HOW WE CHOOSE OUR FOODS
In a market flooded with choices it can be hard to know if a food is all that it claims. Sometimes it’s not enough just to read a bag or ingredient label, check for recalls or even to call the company… and that’s where we come in.
We carefully research our food brand selections to understand who owns the company, the company’s track record and transparency, their ingredient sourcing and many more criteria. If you step in our doors you know you’ll be getting the best quality, safest, healthiest foods we have found! And we don’t stop there… we are constantly educating ourselves and searching for better foods entering the market. We want pets to live long & healthy lives, and we are committed to helping you do that!
HUMAN GRADE vs PET GRADE
While human food is well regulated, pet food is not, and it is currently common practice for large conglomerate pet food companies to include food leftovers/rejects, condemned animal parts, rejected grains, and euthanized/diseased/ill animals, in the making of pet food. A simple search on the internet can open a flood of heart-wrenching stories of beloved pets that have suffered due to unregulated foods on the market causing severe illness and death. By knowing which companies are family owned and are committed to transparency, using whole foods, human-grade ingredients, & preservative free… companies using a test-and-hold policy so you know that your pets are eating clean and safe food that they will thrive on.
Grains/Legumes in pet food:
Look for whole grains and legumes, from a company you know you can trust (beware foods owned by Mars, Nestle, Hills, or Purina to name a few). Often name brands use grain/legume waste products after removing the starches and oils for human use (typically by chemical processes). They are on the label as ground corn, corn gluten meal, brewer’s rice, ground wheat, or other flours. And if the pet food maker hasn’t provided sourcing, they are usually hiding the practice of using grains rejected for human use due to molds, high pesticide levels, or other contaminants (like heavy metals). Whether using a grain based or legume-based food make sure that the protein is mostly derived from meat in order to protect against amino acid deficiencies and diseases.
Clean, identified fat sources:
High quality fats are expensive, but important for our pet’s health. Avoid unnamed fats, or mixes and blends, as these can be a hiding place for rancid and recycled post- consumer oils and fats (restaurant industry waste) and have often been treated with chemicals and preservatives just to keep them stable in the pet food. These are also strongly linked to cancers.
Ingredients to avoid:
“by-products”, animal digest, hydrolyzed meats, ground corn & wheat (usually found as incomplete proteins), gluten meals, flours & fractionates, soy, corn syrup or beet pulp sugar, artificial colors, chemical preservatives (BHA, BHT, Ethoxyquin – ALL are banned in most countries), Propylene Glycol (anti-freeze “cousin”).
WHAT WE CARRY
There are many options available for feeding our pets, including dry kibble (born in the 50’s), canned, dehydrated, freeze dried raw, and fresh raw foods. Homemade and fresh diets have also gained popularity recently as pet owners have become more aware of the practices of corporate pet food manufacturers commercial diets that are low quality and contain by-products, preservatives, and junk fillers. Our staff is knowledgeable in dog and cat nutritional needs, as well as holistic support for common issues. Come in for help selecting the best foods and supplements (including for homemade diet completeness) for the health and happiness of your pets.
*We offer over 1,000 carefully selected raw, fresh, canned, freeze-dried, and dry options!
*The staff at The Natural Pet Market are well educated & our products are well researched, but we are not licensed veterinarians and cannot provide medical diagnosis or prescription, nor can we be a substitute for visiting a veterinarian. We believe in holistic care and treatment and we strive to support you with the best advice in holistic care of your pets.