Before I get too far into prescription diets, I wanted to tell everyone that I went to the pet store last night to buy some food, and I thought I would look around a little. I looked at all the foods, and was very impressed that many of the companies I listed previously had renewed their focus on good qulaity ingredients while still emphasizing research. With that said, I hope that with a little education you can pick the best food for your dog. However, lets talk a little about what to feed if they have certain diseases.
The bag pictured above is a good example of a Prescription Diet from Science Diet. We don’t reach for these with every case, but these diets are vital with certain disease processes. I will try some examples:
Itchy Skin and Ears: Sometimes this is caused by an allergy to beef, chicken, corn, or wheat. These diets have very limited protein and carbohydrate sources, and some of them have proteins that are broken down extra-small (that is the Z/D shown above). “All natural” diets can also help with this, but they are not regulated as closely and can sometimes sneak chicken proteins in.
Kidney Failure: Protein and Sodium restricted, this diet helps slow down the progression of kidney disease.
Crystal and Stone Formation: Dogs and cats can form crystals and stones in their bladders from the diet they eat. These prescription diets are low in the minerals that form the crystals and stones and promote good urinary health. A Royal Canin Urinary SO diet (below) is a good example of this.
Theere are may other diets, some to promote weight loss, some to promote joint health, others to adress specific liver diseases, even a deit formulated for brain health!
I say all of this to make the point that when animals have specific diseases, nutrition plays a key role. These diets are researched with the diseases in mind, and they have been put to the test often just as rigorously as the medications for the diseases. Hopefully, your pet will never need a diet for a disease, but its always good to know they are there if we need them!