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Maintaining the proper nutrition for your dog or cat can be tricky due to their different dietary needs during the different stages of life. Read further for a basic guideline and make an appointment with your vet to get the specifics. With the proper diet, your cat or dog can have a long, healthy and active life.
Puppies and kittens are full of energy. This high-energy lifestyle means they need more calories than their adult counterparts. At this stage, they also need the proper nutrition for the healthy development of their bodies and brains.
Puppies need protein from animal-based sources such as beef and fish and specific amino acids that can come from certain vegetables. However, it is important to consult a veterinarian on the proper balance of meats, fish, and vegetables so the puppy is not malnourished.
Kittens differ in that they cannot benefit nutritionally from vegetables and should be fed meat only. Meat provides the taurine, fat, and calories a kitten needs for healthy development and growth. To satisfy the nutritional requirement, kittens should be given canned pet foods as soon as they are weaned.
The daily caloric intake of an adult dog or cat should be reduced to avoid obesity. In the larger breeds of dogs and cats, a reduction in caloric intake will help avoid or manage common ailments such as hip dysplasia.
Growing to adulthood may require changes in diet to avoid allergic reactions. Studies show that both dogs and cats can react negatively to dairy products, wheat, wheat gluten, and soy. If your pet develops itchy spots on the skin or ears, red or swollen spots, hair loss, or ear infections, it may be allergic to something in its diet. A licensed veterinarian can help with the assessment and provide an alternative. You should take your pet to an emergency vet or animal hospital if the animal develops diarrhea, vomiting or other extreme symptoms.
If a senior pet is doing well with its current diet, most veterinarians will not recommend a change. However, with the advent of age-related illnesses, a change may be necessary to manage or reduce symptoms.
At the Montrose Veterinary Clinic, your pet is treated like family. We provide pet boarding, spay or neuter services, wellness checks, emergency services, and more. Please or call us at (713) 524-3814 for an appointment or a free consultation for new patients.
We serve the Montrose, River Oaks, and Houston, TX areas.