With more than 90 million households in the United States being home to a pet, it’s increasingly important to ensure that pet owners are well equipped to provide the best care possible to America’s dogs and cats. Committed to helping pets live long and healthy lives, the Pet Food Institute (PFI), the national trade association representing U.S. dog and cat food makers, recently launched a new video series for pet lovers and owners.
Featuring Danielle Conway, doctor of Veterinary Medicine, “Vet Talks” educates consumers on achieving and maintaining an ideal body condition for their dogs and cats through sound nutrition and addresses some of the most common and vital questions surrounding pet food labels, ingredients, nutrients and feeding guidelines.
“One of the most important factors in maintaining optimal health and wellness for pets is controlled by pet owners at home,” said Dr. Conway, Rarebreed Veterinary Partners. “By choosing an appropriate, complete and balanced pet food and sticking to recommended feeding guidelines, pet owners are guaranteeing that dogs and cats are getting the more than 40 essential nutrients they need to maintain an ideal weight and live a healthy life.”
Research findings show more than half of dogs (56 percent) and cats (60 percent) in the U.S. are overweight or obese, which can lead to serious health risks, including diabetes, respiratory disease or kidney disease. The new PFI video series offers simple tips and adjustments to feeding and treating habits that can help pet owners ensure safe pet care.
“By partnering with their veterinarian, pet owners can make an easy-to-follow plan that will set their pet up for a long and healthy life,” said Kelly Kanaras, PFI director of communications. “This video series was developed with consumer questions in mind, and Dr. Conway helps take the complexity out of pet nutrition. We want to empower pet owners to take control of their pet’s weight by offering these easy-to-follow videos that are intended to feel like they are at a veterinary visit.”
Topics covered in the video series include reading a pet food label, feeding guidelines, pet food ingredients and nutrients, maintaining a healthy body weight and therapeutic versus over-the-counter pet foods. Dr. Conway also demonstrates how to conduct at-home assessments on dogs and cats to determine if they are potentially over or underweight and shares a resource that pet owners can take to their next veterinary visit to start the conversation about their pet’s healthy weight.
In addition to “Vet Talks,” PFI has developed comprehensive web content that includes recommendations for feeding and treating practices. This innovative tool joins a library of science-based information on www.petfoodinstitute.org, which explains the importance of pet food nutrition and safety.