Tips for educating pet owners on combination feeding

Petcurean discusses what to understand from a manufacturer’s perspective to properly educate pet parents on how to combination feed their pets.

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Image courtesy of Diana Pet Food
Image courtesy of Diana Pet Food

Combination feeding is a significant, growing trend in the pet food industry right now, and educating pet owners on how to properly combination-feed your products is vital to ensuring dogs and cats continue to receive all the nutritionally balanced benefits your food provides.

Petcurean has spent considerable time developing not only complementary dry and wet food lines that easily pair for successful combination feeding, but also educational materials for the company’s customers on how to properly combine the products to best benefit their pets’ health. Petfood Industry asked:

What are some of the key considerations that came up as you were formulating your complementary products in the different lines?

“When formulating our wet and dry GO! SOLUTIONS recipes, we wanted to ensure that they were fully integrated with each other,” said Natalie Asaro, nutrition scientists for Petcurean. “By using similar ingredients and targeting comparable nutritional characteristics, we were able to formulate wet recipes that align with our GO! SKIN + COAT, CARNIVORE and SENSITIVITIES lines. Conveniently, we included the same color packaging to identify sister GO! SOLUTIONS wet and dry recipes. Doing so allows pet parents to easily choose a wet recipe that complements the GO! SOLUTIONS kibble they currently feed.”

Your website has guides on how to combination feed both dogs and cats. How do you feel that content has served your customers?

“For wet with dry combination feeding in particular, it’s important to understand the daily feeding guidelines and recipe formulations of all the ingredients involved,” said Asaro. “Wet food is not as calorically dense as kibble, simply because of the moisture levels. The same consideration is needed for toppers or meal mixers, depending on whether they are dry, wet, dehydrated, freeze-dried or semi-moist.

“The feeding guidelines on the package are the best place to start,” she said. “Some products will also include feeding guidelines for various life stages, and pets who are less active, more active or need to lose weight. These feeding guidelines are daily amounts. However, it’s important to remember that the energy needs of pets can vary greatly, even for pets of the same body weight. So while the feeding guidelines provide a valuable starting point, it’s important to adjust a pet’s food intake to maintain an ideal body weight. Once the pet owner has determined the daily amount for their pet for each type of food, then it is simple math to determine how much of each to feed.”

Read the companion article,"Combination feeding a popular option for pet parents,” published in the January 2020 issue of Petfood Industry magazine.

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