle as glycogen. This is broken down into glucose which is one of the main sources of energy for tissues like the brain and red blood cells. However, carbohydrates aren’t the sole contributor to this process as in its scarcity, even proteins and other compounds can synthesize to form glucose which is why there is no minimum level of carbohydrates that are required to be present in pet food.

There are two types: digestible carbohydrates (starches and sugars) which provide energy and indigestible carbohydrates (fiber) which are important for stool quality and gut motility. Ingredients that are mainly plant based like corn, barley, peas, rice, wheat and potatoes are the main suppliers of carbohydrates. Dietary fiber is not an essential nutrient, but it has multiple benefits, such as promotion of a healthy intestinal microbiota, adequate intestinal transit, and satiation. Digestible carbohydrates further spare the use of animal protein, which is a limited resource in pet nutrition.  

However, processes like grinding and cooking are required to be subjected to these carbohydrates in order for them to be easily digestible.

Dietary Fats

The role played by fats in pet food is to act as a source of essential fatty acids which are needed to make certain hormones and maintain the cell membranes. Certain Vitamins (A, D, E and K) can only be absorbed, stored and transported by fat. They also provide 2.5 times the amount of energy as provided by proteins or carbohydrates which is why fats are essential for diets that are consumed by active dogs.

Fats in pet food are derived from both animals and vegetables and are of 2 types- the omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acid families. Omega-3 fatty acids are pertinent for the reduction of inflammation and are needed for cell membranes. Sources including fish, shellfish and flaxseed are consumed to supply fats to the dog. Omega-6 fatty acids on the other hand are significant contributors to the tissue repair process and are supplied by vegetable oils.

Vitamins and Minerals

Major macro minerals needed by dogs include calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, chloride, and magnesium. Aside from these key minerals, trace elements like iron, copper and selenium are required for the body but in much smaller quantities.

When it comes to calcium levels in a dog, we need to be overly cautious while dealing with puppies. Unlike adult dogs, puppies cannot control calcium intake in the same way, meaning that they are more vulnerable to inappropriate levels of calcium in the body. Although puppies do need more calcium than adult dogs, excess calcium is just as bad as a calcium deficiency and can cause orthopedic ailments. Vitamin D plays a crucial part in the absorption of calcium. Fish Oil is one such source of vitamin D that will ensure that puppies are able to efficiently absorb the calcium in their diet.

Vitamins, although required by the body in very small amounts, are essential to enable many functions in the body. Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) for example is important in neurological function, and Vitamin B7 (Biotin) is vital in hair and nail growth. Dogs cannot make all of the minerals they need, hence their diet is required to provide them with these.

Minerals and vitamins are partly provided by the ingredients which deliver the major nutrients of protein, carbohydrates and fat and the other minerals and vitamins are added to the recipe.

Conclusion

Now that you have read in detail the benefits of each nutrient that is required to be present in pet food, you can feel free to compare them to our detailed description of the contents of our well formulated balanced diet which is found at the back of each pack and note why each high quality ingredient used in it is beneficial for your pooch. We have done our research, it’s time you do yours and make the right decision!

 

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Right4Tofy

 

 

 

‘I’m diabetic, I wish I had something like this’ joked Tofy’s owner as he cradles him affectionately in his arms, marveling at the difference that the balanced Right4Paws diet has made on his seven-and-a-half-year-old diabetic pooch. Pet parents often believe that their furry friend’s diet is balanced as there are no visible or immediate signs proving otherwise. This, however, is far from the reality of the situation since some deficiencies and ailments take time to reveal themselves and cannot be dismissed throughout their life by the fact that the dog’s coat is shiny or that they are very active and maintain good weight. In Tofy’s case, his diabetes was diagnosed when he was around 6 years old and out came with it, a host of symptoms. He not only suffered from an uncontrollable bladder and depleted body mass, but also fell prey to a diabetes induced cataract which left him completely blind.  His energy levels were another cause for concern as they took a significant hit with the onset of his illness. The once lively pooch was rendered lethargic and unmotivated, wanting to spend all day inside the safety of his cage, leaving his owners at a loss for a solution.

 

Although you can’t entirely prevent canine diabetes, one of the main aspects of their life that can aid in prevention of the problem to a certain extent is their diet. With this in mind and all the above problems at hand, they turned to the use of specialized diabetic diets for Tofy in the hopes that it would bring about a glimmer of his old self. Tofy, however, immediately made it clear to them that they were barking up the wrong tree. He entirely refused to consume these expensive diets and his owners’ efforts were in vain as they had to dispose of them pack by pack.

 

In search of anything that could lessen his suffering, they came across the Right4Paws diet. Following the guidelines set by the FEDIAF (The European Pet Food Industry), they learnt that Right4Paws had a specially formulated diet which prided itself on providing balance and nutrition which is species and biologically appropriate, better for their dog’s health and holds a low obesity risk. It also ensured that the formula provided all the necessary nutrients for their dog with each portion of food in accordance with his life stage and activity levels.

 

Impressed by its numerous benefits, Tofy’s parents purchased it in their continued attempt to find something that would both improve his health and please his taste buds. With Right4Paws using real ingredients and supplying each nutrient in just the right quantities, they were delighted when he took to it instantly. In less than 5 months on this diet, Tofy’s parent boasts about its hand in providing a control over his diabetic situation. It not only led to improved muscle mass and bladder control, but has also significantly boosted his eyesight to a semi- blind state. His activity levels as well have seen a number of paw-sitive changes as he now drags his owner instead of the other way around while out and about on the leash. Under their circumstances, the discovery of this diet was their saving grace as they can now confidently say that it saved him from the slippery slope that he was sliding down. While his parents can undoubtedly attest to the brilliance of this diet, Tofy too has a say. He hopes that you order a pack, see the difference for yourself and reward him for his recommendation with a tasty treat!

 

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