You may be seeing a lot of pet food coming out with the "grain-free" label but may not understand what the hype is all about. Here is a summary of why it's best to avoid grains in your cat or dog's food and treats:
What are grains?
Examples of grains in pet food:
Why are grains found in pet food?
Cereal grains are durable and when chemical preservatives are added, have a very long shelf life. Grains contain some protein but are exceptionally high in starchy carbohydrates. They can be easily mass processed and used as "fillers" in pet foods to add calories and protein at a fraction of the cost of adding meat, fish or poultry. Even organic grains are overprocessed and high in carbohydrates. Bottom line: pet food brands include grains to provide calories and boost the protein level while minimizing the cost of expensive animal proteins.
Feeding a high moisture, hypoallergenic, low carbohydrate diet such as a raw frozen diet is preferable and can eliminate a lot of the health symptoms you may be seeing with your pet that is eating a dry food with grains. Remember, cats are carnivores and have no use for carbohydrates and dogs fare best on a low carbohydrate diet.
Most pet foods contain grains unless they specify otherwise. Here are just a few examples:
Most "Prescription" Diets
Many Kirkland dry foods
Have a question about your cat or dog's diet? Please visit www.AskAriel.com and review our complete library of pet nutrition articles.